Questions for rewiring a garage

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Old 04-13-12, 08:59 AM
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Questions for rewiring a garage

Renovating my attached garage, walls are open. Using the space as part workshop, part car hole. Will fully drywall/insulate the walls when finished.

1. From a code standpoint, can I put receptacles as high or as low as I desire? (ie can I put a double gang box 3 feet off the ground to energize power tools?)

2. Since this environment will be dusty and chaotic, are there any particular plugs/plates/etc I should use?

3. I only have one 20a circuit powering the entire garage, adding another circuit would be too painful. From a code standpoint, is there a restriction on the number of receptacles I can install? Not to get too in-depth but most of the loads will only be temporary (garage door opener, attic fan, power tools) however it would be nice to spread them across 8+ receptacles for accessibility and portability, is this OK?

Any other general recommendations for workshop wiring?

Thanks.
 
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Old 04-13-12, 10:09 AM
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Height is your choice. There is no limit to the number of receptacles. The receptacles need to be GFCI protected either by a GFCI receptacle as the first receptacle or a GFCI breaker. Lights do not need to be GFCI protected.
 
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Old 04-13-12, 10:34 AM
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You CAN install receptacles as high as you desire but they must be a minimum of 18 inches above the finished floor in a garage. If you have any lights that are cord-and-plug connected such as fluorescent "shop lights" utilizing receptacles in the ceiling the ceiling-mounted receptacles DO need to be GFCI protected.

I would strongly urge you to run at least one new circuit for the receptacles in order that your tools are on a different circuit than the lights. It can be dangerous to "trip" a circuit breaker feeding lighting while using your tools.
 
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Old 04-13-12, 12:20 PM
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Furd is correct. They must be above 18" in a garage. I like to put them at 48" for ease of access due to the crap that tends to get piled along walls.
 
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Old 04-16-12, 11:07 AM
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Didn't want to get into it, but I do have a 15a circuit for the lights already but I certainly will extend that circuit to the workshop lights.

One other potential problem I've come across...is there any good way to protect the romex wire while it's inside the wall? I'll be hanging A TON of stuff off the drywall so I'll probably be punching many holes. I'll put the metal-plate stud covers where appropriate but is there a decent way to protect the romex wire stapled inside to the stud? Will a simple plastic/metal conduit do?
 
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Old 04-16-12, 02:36 PM
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I would try and route the cables at heights where you are not likely to install hangers.

If you are going to use conduit it will be easier to use individual conductors.
 
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Old 04-16-12, 02:36 PM
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I do have a 15a circuit for the lights already but I certainly will extend that circuit to the workshop lights.
If you also feed the GFCI protected outlet for your garage door opener from that circuit, that's one more load off the receptacle circuit(s).

is there any good way to protect the romex wire while it's inside the wall? I'll be hanging A TON of stuff off the drywall so I'll probably be punching many holes. I'll put the metal-plate stud covers where appropriate but is there a decent way to protect the romex wire stapled inside to the stud?
If the horizontal wiring is run through holes drilled dead center in each 2X4 stud and the vertical wiring is stapled to the center of each 2X4 stud, Then you shouldn't need any additional protection. What fasteners are you planning to use when you hang things?
 
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Old 04-16-12, 04:16 PM
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You CAN install receptacles as high as you desire but they must be a minimum of 18 inches above the finished floor in a garage.
Furd is correct. They must be above 18" in a garage. I like to put them at 48" for ease of access due to the crap that tends to get piled along walls.

Never heard of such a thing in the NEC.:NO NO NO: Unless the 2011 has it? A particular jurisdiction may be enforcing the rule based on a disability act, but that would be no lower than 15”. PS: 48” is standard around here, but not required. I agree with the 48” rule, and wouldn’t go lower than 48 inches, unless it was absolutely necessary!!
 
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Old 04-16-12, 05:04 PM
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Around me it is enforced similar to a commercial garage because it can be assumed there will be flammable liquid (gasoline) stored in a garage. It has been that way for a very long time.
 
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Old 04-17-12, 05:18 PM
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As an example, I'll be screwing a ton of shelf brackets into the studs. I didn't want to miss a stud and screw right into a cable. Obviously, using shorter screws is the best option there.
 
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Old 04-17-12, 07:49 PM
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I'll be screwing a ton of shelf brackets into the studs. I didn't want to miss a stud and screw right into a cable. Obviously, using shorter screws is the best option there.
I'll assume your studs are nominal 2X4s - that is, 1 1/2" X 3 1/2". You drill a hole for cross-wiring, or you staple for running with the stud, in or at the center of the stud. So that puts the near edge of your 12-2/G cable at 1 1/2" from the face of the stud, at the closest. Then you hang 5/8 " drywall.

Now the near edge of the cable is 2 1/8" from the face of the wall. Do you need screws longer than 2"? Those would give you 1 3/8" into the wood.

And, as pcboss commented earlier,
I would try and route the cables [for cross-wiring] at heights where you are not likely to install hangers.
Like 24" AFF.
 
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