Electrician Removed Cable Clamps

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  #1  
Old 11-30-11, 10:32 AM
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Electrician Removed Cable Clamps

I had a light switched moved. I put in a brand new plastic gangbox for 3 switches. The previous box was also plastic. The wires were run one each through the plastic cable clips in the original.

The electrician just did the work of installing the wiring into the new plastic box. I didn't see what he did until he left. He completely knocked out two of the cable clamps and ran 14-3 and 14-2 wire though each slot. So two wires per slot with 2 slots set up this way. He stapled within 8" underneath the box. There's a pretty wide gap now in the back with the missing clips. The holes he created could probably hold 6 wires each because they're so big.

1) Is this safe and to code? With these big holes, any chance of sparking getting out of the box and starting a fire, should some sort of spark ever happen?

2) Shouldn't he have left the cable clips and put one wire through each clip?

Since he cut the wires to fit this new configuration, I can't replace the box and run the wires through the clips since two of the wires would now be too short to fit.
 
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Old 11-30-11, 12:03 PM
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Multi-gang boxes are supplied with cable clamps designed for one cable each. The clamp tabs should not have been broken out.

The too large hole could allow an arc to enter the wall cavity and potentially cause problems.

Since you paid someone to do this they should have done it correctly. I would call them and tell them you want the work done properly.
 
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Old 11-30-11, 12:34 PM
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Thanks for the fast reply.

I called immediately after he left and the supervisor said it's fine. I then found reference to the code that requires clamping of anything over 1-gang. So I called back with that info and they say they'll come back. Even I as an amateur can see that big holes in the gang box can't be a good thing. He also stapled the wires pretty hard. I've read that they should slip a little. Now I'm wondering about just calling someone else and eating the cost of the first company. But I'll give him a shot at making it right first.

I have to say that even though this is DIY, I appreciate this site exists. It pays to know how things should be, even if paying someone to do it.
 
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Old 11-30-11, 12:40 PM
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The supervisor is full of it. A code enforcement official would not allow the box to stay as it is.
 
  #5  
Old 12-02-11, 06:19 AM
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So here's an update. I got my small 30" x 82" bit of framing permitted. The permit cost almost as much as the materials for such a small job. The county said they will come inspect twice - once at rough in, then when done, both framing and electrical.

So as I planned the inspection day, I discovered this electrician didn't permit the electrical job. I called the supervisor back. They claim they submitted it to the wrong county. But considering they only charged $131 and the cost of a permit appears to be around $57, I wonder if I'm being told the truth. I asked this company at least 5 times if this was being permitted and legal. I asked when I scheduled it. I asked the installer who came out wearing his professional-looking shirt with their logo on it. I asked the supervisor. Every time, "Yes." I thought something was up when they told me no inspection was needed and to just finish the sheetrock. This is my first time with electrical work. I'm learning fast that hiring someone doesn't mean it's necessarily going to be better than what I'd do myself.

Am I now on the hook for getting the electric permitted myself? Do I have any recourse if the company doesn't file the permit, like complaining to the county? They are licensed and even have awards. I'm a bit stupified at what's going on here. The whole reason I paid them to hook up the switch, even though I could've done it, was so that I'd be covered fully if something 1 in a million happened and the house caught on fire.
 
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Old 12-02-11, 09:29 AM
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I think a call to the permitting office is in order. In some areas only licensed contractors can pull permits, while others allow homeowners to pull their own permit.
 
  #7  
Old 12-02-11, 06:46 PM
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I thought something was up when they told me no inspection was needed and to just finish the sheetrock. This is my first time with electrical work.
Since it hasn't been inspected yet, I certainly hope you haven't paid them.
 
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