Electrical outlet on island

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Old 12-05-09, 07:58 PM
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Electrical outlet on island

I've been reading this forum for several years and have always been able to find answers from previously asked questions but I've never seen this one.

I have a pond with an island in the middle. I would like to have an electrical outlet on it for Christmas lights, etc. A 120volt 20 amp circuit would be plenty. The island is about 30 ft from the nearest bank and is between 7 & 8 ft. deep. I don't want it visible so I'd rather not have anything overhead.

There is a bridge to the island but while it's sturdy there is a lot of "flex" as you cross it. It would also add another 75 ft to the distance to attach to the bridge.

So my question is, can I bury UF cable to the pond and simply drop it (weighted down) to the bottom of the pond to get across to the island? I don't want to do anything dangerous and I don't want to have to redo it next year.
 
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Old 12-05-09, 08:35 PM
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Hi Jim

Jim this isn't real unusual except you want to put the wire into the water. I've done what you say with round submersible pump cable. I'd do a google search for submersible pump cable and see if your local inspector would be ok with that. It will also be rated for direct burial. If you can get it on the bridge It would be a lot better. Be absolutely sure you gfci that wire...

Uf is a no go it is wet rated not submersible rated.
 
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Old 12-05-09, 08:36 PM
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2008 NEC 682 - Natural and Artificially Made Bodies of Water...
http://www.airolator.com/2008%20NEC%20682.pdf

More on the above...
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&s...&aq=f&oq=&aqi=
 
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Old 12-05-09, 09:41 PM
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Thanks Bill and Bruto. So if I'm reading the link to Article 682 right (gee, I wish they'd speak english!) it says I have to use "Extra-hard usage portable powercable listed for both wet locations and sunlight resistance". Is that the same thing as submersible pump cable?

I'm in a very rural location and the local inspector isn't an option or issue. Nonetheless I want to do it right.
 
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Old 12-05-09, 11:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim1957 View Post
Thanks Bill and Bruto. So if I'm reading the link to Article 682 right (gee, I wish they'd speak english!) it says I have to use "Extra-hard usage portable powercable listed for both wet locations and sunlight resistance". Is that the same thing as submersible pump cable?

I'm in a very rural location and the local inspector isn't an option or issue. Nonetheless I want to do it right.
Jim I really didn't want to send you to 682 and 555 because the NEC will not take a stand on wiring under water other than 555.13(B)(3) Where it says..."Wiring over and under navigable water" shall be subject to approval by the authority having jurisdiction... your inspector. Which is why I said in my earlier post check with you inspector and see if he will approve submersible pump cable...it comes flat or round 2 conductor or 3 conductor with insulated ground. You probably won't have a terrible amount of load unless your going to surprise me ..... If you can't get inspector approval then your kinda inbetween a rock and a hard spot as they say.

I'll give you a link to a cable type that will likely be ok in most jurisdictions...... but again without a city or county inspectors approval you are shall I say ..winging it... as to any liability issues.

There are several cables here that are rated for submersible use. You will need to find a local supplier or go to a electrical supply and tell them what your wanting to do and see what they have to offer. I'm not pushing this manufacturer this is just an example....


Submersible Pump Round Cables
 
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Old 12-06-09, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Bruto View Post
Jim I really didn't want to send you to 682 and 555 because the NEC will not take a stand on wiring under water other than 555.13(B)(3) Where it says..."Wiring over and under navigable water" shall be subject to approval by the authority having jurisdiction... your inspector. Which is why I said in my earlier post check with you inspector and see if he will approve submersible pump cable...it comes flat or round 2 conductor or 3 conductor with insulated ground. You probably won't have a terrible amount of load unless your going to surprise me ..... If you can't get inspector approval then your kinda inbetween a rock and a hard spot as they say.

I'll give you a link to a cable type that will likely be ok in most jurisdictions...... but again without a city or county inspectors approval you are shall I say ..winging it... as to any liability issues.
Thanks for the reply Bruto! I wasn't able to locate the entire text of 555 online but I did find the scope. It seems to be for Marina's and Boatyards and specifically excludes Private, noncommercial docking facilities constructed
or occupied for the use of the owner or residents of the
associated single-family dwelling. So it seems I'm really left with 682. At the end of the day I think the liability issue is a large concern but even larger is that I would hate for anyone to get hurt. I also think that having the circuit GFCI protected as you suggested is the best protection and maybe it's worth running it the extra distance to attach it to the bridge.
 

Last edited by Tolyn Ironhand; 12-06-09 at 12:42 PM. Reason: fixed quote
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Old 12-06-09, 10:58 AM
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And might want to put up little signs which say...

CABLE CROSSING

DO NOT ANCHOR


I'm kidding of course!

Real sign...
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2576/...962193c4b3.jpg
 
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Old 12-07-09, 10:54 AM
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"Electrical outlet on island"

And here I thought this thread was going to be about a kitchen. I had my speech about kids pulling down hotplates all ready to go Good luck with the project!
 
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Old 12-07-09, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim1957 View Post
I've been reading this forum for several years and have always been able to find answers from previously asked questions but I've never seen this one.

I have a pond with an island in the middle. I would like to have an electrical outlet on it for Christmas lights, etc. A 120volt 20 amp circuit would be plenty. The island is about 30 ft from the nearest bank and is between 7 & 8 ft. deep. I don't want it visible so I'd rather not have anything overhead.

There is a bridge to the island but while it's sturdy there is a lot of "flex" as you cross it. It would also add another 75 ft to the distance to attach to the bridge.

So my question is, can I bury UF cable to the pond and simply drop it (weighted down) to the bottom of the pond to get across to the island? I don't want to do anything dangerous and I don't want to have to redo it next year.
Jim, Have you thought about maybe going with something flexible and using your bridge. You also might be able to put a receptable or two on the bridge crossing for christmas lights for your bridge or just something else. Let us know!

Thanks!
Jim

 
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Old 12-07-09, 01:12 PM
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One other thing I don't think mentioned is distance. You say the bridge is an extra 75 feet. You don't say how much to the bridge but I'm guessing you are going to need at least #10 maybe #8 or even larger.
 
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Old 12-07-09, 09:38 PM
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Rukkus, yes that was the plan if I attached to the bridge, but the bridge is only 2 or 3 inches above the water and occaisionally it goes underwater by and inch or two so I would have to use the pump cable either way I went. The island is small enough that with one outlet on it I could run an extension cord to any point on it rather easily. I'm leaning towards the pump cable in the most direct route as the only thing that might disturb it is the catfish and the turtles

Ray, the reason I didn't mention the wire size is that I figured the calculators are easily available and frequently referenced here. I will borrow a "wheel" and get a better measurement before buying the wire but I think you're right that it's likely to need a #8
 
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Old 12-07-09, 09:46 PM
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The submersible wire can be #12. The rest though will have to be sized for distance. Since the submersible wire is probably going to be the most expensive you can save a bit by transitioning to it at the point closest to the pond that isn't likely to flood. Pros can fill in the details.
 
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Old 12-07-09, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim1957 View Post
I figured the calculators are easily available and frequently referenced here.
When you use the calculator, you can figure voltage drop with the expected amperage instead of the circuit maximum. For example, if you pull a 20A circuit it is really unlikely that you'll ever use all 20A. Maybe 10A for a weed whacker, so you can use 10A for the calculation. This will probably save you some cash on wire size. If you're only using it for Christmas lights, get some LED lights and you can have thousands of them out there for an amp or two. Also 5% is a completely reasonable voltage drop -- perhaps even lower if you only plan to use lighting.
 
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