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Can I instal Airtite IC recessed light without a ground wire?

Can I instal Airtite IC recessed light without a ground wire?

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  #1  
Old 01-07-10, 08:05 AM
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Can I instal Airtite IC recessed light without a ground wire?

I have a 1958 home on Long Island (Nassau county).

I have 11 leaky top hats that I would like to change with either 6 inch Halo (H7RICAT) or Utilitech (UAR700T) air tight Insulation contact fixtures.

Unfortunately my home is only 2 wire - no ground(no green or bare wire - only black and white).

Can I replace the existing and use either companies products without grounding them?

If not the ones I listed, then can I use any?

these are remodel fixtures

thanks

Frank
 
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Old 01-07-10, 08:22 AM
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Yes you can replace existing fixtures on an ungrounded circuit. However, you cannot extend or add to an ungrounded circuit. For safety, I recommend that you install a GFCI device on this (and any other) ungrounded circuit. This is a code-legal remedy for ungrounded wiring.
 
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Old 01-07-10, 08:43 AM
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One small note: If you have Greenfield (steel flex conduit) or BX the steel jacket is your ground.

I suggest using Halo cans. I have heard more than one complaint about the Utilitech cans.
 
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Old 01-07-10, 08:52 AM
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no steel jacket. just plastic. romaex I think it is called.

As for installing a GFCI, how can I do that if there is not ground anywhere?

do you have a link to one as an example?
 
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Old 01-07-10, 08:57 AM
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A GFCI does not need a ground to operate correctly. You just wire it as normal without the ground.
 
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Old 01-07-10, 09:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Tolyn Ironhand View Post
One small note: If you have Greenfield (steel flex conduit) or BX the steel jacket is your ground.

I suggest using Halo cans. I have heard more than one complaint about the Utilitech cans.
What have you heard about the utilitech? Can you elaborate please.

I held the halo at homedepot ( or was it lowes) side by side with the Utilitech and everything looked identical. The metal thickness, folds, hole patterns were all the same. This is why I was thinking of using them since they were cheaper.

Thanks for the heads up....
 

Last edited by Fly2High; 01-07-10 at 09:51 AM.
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Old 01-07-10, 04:47 PM
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I have some bad news for you. The recessed are going to call for 90 degree C rated insulation. Only NM-B will have this rating. NM-B was not made before 1984 or so. You will need to do some rewiring before installing the new fixtures.
 
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Old 01-08-10, 06:17 AM
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Actually, I may have it already. The lighting is clearly a later addition to the house.

the question I have is, does the rating have to be 90deg. C all the way to the panel or just what is used say from the switch to the lights?

From what I see of the 7 recessed fixtures in the bedrooms, all the wire is much newer than the rest of the house. the wire has plastic shielding whereas the rest of the house has what looks like a cloth braid of it.

Frank
 
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Old 01-08-10, 06:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Fly2High View Post
the question I have is, does the rating have to be 90deg. C all the way to the panel or just what is used say from the switch to the lights?
Just the cable that connects to the light needs to be 90 degree, so from the switch to the light is enough.
 
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Old 01-08-10, 09:00 AM
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The biggest problem I see with Utilitech and the other store brands is that they have a very limited selection of trims, usually just white plastic in one or two styles. Halo, Juno, and CE major brands have dozens of different styles and finishes which gives your more options aesthetically. The utilitechs also do not seem to hold the bulb plumb without some fussing and bending of the bracket. If neither of those matter to you, then the store brand is fine.
 
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Old 01-11-10, 05:38 AM
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If I am putting in a remodel fixture, do I still need to be concerned with the temp rating of the wire?

All of the remodel fixtures I have seen have the wiring done in a remote box away from the light box.

If it is the heat of the bulb that requires the higher temp then wouldn't a remodel fixture bypass the need?

thanks

Frank
 
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Old 01-11-10, 06:14 AM
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I looked at some remodelers I have here and the 90 degree requirement was on those also. Even on new construction the wiring compartment is remote from the bulb.
 
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Old 01-11-10, 10:11 AM
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Thanks for checking. Much appreciated.

I think I now have the task of going into the attic and checking what wiring was used.

Let's say, I can no longer read it. Since 1984 or whatever then date is when it became required, is all wire 90deg. C rated or would it be a special purchase?

Is all wire now made 90 deg. C rated?


