New circuit and a little cleanup


  #1  
Old 11-21-04, 10:45 AM
linanbob
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New circuit and a little cleanup

Here's the circumstances: (All this is in a finished garage.)

1. There's 14/2 romex that 'emerges' from the top of a wall, has a three-prong plug attached and is plugged into a garage door opener outlet. This "circuit" powers a motion-detector light mounted above the garage door outside and an outlet inside. (A circuit tester shows the outlet as wired correctly.)

2. I'd like to add a two-gang outlet box on a wall, using Wiremold metallic raceway, going to a new circuit and breaker in the breaker panel. I'd prefer 20A here.

3. I'd prefer to kill both birds with one stone, and run raceway from the panel to the new outlet, then onto where this romex emerges. Gets me my outlet, as well as cleaning up the poor light/outlet installation.

I've already searched the forum and found that romex inside this raceway is a bad idea. I'll use THHN.

My questions:

Since there's already 14ga romex, I assume it's better if I settle for a 15A circuit?

What's the correct way of getting the THHN into the breaker panel?

What's the correct way of mating up the romex with the THHN? Simple junction box and wirenuts?

Any recommendations about doing the new breaker install in the breaker panel myself? I'm reasonably handy with tools, and (IMO) possess some common sense. THe wife is uncomfortable about that idea. What would an electrician charge for that work?

Thanks in advance, everybody.
 
  #2  
Old 11-21-04, 11:22 AM
J
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The existing wiring is wired very oddly and already violates several codes. So you might want to fix that first. I don't understand why the Romex comes though the wall and is plugged in rather than just being hard-wired into the box. That's weird.

Since there's already 14ga romex, I assume it's better if I settle for a 15A circuit?
14-gauge wiring cannot be protected by larger than a 15-amp breaker. Since the wire is already there, isn't the breaker already there too? Why are you talking about adding a new breaker to existing wire?

What's the correct way of getting the THHN into the breaker panel?
THHN must be protected by conduit the entire route.

Any recommendations about doing the new breaker install in the breaker panel myself?
Installing a new breaker is no more difficult than adding a receptacle, but it is a lot more dangerous.
 
  #3  
Old 11-21-04, 03:07 PM
linanbob
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Regards the existing wiring being weird: agree times 2 and my point is to fix it. It appears I wasn't clear enough in describing it, though.

The weirdly-wired stuff is between two garage doors. The romex "emerges" from a hole in the drywall near ceiling level and is run to and plugged into an existing garage door opener outlet as if it were an extension cord. I know that's not right.

While adding the new outlet elsewhere in the garage on a new breaker, I thought I could run more Wiremold raceway and THHN from the new outlet over to where this romex emerges, cut it off and wirenut it to the new wire. (In an externally-mounted box, of course.)

I'm trying to find a way of fixing this that doesn't involve ripping out drywall.

(That description make better sense now?)

Regards getting the new wire to the panel, the THHN will be in the Wiremold metallic raceway all the way to the panel. My question concerned actually getting the wires themselves into the breaker panel proper. Do the wires need to be cable-clamped like romex or does Wiremold provide some part that adapts their raceway to the panel box?
 
  #4  
Old 11-21-04, 05:48 PM
J
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This could probably be corrected merely by running that Romex into the GDO receptacle box from behind the drywall and hard-wiring it there. Is there some reason that you don't want this fairly simple solution?

I'm not familiar enough with the Wiremold product line to know exactly what you need.

I applaud you for wanting to make things right.
 
  #5  
Old 11-22-04, 05:45 AM
linanbob
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Regards the romex: Given the relative locations of the romex and (either) garage door outlet, I can't get the romex where it needs to be without removing drywall and drilling holes in three or four ceiling joists.

Regards getting the THHN into the breaker panel, I assume there's a requirement to physically connect the conduit to the breaker panel box?

Thanks for sticking with me on this thread...
 
  #6  
Old 11-22-04, 09:07 AM
W
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THHN wire must always be run in a some sort of enclosure or raceway, eg the 'Wiremold' that you are planning on using. The Wiremold system includes the necessary fittings to connect to standard boxes, for example, you can connect Wiremold to a 1/2" knockout in the side of your panel or a junction box using the appropriate fitting. See http://www.wiremold.com/www/consumer...eway/index.asp and look at the bottom of the page.

Personally I prefer to use EMT; it is cheaper than Wiremold, and IMHO easier to deal with once you get the hang of making bends.

For the connection to the Romex, I would use an 'old work' junction box. These are designed to be installed into a rectangular hole in a wall, and lock in place. Carefully cut the hole around the romex, until you get a large enough hole for the junction box. Properly clamp the romex into the junction box. Now on the face of the junction box, mount the wiremold box designed to fit over a junction box. Run the wiremold into the side of this, and your THHN to the junction box. Now simply splice the THHN to the Romex.

Note that wiremold is a metal wireway system. While you _may_ use this as your equipment ground, I would _strongly_ recommend that you use a green THHN wire as your equipment ground. Bond this ground wire to the metal junction box at _each_ junction box.

-Jon
 
  #7  
Old 12-01-04, 05:38 AM
linanbob
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Here's what I ended up doing...

Everything that was attached to the strange piece of romex was disconnected - romex unplugged, light, switch, and outlet.

I broke down and cut out about a ten-inch square of drywall where the romex came out of the wall. With some careful tugging, I was able to remove outright all the romex, leaving about a foot that comes from the outside motion detector light.

Installed a box to which I clamped this remaining romex, then fixed the drywall.

After recounting the number of outlets on this garage circuit (three outlets on a 20A circuit with no high-draw equipment) I changed plans and decided against a new circuit. So...

From an existing outlet, I ran Wiremold metallic to the new box, then more down to a new switch/outlet controlling the outside light. From another existing outlet, I ran more Wiremold to a new outlet box.

Black,white and green 12 ga THHN all around.

All the new Wiremold box grounds pigtailed to the green.

All the new outlets are wired on the load side of the garage's GFCI.

Circuit tester says all is wired correctly.

Seems good to go to me...

If I acquire any larger power tools, I'll break down and install the new circuit. (Or more likely, hire an electrician to do it.)
 
 

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