any special requirements for basement ceiling outlets


Old 04-07-06, 06:31 AM
wgc is offline
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any special requirements for basement ceiling outlets

I have an unfinished basement with outlets in the ceiling mounted to the joists facing downward. I'm going to take a look at how they were wired this weekend to see if I can spot any problems, but what should I look for? Are there any special requirements? Are ceiling outlets allowed? I'm not even sure how many circuits they used or what is connected to what, except I was surprised to find a basement outlet on the same circuit as the attic light.

I understand all basement outlets are supposed to be GFI protected now (these aren't): is that still true for ceiling outlets (7'6" up so "inaccessible"?)?

Is there a requirement to have "accessible" outlets? I can think of four scattered around the basement but they would certainly fail the "hoover" rule if that applied.
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Old 04-07-06, 07:11 AM
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There are no requirements that there be receptacles in unfinished basements. Any general purpose receptacles in an unfinished basement need to be GFCI protected.

There are no special requirements for receptacles in ceilings, attaching them to the joists is fine. As for GFCI protection in the ceiling, that could be argued, based on the height and the accessibility. I would certainly GFCI protect these since they are the only ones you have.
Old 04-07-06, 07:57 AM
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Is there a suspended ceiling covering these receptacles? If so, then the receptacles can stay, but you cannot have anything plugged in to them.
Old 04-07-06, 08:01 AM
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I always recommend "hospital grade" receptacles for ceiling use, also. They'll be a lot more reliable, especially over time, at holding a plug up against gravity.
Old 04-07-06, 11:58 AM
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Ceiling receptacles are common in basements for plugging in hanging shop light fixtures.
Old 04-10-06, 09:29 AM
wgc is offline
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just convenience outlets

In my case, the ceiling receptacles are just convenience outlets. I can see how they would be much easier to install than running conduit and even new walls. The lights are hardwired fluoresecents.

I like the idea of at least one hospital grade receptacle, depending on how expensive they are. One of the outlets has a CO/gas detector and it doesn't stay up there without duct tape. The duct tape was a short term fix and hard-wired interconnected detectors are the long term fix, but maybe something else in the medium term would be a good idea.

There is no drop ceiling or plans for one. I suppose I could if I wanted to but since the ceiling is a little low and I'm a little taller than average, why go through the effort just to make myself feel crowded.

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