Also, this is the wire I have at home
http://www.homedepot.com/Electrical-...atalogId=10053

It states :

Type NM-B (nonmetallic-sheathed cable) may be used for both exposed and concealed work in normally dry locations at temperatures not to exceed 90C (with ampacity limited to that for 60C conductors) as specified in the National Electrical Code 1 . NM-B cable is primarily used in residential wiring as branch circuits for outlets, switches, and other loads. NM-B cable may be run in air voids of masonry block or tile walls where such walls are not subject to excessive moisture or dampness. Voltage rating for NM-B cable is 600 volts.

Can I use this in my attic to replace my recessed lighting wire if I need to? If it is the wrong stuff, does Homedepot or Lowes sell it or do I have to go to a building supply for it. Can you recommend some brands/ model#s of wire?

thanks for all the help!!!

Sincerely and with much appreciation,
Frank
 
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Old 01-11-10, 10:36 AM
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If the cable is marked NM-B it will have the 90 degree insulation.
 
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Old 01-11-10, 10:44 AM
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If the attic cable is marked NM then it is only 60 degree wire.

*For those watching at home, this is why all cable must be marked. *
 
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Old 01-12-10, 04:31 AM
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So it should specifically state 90 deg on it?

Will anything else indicate that it is 90 deg. wire?

The wire I have at home is what i used to run a 20 Amp line in my basement. This is not my attic wiring.

What does NM stand for and where would I find other translations for wire identification?


I read this in another forum:
Then run a new NM-B cable from the new box to the fixture box and you will be fine. The B in NM-B cable indicates 90C rating.

also this:

To figure out whether you have 90-degree rated wire, look at the cable jacket or wire insulation. If you have non-metallic sheathed cable (one brand is Romex), you’re in good shape if it has the letters NM-B or UF-B printed on the casing. If your wiring is fed through conduit, look on the wire insulation for the letters THHN or THWN-2. The insulation of wire with a 90-degree rating is usually glossy, but you should rely on the printing to be sure. If these clues don’t help you, either call an electrician or choose another fixture.

And this:

NM cable shall have a 90 degree C insulation (used for derating) but shall be used at the 60 degree C ampacity (334.80).

Is this true?


this is sooo very helpful and such an education for me.

Cool

Really appreciate this.

Frank
 

Last edited by Fly2High; 01-12-10 at 04:54 AM.
  #17  
Old 01-12-10, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Fly2High View Post
Is this true?
All true. The last quote from article 334 is a bit misleading though as it uses terminology directly from the code which confuses the issue in this case.

What does NM stand for and where would I find other translations for wire identification?
NM stands for Non-metallic. Other common cables are underground feeder (UF), metal cable (MC), armored cable (AC / BX), service entrance (SE-R, USE, SE-U). The code book lists them all in the mid 300 articles, just guessing they start about article 330. Wouldn't buy a code book just for that, but if you ever need to kill some time in a library it will give you all you need to know. The cable manufacturer websites have info on the product sheets too -- check southwire, cerrowire.

So it should specifically state 90 deg on it?

Will anything else indicate that it is 90 deg. wire?
The cable should have an NM-B marking if it's rated for 90C. If it looks old and only says "NM" or no markings at all, then chances are it's only rated for 60C. At the time it was made there was only one type of NM, so why label it? Plastic technology improvements in the 80s lead to the development of wire insulation that was thinner, more durable and could withstand higher heat; thus the change from NM to NM-B. Rather than rename the Non-metallic cable, they just tacked the B on the end to indicate the temp rating.

With individual conductors in conduit, each H in the name is worth 15C rating. TN = 60, THN = 75C, THHN = 90C, THWN-2 90C under water.

However mass manufacturing has basically made that system obsolete. They essentially produce only NM-B, UF-B, THWN-2 as it is cheaper to just make a huge quantity of the most versatile wire than to make smaller quantities of various lesser used wires.
 
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Old 01-12-10, 10:31 AM
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That is perfect!!!!!

THANKS!!!

Wonderful information.

I can't wait for the weekend to go into the attic and check out what I have.

Let's pray for a post 1985 job with 90deg. C wire. If I recall, the wiring job was none to pretty and might be good to redo anyway. I think it will be a win - win for me.

I'll let you know if I have some more questions.

Thanks to all who responded and your wealth of information.

I found a website selling Halo can for just under $10/ piece. I think I can afford those. If the wiring looks good, I'll be placing an order soon.

Sincerely,

Frank
 
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