electrical code compliance - wall outlet height

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Old 03-12-13, 01:17 PM
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electrical code compliance - wall outlet height

Is anyone familiar with NY electrical residential code compliance for wall outlet height? For logistical reasons I would like to have the required outlets installed above 8ft on a 13ft wall rather than 16-24inches from the floor. This long concrete wall (with windows and baseboard heating) is used for photography and artwork and the proposed emt coming down from the ceiling would destroy the productive use of the wall. On the side, having the outlets up high would be ideal for portable ceiling photo lights actually.

I would like to be able to point to the code law that would allow an outlet up high if it's possible. So far the assumption is that I should do what every other household does (that the electricians know what would be better for me, etc.)


Is their a maximum height limit? Is it based upon standard residential ceiling heights? Any thoughts most welcome...
 

Last edited by Benham; 03-12-13 at 02:18 PM.
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Old 03-12-13, 01:34 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

Some of the pros may have an answer for you off the top of your head but my suggestion is to talk to the inspector, they're the one you have to satisfy in the end. That said, I would think this would not suffice, since it would be out of the reach of most people. They may not object to receptacles at that height, I believe the objection would be the lack of them at a reasonable height.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 01:48 PM
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Thanks for your feedback - its good way to understand what the logic is for the code, once you said it, it seems obvious. We are looking at ways to squeak the conduit horizontally down low (mess of continuous baseboard, main heating pipes, and low window sills) and have the boxes low, but I don't know about that option either.

There is no way the owner of this building would willingly invite an inspector in beforehand unfortunately, but definitely a logical and efficient solution.

Thanks - and thanks for the welcome mat.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 02:33 PM
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You can put extra outlets almost anywhere you want and at any height. Unfortunately the required outlets cannot be more than 5.5 feet above the floor.
NEC 210.52
No point along the floor line of the wall can be more than 6 feet from an outlet. So, they can be 12 feet apart and as low as you want. Some baseboard heaters are factory made with outlets in them to meet this requirement. And outlets can be in the floor within 18 inches of the wall to meet this requirement.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 02:48 PM
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What about a Plugmold Hard Wired Multi outlet strip?

http://www.legrand.us/~/media/533534...881ee0c61.ashx

I wouldn't want to mount it on top of baseboard heat. May be a building code violation. But on the floor just in front of the baseboard might be ok.
 

Last edited by Glennsparky; 03-12-13 at 03:07 PM.
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Old 03-12-13, 03:43 PM
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Just had a reply to your first post go a-wall, so will try again.

Thank you for the stats and code reference - extremely helpful and I'm now getting up to speed.

- 12ft distance is a help (we've been told every 10ft and it makes a difference here)
- Floor outlets aren't an option unfortunately: cast concrete/wet

As you suggest, I think the solution will be to install it low and not in front of heating. Conduit could run in front of fixed pipes that run along the base of the wall (the baseboard is stacked above them with no room before the window sills). The conduit and boxes would be enough off the floor for toe space/cleaning underneath. We could come from the sides and eliminate a full-length. This dilemma occurs on two walls (a corner).

Hoping the heating pipes won't pose an issue, there must be some rating/distance to work with.

ps - outlet strips look great, but not an option this time ($$).

Thanks again -
 
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Old 03-12-13, 04:00 PM
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The spacing and heights only apply to residential. If this is a commercial space you should have greater leeway.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 04:30 PM
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12' spacing only applys to kitchen, family room, dining room, living room, parlor, library, den, sun room, bedroom, recreation room, or similar room or area of dwelling units. So if it is an unfinished basement then you are in the clear.
 

Last edited by Astuff; 03-12-13 at 07:10 PM.
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Old 03-12-13, 04:46 PM
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PCBoss -
It's both at the same time... IMD (interim multiple dwelling) going through a conversion to eventual residential, so complying to residential seems safest, but I would have liked the leeway.
The room is commercial(photo/sculpture studio) and living use simultaneously (not a basement).


AStuff - What spacing does apply if not the 12ft as noted in NEC 210.52?


Thanks
 
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Old 03-12-13, 07:28 PM
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Sorry, I screwed up do and don't.

If it can be looked at as being used as a living space then you need to treat it as such. Especially if the occupancy permit lists it as living space.

If in doubt, find out who will do the inspections and talk to them.
 
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Old 03-12-13, 08:17 PM
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Habitable rooms have a rule commonly called the 6/12 rule. Basically any spot on a wall, measured along the perimeter, need a receptacle within 6' of the doorway and then no more than 12' between them. Walls 2' or greater would also get a receptacle. Special rules apply for bathrooms, kitchens and laundrys.
 
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Old 03-13-13, 02:13 AM
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Hoping the heating pipes won't pose an issue, there must be some rating/distance to work with.
We go by a standard called Ambient Temperature. That is, stick a thermometer where the install will go. What's the highest temperature that area will get?

EMT has no temperature limit, wires and receptacles do. All wires and receptacles are rated for at least 140 degrees F (60 C) Ambient. Most wires are also rated for 167 degrees F (75 C), receptacles you'd have to check the package insert. The last rating is 194 degrees F (90 C). Specific wires and receptacles are rated that high. Don't go there.

Some foam insulation between the pipes may solve any problems.

Restrictions exist for metal pipes (and/or boxes) that touch. Aluminum can touch aluminum. Ferrous (all types) can touch ferrous. AL cannot touch Fe. They are dissimilar metals.
 
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Old 03-13-13, 06:17 AM
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Your questions indicate to me that you are not a licensed professional. So why are you doing work in a structure that belongs to someone else?? That is most likely illegal.
 
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Old 03-28-13, 03:15 PM
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To:
Mitch17
Glennsparky
pcboss
AStuff

Apologies for a delayed response... THANK YOU for your expert advice and education. You've all been a terrific help.

The electricians came through to do the work and I was completely relieved to be prepared and able to converse intelligently with them as an informed client. My idea of placing the line low with appropriate distance from heating was accepted by them as the best solution. All parties involved are pleased with the results; landlord, electricians, and me.

All ready for inspectors!

THANK YOU AGAIN!
 
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Old 03-28-13, 03:39 PM
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Glad it worked out for you, and thank you for the feedback!
 
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Old 03-28-13, 03:56 PM
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Yes, thank you for posting back with results, we always like to know what they are but get them pretty seldom.
 
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