When did Bubble Covers Become Code ?

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  #1  
Old 01-21-13, 07:40 AM
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When did Bubble Covers Become Code ?

Don't get me wrong....I'm all about safety.
For stuff that I know I will be using - in use in wet weather, all my fittings are marico connectors on portable cord OR In Use Wet Weather Rated like the Hubbell Weathertight Safety Shroud Systems.

For in use covers being required on any outdoor outlet, IMO, I would prefer the standard flip tops. The profile of the in uses covers is just really larger. IF doable, I can see setting the *box* back further into the wall so that the cover protrudes less if feasiable would be better. I have seen some *slim* bubble covers as well, but they still protrude way out, IMO.

When the bubble covers become code and what was the moving movement that created this....
 
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Old 01-21-13, 09:12 AM
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I don't know when the bubble covers became a requirement (they still aren't where I live). But I think I know why. If you have something plugged into a receptacle with a flip cover, the cover obviously can't close and water can get in. That's my theory anyway.

I'm with you on the bubble covers. They are seriously ugly.
 
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Old 01-21-13, 11:11 AM
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I've seen them in my dad's "Wiring Simplified" book which is based on the 2002 NEC.
 
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Old 01-21-13, 01:31 PM
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The question is not "When did Bubble Covers Become Code?" Bubble covers aren't required by the NEC. Here's the requirement that in-use covers are designed to meet:
NEC Article 406.8 (B) (1) requires all 15- and 20-ampere, 125- and 250-volt receptacles installed in a wet location to have an enclosure that is weatherproof whether or not the plug is inserted.
I don't know when it was first adopted, but it's been in for awhile - at least since the 2002 cycle, as Justin said.
 
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Old 01-21-13, 05:58 PM
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When the bubble covers become code and what was the moving movement that created this....
The old style weatherproof covers are obviously only weatherproof when they aren't being used. I'm not sure when the NEC started requiring them, but the first ones I ever bought were from Taymac in 1989.
 
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Old 01-21-13, 06:05 PM
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I must have been ignoring them for a very long time...
Granted I probably only have had like 1 exterior outlet in the 3 houses I have owned....

In the current one, it's 2 , one on each side and then a spring project on adding a Inlet for a genset.
But they are just so godawful FUGLY IMO
 
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Old 01-21-13, 06:57 PM
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I think the bubble covers look better than the flippers. Unless you use the plastic ones that yellow after a year.
 
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Old 01-21-13, 07:03 PM
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When I was shopping for inlets, the best one I found was a Midwest unit. In Use rated....I knew it was big, but when I got it,the thing was a monster.

So I did more homework and ended up with a Hubbell system. That is going to be literally almost flush to the wall. Wet weather in use rated.
Cord is made. Just waiting for springtime to do the fish the wire out and pop a hole in the wall...

 
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Old 01-21-13, 08:11 PM
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Arlington makes an in-use box that is recessed into the wall, so it's flush mounted, even when a plug is inserted.
[ATTACH=CONFIG]8174[/ATTACH]

DBHR1W | Product Information
 
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Old 01-21-13, 08:52 PM
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That Hubbell system looks like a shore power cable for a boat!
 
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Old 01-21-13, 08:55 PM
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No Justin....it's for a land yacht
 
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Old 01-21-13, 09:53 PM
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this was the midwest beast of a inlet

 
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Old 01-21-13, 09:57 PM
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Yup.....I've installed quite a few of those.
 
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Old 01-22-13, 05:37 PM
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My installation was done in 2001, under the 1999 code. I used in-use covers but had the electrician add some outlets, and he used the flat spring covers that the inspector didn't flag, so I guess they were OK then.

I agree they're ugly and the best solution is the recessed unit mentioned here or from TayMac. But my wife did paint one of the bubbles to match the surrounding area, and that helped somewhat. So keep that in mind.

Since I have made use of the bubble covers many, many times in inclement weather, the old cliche still applies in my world: Form follows function.

**Edit**
Regarding history, you can probably go back to the 2002 code cycle, find the proposal and see the comments and deliberations. I know I did that long ago on other matters. I don't recall any specifics but there was a lot of info.
 
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Old 01-22-13, 06:11 PM
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Just for a note, I have seen at the big orange store they carry in-use covers that are only about 1" thick. They are expandable for when you have a plug inserted and meet the code requirement. IIRC they are not any more money than the "standard" ones.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]8234[/ATTACH]
 
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Old 01-22-13, 07:51 PM
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I personally think a nice die-cast in-use cover looks far better than your typical flipper cover. Especially after 5 years when the GFCI still tests.
 
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Old 01-23-13, 07:23 AM
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Interesting. When I built my house 3 years ago, I didn't install in-use covers on any of my 3 outside receptacles. We were under NEC 2005 at the time. The inspector didn't flag them.
 
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