220v, 60a: conduit needed?

Old 10-11-04, 01:39 AM
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220v, 60a: conduit needed?

hi. i'm planning to remodel my kitchen. currently i have a 60-amp 220-volt circuit running through conduit from the panel to the outlet box in the kitchen. i need to move that outlet box a few feet. do i need to extend the conduit, or can i get by with romex without any conduit.

i am replacing an electric range with a gas cooktop and electric oven. the oven only needs a 30-amp circuit.

Old 10-11-04, 05:30 AM
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What type of wire is presently in the conduit?
Old 10-11-04, 09:22 AM
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I would do the following if I was doing the job... (read through to see what parts you will need) Only do the work if you feel comfortable and confident that you can do so safely.

Prepare to do a new pull of wire. I would suggest you pull out all of the old wires except for one, and use that wire to pull in the new wires. Since you will be pulling from the panel, you will want to shut down the panel BEFORE doing the pull. It's a nuisance, but it MUST be done before you proceed. Kill the power to the entire panel before attaching your pull wires.

Buy enough 30A wires (#10 gauge) to run from the breaker panel to the new location of the outlet box. To figure out how much you need, take one of the wires you pulled out above and measure it. Now add on the extra length to run to the new location of the stove plug, and add an extra 5 feet to your overall total for safety. When buying the wire, buy stranded wire for ease of pulling, and get the same colours as they used.

Now attach your 3 new wires to the old wire (which I will now call a 'pull wire') securely. Make sure you REALLY bind the wires together tightly or you may pull the wire out without pulling the new wire through. Use lots of tape to tape the three wires and the pull wire together but don't make too big a 'bump' where it will have problems rounding corners.

Start pulling the new wires through, however, just pull enough new wire into the pipe so that the you now have enough of this 'pull wire' at the end to extend a few feet past where the new box is going. (so pull about 6-10 feet) Once you are done the small pull, make sure none of the old/new wires are touching anything inside of the panel. If you think the part below will take a while, you can turn back on the power temporarily so long as the ends of the new wires are safely secured away from the panel and you can lock/secure the room that has the panel. (the open panel is an electrocution hazard to children - I would leave power off if you have kids and can't lock the room or get rid of the kids for the afternoon)

Now you need to remove the OLD outlet box. (toss out the old plug or save it, but you won't need it here, keep the old box for now) With the box gone remove the old box conduit connector and put it aside.

Now get a conduit coupling and a length of conduit that is long enough to go directly to the new location of the plug. (make sure you use the same type of conduit and fittings as is used on the rest of the pipe - don't use plastic pipe when they have used metal/EMT)

Slip a coupling and extra conduit length over your pull wire and then secure them in place to the existing conduit. (remember to put conduit straps on every few feet, and always put a strap on within one foot of a box - but don't put that last strap on until AFTER the box is attached.) With the conduit coupling and new pipe in place, you can now attach the conduit box connector you took off from above.

As for the box itself, the depends on the type of plug/outlet you are using. If the new 30A wall outlet is the same size as the old one, then you could mount it on the old box. If so, use the old box and mount it on the end of the pipe using the conduit connector. If the 30A wall outlet is a different box size than before, you'll need the proper box to mount it. Make sure you get the right size box for the job.

When you have the box attached to the end of the conduit, make sure to secure the locknut in place and then screw the box to the wall using the holes in the back of the box. The box needs to be VERY secure to tolerate the force needed to UNplug the plug. (which, as you may have found, takes a lot of force)

At this point your pipe run should be complete and the pull wire should be sticking out of the new box. Now head down and shut off power (if you turned it back on temporarily) and finish your wire pull. Make sure to give yourself extra wire on both ends of the pull - that way you have enough to make your connection.

