Running Wires to Can Lights and Under Cabinet Lights

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Old 07-10-12, 11:06 AM
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Running Wires to Can Lights and Under Cabinet Lights

My kitchen/dining room is completely gutted down to the studs right now and I am working on wiring the cans. The cans are mounted where I need them and now I just need to run romex from can to can. What is the proper way to route the cable? I'm in a ranch house so the cans are mounted to the rafters and there just attic space above. Do I run the romex on top of the rafters and of course staple it down, or do I drill though the rafters to run the cable in the middle of them (like running romex between outlets in a wall)?

For under-cabinet lighting, I need to of course stub out romex for when the upper cabinets are installed. How is it recommended to junction all of the under-cabinet lights? I can put a junction box in the attic and run a wire from it to where each light will be. Another thought was to use the can lights as a junction point for the under-cabinet lights. Last thought was maybe using the outlet boxes as the junction points, although I don't know if they would be to code having that many wires in a 20 cubic inch box.

Thanks for your input!
 
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Old 07-10-12, 05:58 PM
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Normally the junction boxes on recessed housings do not have a lot of space so I would not use them for the under cabinet lights. You can daisy chain the connections for the recessed.

As far as undercabinet lighting it is going to depend on the style you install and whether they are low voltage or not.

As long as the receptacle boxes had enough cubic inch capacity you could use them as a junction, but it would not be commonly done.
 
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Old 07-10-12, 07:59 PM
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Running wires can to can can be done on top of the joists if it's not an area of the attic that can be used for walking/storage. If down the road there may be plywood installed for storage, I'd run them through the center of the joists.

If you do decide to use a junction box for the under cabinet lights, remember to ensure it's accessible. Attic is fine if it's accessible, or you can mount it in the back of one of the wall cabinets if it's easier.
 
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Old 07-10-12, 09:36 PM
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Most rafters are not meant to be drilled.
 
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Old 07-11-12, 07:57 AM
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So you would suggest just running the wires above the rafters and stapling? The attic is so short there is no way the wires would be walked on. After the ceiling is drywalled there will be blown in insulation put on top anyways. The reason I was asking was because I wasn't sure if drilling through the rafters was going to majorly hurt the structural integrity. Sounds safest just to go over the top.
 
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Old 07-11-12, 09:36 AM
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I think he means ceiling joists not rafters.
 
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Old 07-11-12, 10:32 AM
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I just wanted to clarify since it does make a difference.
 
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Old 07-11-12, 10:40 AM
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I just wanted to clarify since it does make a difference.
Me too.
An extra 25 characters.
 
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Old 07-12-12, 10:45 AM
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So you would suggest just running the wires above the rafters and stapling?
Yup. As long it's not a walkable area, there's nothing else you need to do.

FYI, rafters are what hold the roof up. Joists hold up the floor/ceiling.
 
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