Junction Boxes in Walls?

Old 05-10-04, 09:27 PM
Jeff Stock
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Junction Boxes in Walls?

I'm remodeling my bathroom and am going to take the existing bathroom lights and receptacles off the circuits they are on now and pull new, dedicated circuits for them. Since the bathroom was in the middle of the circuits, not at the end, I am wondering how I can remove the wiring for the bathroom and still keep the existing circuits intact. The easiest thing to do would be to cut back the cable to the walls and join the wires in a junction box in the wall (i.e. 1-in, 1-out). But my reading of the NEC implies that the boxes must be in a permanently accessible. I would have to cover the wall junction boxes with sheetrock.

But there isn't enough existing cable to make a run through the top plate and into the attic and below is inaccessible because it's the ceiling of the first floor. Am I interpreting the code correctly? Do I have to pull off the sheetrook to the last and first receptacles in the existing circuit and run uninterrupted cable between them? Or is there another way?

Old 05-11-04, 04:38 AM
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You are correct that all junction boxes must remain accessible. 'Buried' junction boxes are a nightmare, because when something goes wrong, it goes wrong inside the box, and then you need to rip the wall apart to find it.

But you don't need to leave the old fixtures in place.

Your options are:

1) Pulling a new cable which bypasses the old (and now unused) devices.
2) Leaving the old cable in place to the old device boxes, and then putting _blank_ covers on the old boxes.
3) Moving the old devices back into the wall and putting some other sort of access panel up.
4) Replacing the old boxes with _larger_ boxes, and pulling your new circuit so that it shares the same junction boxes as the old circuit.

Old 05-11-04, 08:28 AM
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IF this is a partition between the bathroom and a bedroom, possibly you can set an outlet-box on the bedroom "side" of the partition which can be used for a receptacle-outlet in the bedroom.

Good Luck & Enjoy the Experience!!!!!!!!!!
Old 05-11-04, 09:35 AM
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The easiest solution is probably to abandon the wires in the wall and pull new wire though the attic to join the bypassed wires. The abandoned wires must be disconnected at both ends. You can't leave live wires dangling in the walls.
The new wires can fished down the wall. You don't need to fasten them every 4 feet like new wires in an open wall.
Old 05-12-04, 10:29 AM
Jeff Stock
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I ended up popping off the sheetrock to the nearest receptacle and running a new wire from a junction box in the attic. I tried my best to enjoy the experience, as suggested above, but I just couldn't manage it

Thanks for everyone's suggestions.

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