Finish the install of the 30A stove plug by securing it to the wires. Leave extra wire in the box so that when the plug isn't mounted to the box there is 6"-8" of cable sticking out. Don't over-strip the wire when connecting the outlet, only strip enough to fit into the lug with an 1/8" of extra copper showing. The plug will need to be grounded, so get a foot of green ground wire when buying the other wire. Solid wire is likely a better choice since it will hold better under the ground screw in the box. Secure the outlet to the box so that it is complete and ready to go.

Again, make sure power is off. Remove the old 60A breaker and put a 30A breaker in its place. Make sure the new breaker is shut off. When hooking up the wires, the white goes to the neutral bar (where all the whites are) and the two coloured wires go to the breaker. Again, leave a bit of extra wire here, in case someone needs to move the circuit in future. However, make sure you tuck the extra wire away so that it doesn't get in the way of anything. Everything should be nice and neat when done.

When complete, put the panel cover back on and turn on the main breaker. (leave the new breaker OFF) Once the panel is live, have someone stand where they can see the new plug, then turn it on. (if any problems are noted, turn it off right away)

However, this should be something that can be done without incident. The benefit to running new lines is that you don't run into issues with oversized wire. Mixing gauges is not advised, and you can't just run a new wire to the new outlet from the old box since you would have to run smaller wire and hook it up to bigger wire. That's an issue since someone could look at the wire at the panel and think that the wire is heavy gauge throughout, and they wouldn't know the last part was smaller wire. If you ran larger gauge wire to the new stove plug you wouldn't be able to wire it into the new plug since the new plug likely wouldn't accept the larger wire as it is not rated for it.

Extending the conduit so there is no old box would be best, and running the proper wire would make sure there are no mistakes in future. With a new breaker in place, all parts of the circuit would be code compliant and safe so long as installed properly.

This is just my opinion anyway, and I tend to prefer to go the 'long way' so that I don't run into problems/issues in future.


Old 10-11-04, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by racraft
What type of wire is presently in the conduit?
the black and red wires are stranded, the white is solid. they are copper.
Old 10-11-04, 11:08 AM
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thanks savant for the very thorough reply. pulling new wire would not be a problem, but i have a couple of questions (including my original one).

1: do i have to use conduit for a 60-amp, 220-volt circuit? assuming i'm running new wire, could i use romex? or, can i use flexible conduit? what about for a 30-amp circuit?

2: is it not advisable to have a 60-amp circuit, including plug, going to the oven, even though the new oven only requires 30-amps?

thanks again.
Old 10-11-04, 02:49 PM
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1. It depends on your locallity. In some places (like Chicago) conduit is required for everything. Generally conduit is not required though.

2. If the manufacturer installation instruction say to use a 30 amp then a 30amp should be used. You can use the larger wire but should change the breaker to a 30 amp.
Old 10-11-04, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by tornatore
1: do i have to use conduit for a 60-amp, 220-volt circuit? assuming i'm running new wire, could i use romex? or, can i use flexible conduit? what about for a 30-amp circuit?
Whether you HAVE to have conduit can depend on different things, but it's generally a good idea to use conduit if the entire run is conduit. Is there is some reason that you can't run conduit to the new location? As the other poster noted, there may be code considerations that we don't know about since we don't know everything about where you live, what type of building you're in etc. If you stick to conduit then you're pretty well assured that the end result will meet code. Any other type of install would be taking the chance that local code might not allow it.

2: is it not advisable to have a 60-amp circuit, including plug, going to the oven, even though the new oven only requires 30-amps?thanks again.
Plugs/cords are rated according to the current load. If you left the 60A outlet/plug and connected your 30A applicance then there is a possibility that you could exceed the 30A rating for the cord/applicance, but the breaker wouldn't trip until the load hit 60A. This represents a hazard and could fry your appliance or worse, start a fire/cause injury.

That's why you need to run the proper wire for the load. When you run 30A wire and use a 30A breaker, the circuit will be suited for a 30A load. It would be unwise to try and cut corners by using the old wire or breaker. Just pull them out, put in the proper wire/breaker as described above and you'll be all set.



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