Requirements for outdoor receptacle


Old 05-15-12, 12:06 PM
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Requirements for outdoor receptacle

Aside from being GFCI protected, are there any code requirements for putting a duplex receptacle on the outside of my vinyl sided home? I have complete access to the exterior wall. Can normal romex wire be used? Any height restrictions? I plan on using a lockable, weatherproof enclosure, mounted directly onto the house.
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Old 05-15-12, 01:21 PM
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Romex can be used as long as it is run inside the wall. Seems like you were asking if it could be run on the exterior?

When you say mounted directly ONTO the house...that makes me think a surface mounted box. If the romex comes in though the back...I think it will be ok, but there are things you will have to do to keep the weatherproof integrity.

Don't ask me for specifics...not an Electrician. I normally tapped off an interior receptacle right beside where I wanted the exterior...used a GFCI and weatherproof box with a nipple to the interior, caulked the nipple through the siding and the box to the siding. Box was mounted to a stud. Not sure if it was kosher...but never a failure.
Old 05-15-12, 01:55 PM
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Yes, a surface mounted conduit at all.
Old 05-15-12, 02:39 PM
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These products look much nicer than a surface mounted box.

Siding Mounting Blocks

Weatherproof Products

The code requires an exterior receptacle both front and rear of a single family house, GFI protected and with a weatherproof in use cover mounted no more than 6 1/2' above grade.
Old 05-15-12, 03:08 PM
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All codes is local; check with the AHJ to see what they require.

That said, here are some tips: You'll need to mount the box to the framing. A penetration near a stud will help with this. In order to preserve the weathertight skin of the house, you may want to use an outlet trim behind the box. I always use a waterproof connector for the Romex, but that's kinda belt-and-suspenders. Run a bead of sillicone around the back of the box - maybe with a gap in the center of the bottom - before you stick it on the wall.

Edit: pcboss just posted links to some blocks or trims. You can probably find what you need for that at the big orange store.
Old 05-16-12, 01:45 PM
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I'll definitely be using a mounting block.

As to "mounted no more than 6 1/2' above grade", 6 1/2' meaning 'feet', correct?
Old 05-16-12, 01:50 PM
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Apostrophe is commonly used to designate feet. The quote mark is commonly use to designate inches. PCBoss use an apostrophe so yes, feet.
Old 05-17-12, 08:34 PM
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One more question...

Does it matter if the electrical box is mounted on the exterior of the house or mounted inside the wall? Which way is recommended? Again, I have complete access to the wall.
Old 05-17-12, 08:56 PM
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Personal opinion - flush mount looks professional. Surface mount looks like an afterthought.
Old 05-18-12, 05:59 PM
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I don't think anyone mentioned this. If installing a GFI receptacle outside, it must be weather resistant.
Old 11-25-12, 01:06 PM
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So just to reiterate: Is it true that, for an outdoor receptacle attached directly to the outside wall of the house, the code does NOT require that the cable going from the interior of the house and terminating inside the waterproof box be of type UF? Ordinary NM is ok then, right?

Old 11-25-12, 01:27 PM
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It is as long as you run directly back to back through the hole. You can't expose NM to the elements, and you should silicone the top and sides of the exterior box against it's wall to further protect it. It will require a bubble type, "in use" cover and exterior box with a gasket between the two. Don't forget the GFCI thingy, too.

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