Code for running lights?

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Old 03-18-06, 11:35 PM
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Code for running lights?

I am wiring my basement and I was curious if there is a code on how you run your power to your switches and lights. Do you have to run to the light first or can you run to the switch first.
 
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Old 03-18-06, 11:39 PM
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genrally it will be either way but here is a joker [ a tricky part ] if you run in " switch loop " you have to remark the white wire as hot conductor so this way it will advoid some confusion later time [ the colour you can pick what you like most common is black but can be other as well or use the electrical tape as well too both work this way]

If need more explation please let us know i will find a way to describe it more clear


Merci , Marc
 
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Old 03-19-06, 06:46 AM
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You can run power to the light first or to the switch first. Both methods have advantages and disadvantages.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 07:59 AM
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There is no code on this. It is personal choice and is usually determined by the room layout.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 09:04 AM
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Thanks for the input, by the way what would be the advantages and disadvantages of wiring the two different ways.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 10:47 AM
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If you never need to alter the circuit in any way, then any advantages and disadvantages have to do with how much cable you need, and the type of cable.

However, if you have to alter the circuit in the future then one method of wiring will make it easier to expand from the switch, the other from the light. Wiring power to the switch is also easier for most lay persons to understand. For some reason people have trouble with switch loops.

You can also, to some extent, plan for future expansion by running wires ahead of time. For example, run 12-3 or 14-3 between every switch and light, even if you don;t have a fan and never will.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 04:14 PM
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Especially for DIYers, I always recommend running power first to the switch(es). It just keeps things simple, both now and in the future. The key element of simplicity is that the white wire is then always the neutral. It confuses too many people when the white wire is not neutral. Keeping it a neutral avoids all those problems when somebody wants to change a switch to a switch/receptacle combo, and all those problems when somebody replaces a light fixture.

The main reason for doing otherwise is to save a bit of cable and/or reduce box crowding in a few cases. But for a DIYer, saving a bit of cable is usually a non-issue. If you buy the biggest boxes in the store and plan your cable routing well, you won't have a box crowding problem.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 07:18 PM
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Thanks for the input. I think that I will wire to the switch in order to keep things simple. I had already purchased the deepest boxes I could so everything should go off without a hitch.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 08:00 PM
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Just a note, If your going to power electric motors you may want to keep the lights on a separate line.
the hi current draw from motors can make the lights dim if they are on the same line.
 
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