Location of receptacle for OTR microwave


Old 02-14-09, 12:19 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Virginia
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Location of receptacle for OTR microwave

Our contractor just installed an over the range microwave. The electrical cord goes up through the cabinet above the microwave and plugs into a receptacle located on the lower, back wall of the cabinet. We would like to move the receptacle to the upper, back wall of the cabinet to give us more usable space in the lower part of the cabinet. We could clamp the cord and run it up the back wall of the cabinet. However, our contractor has told us that is not allowed. He said that the code requires that the outlet stay in the lower part of the cabinet. He said that the code requires the outlet to be within reach of a person standing on floor without a ladder. Is this true? I could not find anything in the Virginia code that specified anything about this. Who would care if the outlet was 6 feet above the ground or 7.5 feet above the ground? Does it really matter?
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Old 02-14-09, 04:45 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: VA.
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Yes, he is correct. This is a permanently installed appliance rated over 300 VA and should contain a disconnecting means within sight of the equipment which is your cord/plug.

A disconnecting means shall be located in sight and not more than 6' (or 6' 6" can't remember)above finished floor (aff). Also, for a disconnect, this measurement is for the handle in it's upper most position. Which doesn't apply to this application, just thought I'd throw that in there.

There's 2 ways around this:
1) If your electrical panel is located within sight of the microwave and it used for the disconnecting means but must have a device installed on it so it is able to be locked in the off postion.
2) If a switch is installed on the wall for the receptacle and it is "lockable" in the open position.

It won't be in the Va Uniform Statewide Building Code, if that's what you were referring to, it is is the NEC, articles 422, and 430.

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