Running New Wire in Old Conduit


Old 07-18-05, 11:41 PM
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Running New Wire in Old Conduit

Hey all,

I've read a lot of posts here and find the information very useful. I thought I would put my question(s) up for grabs and see what you all have to say. I'm looking to get an air compressor in the next month or so and update my detached garage accordingly. It currently has a 30amp circuit split to 2 15amps breakers. The compressors I'm looking at range from 220V/15amp to 220V/30amp. I'd prefer the 30amp more powerful ones if I can afford it. Anyways, the current wiring "should" be in conduit since its under my paved driveway(was done 15 years ago). How probable is it to pull additional cable to the garage to get this 220V service? Ideally, I'd like to add a 60-100Amp panel in the garage and have room for a possible wall A/C unit and small 220V welder. I'd have to dig a trench around my driveway to run the wiring if I can't use the existing run, which could be a pain. Any ideas???

Oh yeah, sheesh, back up resistance emergency heating sure does use a large breaker!! In trying to see if I have room for this garage upgrade, I was surprised to see such a large breaker, especially for something that has never come on since I've lived here over the last 4 years.

Thanks for your responses - Drew
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Old 07-19-05, 05:33 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
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You cannot pull additional wires, you must replace the existing wires.

No, you don't have to go around your driveway. Tools exist for running cable under a driveway.

Don't be so sure that conduit is in place. You will have to follow the wires from both ends to see if conduit exists anywhere.
Old 07-19-05, 08:25 AM
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hmmm, how would your run under an existing driveway? The way it is layed out is ... house w/ breaker panel butted directly against driveway(~10ft of blacktop then ~10ft of concrete that adjoinst the slab of the garage)then the garage butted up against the driveway. I guess I thought that it would be easier to drop a small trench around the outskirt of the driveway and go to the back of the garage. Also, there are lights on the outside of the garage that are controlled from the house, so one wire in the existing run is likely from that.

Thanks for the input. - Drew
Old 07-19-05, 08:34 AM
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The easiest way to get under a driveway (unless the soil is very rocky or very dense clay) is a garden hose and a piece of conduit. It normally takes about ten minutes. The procedure is covered by those fliers in the home center that tell you how to put in a sprinkler system.

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