Running Romex Into Attic

Discussion in 'Electrical and Wiring' started by ashtonallen, Nov 14, 2017.

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  1. Nov 14, 2017 #1

    ashtonallen

    ashtonallen

    ashtonallen

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    I'm planning to add an outlet for my wall mounted TV. The source outlet is about 3 studs away from where I want to put the new outlet. To avoid having to repair drywall caused by running romex across the studs, I would like to drill a hole in the wall header, run romex from the source outlet straight up into the attic, run it along the header across 3 studs, then drop it back down through a drilled hole in the header to the new outlet. I live in Wilmington, NC and wonder if there would be any code problems with doing this? Also, does anyone have a suggestion how to affix the romex to the header?
     
  2. Nov 14, 2017 #2

    joecaption

    joecaption

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    Header?
    A header is what's over windows and doors to support the roof.
    Guessing you mean the top plate.
    That's what sits on the top of walls.
    Studs sit vertical inside the wall, so I have to guess you really mean the joist in the attic.
    If I was going to do it I would drill 1/2" holes with a spade bit through the middle of the joist and run the wire though the holes instead of over them.
     
  3. Nov 14, 2017 #3

    ashtonallen

    ashtonallen

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    Thank you for the help with terminology. Just to make sure I’m clear. You would go to the edge of the joist and drill a long hole in the center the length of the several studs?
     
  4. Nov 14, 2017 #4

    afjes_2016

    afjes_2016

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    What I do sometimes especially if the wall is an outside wall and fishing romex in an insulated wall can be quite tricky if not impossible at times.

    A less labor intensive suggestion of course is if you have basement with access. Go down into basement and then back up again three studs over.

    And if that is too much trouble you may want to consider taking off the trim where the floor and wall meet. Cut the sheet rock only high enough from the floor level up so it does not extend past the top of where the floor molding will be. Once you cut a strip of sheet rock then drill holes thru the studs. Run your romex thru those holes in the studs. Place a nail guard over each stud that you drilled (reason being sometimes it is difficult to get the drill in there and make the hold far enough back in the stud so a sheet rock screw does not puncher it or a nail from the floor molding. Put your floor molding back against the wall and secure it. Done. No need to replace the sheet rock you cut out because the floor molding is high enough to cover the cut out portion. But I would at least put spacer between the floor molding and the stud where you cut out the sheet rock to take up the difference in depth of the wall so the floor molding does not bow inward because of the void now.

    Note be cautious of box fill calculations of the box you are tapping into. What size box it is and how many romexes are there now?
     
  5. Nov 14, 2017 #5

    bud16415

    bud16415

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    Up and over or down and over or straight over. Makes no difference in code. If the attic is just a unfinished space with insulation showing and I went that way I would just use what is called a cable staple to secure the wire to whatever wood framing is there.

    I personally like afjes_2016 method with removing the baseboard. Be careful drilling the holes because the bottom of the studs will have nails coming up thru them.

    The steel plates mentioned are used to keep a future nail from going thru a wire. They are used when the wire is close to the surface. So in the baseboard method if you can’t get your drill back in far enough and you just notch the face of the stud for the wire you will want to put the protective steel plates where the wire is close to the surface. Not that anyone is likely to hang a picture at floor level but someone could re-nail the trim I guess

    If your walls are just painted without texture cutting a slot in the drywall and repairing it is not a big deal also. If your walls have a texture or some covering then it gets a little harder. I always keep a few pieces of drywall scraps around to make patches out of. They do sell smaller pieces you can manage in your car for just about the price of a full sheet.

    There is one other method and that is to use surface mounted track to incase the wires with a snap on cover. Not only will that hold your power cord it will hold all the other inputs going to the TV from your equipment rack. Keeps it all neat and tidy and when you need to add a cable you don’t have to rip the house apart again.
     
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  6. Nov 14, 2017 #6

    bud16415

    bud16415

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    I didn’t mention in the last post another common option and one I have used in my own home theater. We all know what an outlet is but they also make a box called an inlet. And you can buy the whole deal called a power bridge. Here is a link.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GWGZKF...t=&hvlocphy=9006390&hvtargid=pla-307437706068

    This would all be installed in the one stud cavity and near the floor would be the inlet. From the inlet you would just then run the patch cord over to your outlet you plan on tapping into. One reason I use a power bridge is I have my electronics powered off a battery backup power conditioner and I plug that into an outlet and then run out of that to the inlet. The power bridge also provides passage for cables and such.

    Now you have 5 or 6 options to think about.
     
  7. Nov 14, 2017 #7

    Snoonyb

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    Also, there is a good chance that after drilling the double top plates above the stud bay of the existing recp., there will be a fire block that need to be drilled through. So, rather than the additional expense of a flex bit, there is a flexible fiberglass rod for locating obstructions within wall cavities, and you may have to use it either going up or down.

    Instead of drilling the ceiling joists, nail a 1x4 across the span an staple the romex beside it, on either side.
     
  8. Nov 14, 2017 #8

    Sparky617

    Sparky617

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    I used one of the inlet boxes that bud talks about. One challenge is I get a 60 cycle hum on my subwoofer when I use that line. If you use the power inlet make sure you have plenty of separation between your audio/video cables and the 120VAC power cable.
     
  9. Nov 14, 2017 #9

    mabloodhound

    mabloodhound

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    Drilling the top plate is a good idea and will work. KISS principal applies
     
  10. Nov 14, 2017 #10

    bud16415

    bud16415

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    They used to be made to take regular romex between the inlet and the outlet. Now I see they have a special cable that I’m sure is code compliant. I wonder if they are using some shielding in there now.

    I have never had any trouble with picking up 60hz hum I wonder if it is because I have the power conditioner inline.
     
  11. Nov 15, 2017 #11

    ashtonallen

    ashtonallen

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    That is a very clever idea!

     
  12. Nov 15, 2017 #12

    afjes_2016

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    I have suggested to people (although I don't mess with AV installation) to run their AV cables from the lowest part of the wall (closest to the floor, just above the wall board into a old work low voltage device box and cover the low voltage device box with this type of face plate. It has brushes to block seeing behind the hole but allows the AV cables to go in and out of the box very easily. Using the low voltage device boxes and the brush face plates are far cheaper in the end than some of the combo AV wall units and it also allows you to keep the power and AV lines separate to keep any unwanted interference away. You can run the romex up in the same cavity but keep the power to the opposite side of the cavity in the wall going up the stud.
     
  13. Nov 20, 2017 #13

    hornetd

    hornetd

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    Since you will want to remove the entire section of baseboard behind which you will run your new cable let me suggest that when you reinstall the baseboard you replace the drywall that you cut out by screwing drywall to the back of the baseboard. When you put the baseboard back in place countersink the screws a little and cover the screw heads with push in plugs. Then if you ever need to remove it again you pry out the plugs, remove the screws, and the entire baseboard comes off in one piece cap molding and all.

    If you want the ultimate in future flexibility then remove the baseboard and drywall to the same height as 4000 Series Wiremold. Draw your cut lines using the sections of raceway themselves as the ruler. The cap molding will conceal any minor gaps but fill anything larger than 1/8 inch with patching compound. Make the horizontal cut with a circular saw using a masonry cutting blade and set the depth so that the blade does not cut the studs. Series 4000 Wiremold is 1&1/4 inches thick. 3/4 inch baseboard on 1/2 inch drywall is also 1&1/4 inches thick. By installing the available dividers you can have a path to anywhere on the wall that the Wiremold is installed for both the power and low voltage audio & video cables. You can then fish any power or low voltage cable from the back of the raceway up to the location of any new outlet.
     

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