BX vs Romex 10-2, 75 foot run

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  #1  
Old 01-17-14, 07:19 PM
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BX vs Romex 10-2, 75 foot run

Tomorrow morning, the sledge hammer swings and I will gut the upper bathroom.
I want to use this chance to run some 10-2 up to a wall panel (sub-panel) on the second floor that powers all the ceiling lights and some wall plugs.

BX is about half the cost of Romex, on a 75 foot run, the savings is about $60.00.

Is there any reason why I should not go with the BX over the Romex?

The routing is along the basement wall in the ceiling with easy access, up a service chamber to the second floor, into the bathroom wall to the second floor ceiling, to the shared bathroom/storage room wall to a new panel I will install to remove an old 2 fuse panel in favor of a Square D unit.
 
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Old 01-17-14, 07:51 PM
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10-2 will give you one circuit. I'd run 8-3 w/G romex to a small subpanel. You said you have two circuits there now, 8-3 will provide you enough power for easily 4 to 6 circuits. At the minimum, I'd use 12-3 w/G for a multiwire branch circuit (2 - 120 volt 20 amp circuits). There is no need to use #10 wire for individual circuits.

Is there any reason why I should not go with the BX over the Romex?
I wouldn't use it for residential work unless I had special circumstances. MC or AC cable requires special connectors and can only be used with metal boxes.
 
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Old 01-17-14, 08:17 PM
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It would be odd that 10/2 AC/MC/BX would be less expensive than Romex as normally Romex is the one of the least expensive wiring methods. Are you sure the numbers were correct?
 
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Old 01-17-14, 08:58 PM
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I would just run a MWBC or two cables to the bathroom. You would need clearance if you installed a panel.
 
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Old 01-17-14, 09:26 PM
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I never though about running one wire and expanding the existing config.
I wish I had posted earlier. :-(
CasualJoe, Not sure why I never thought of that, I could be missing a great chance to move the breaker for the new line in the bathroom from the basement to my daughter's apt on the top level.

I have already installed a new 15 amp breaker and run wire to the bathroom to install a GFCI as there is no plug in the bathroom now.


The 10-2 was to replace a 30amp line in, that splits to two 15 amp circuits (front half and rear half of the home).
I have already replaced the same unit and the wiring to it on the lower level.

The bathroom shares a wall with the storage room and the panel has a fuse that is loose and wobbly, so I want to swap it out for a box with breakers since I am 95 percent of the way there anyway while tearing down the backside wall.

I guess I could install a 40 amp breaker on the main panel, bring 8-3 up, install a third breaker in the wall panel and have the bathroom GFCI running to the new upper level wall panel?


PCboss

You would need clearance if you installed a panel.
Sorry PCboss, I don't understand the reference to clearance?


Tolyn Ironhand
It would be odd that 10/2 AC/MC/BX would be less expensive than Romex as normally Romex is the one of the least expensive wiring methods. Are you sure the numbers were correct?
I was surprised too, it is almost $2.50 per meter (3 feet) less for the BX. I need about 22 meters, so approx 55 dollars less.
 

Last edited by Kiton; 01-17-14 at 09:44 PM.
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Old 01-18-14, 12:12 AM
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I agree , I would run 8/3 W/G or , If I could afford it , 6/3 W/G .

I would use BX or Romex , or what ever is cheapest . The metal connectors for the BX is a minor issue .

If you run # 10 , at least run 10/3 W/G .

I would have to brush up on the requirements for arc-fault protection .

God bless
Wyr
 
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Old 01-18-14, 01:07 AM
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Not sure about the CEC, but the NEC would require a 20 amp circuit for the bathroom receptacle.

Panels need space around to to ensure a safe work zone.
 
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Old 01-18-14, 06:05 AM
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The clearance of a panel is a space 30" wide in front of it and 36" deep clear space. The space is not required to be centered on the panel.

I hope this old fuse panel is not located in the bathroom, electrical panels cannot be in a bathroom or clothes closet.
 
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Old 01-18-14, 08:00 AM
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Thank you very much guys, I will re think this today as I take town the walls.
The idea of having her bathroom breaker bundled with the panel in her storage room is a great suggestion. The room is 6'x10' and the panel has plenty of clearance around it.

In an ideal world, how many amps total would you recommend I be feeding the upper wall panel if it needs 30 now, plus the new bathroom line, and maybe one more 15a for future expansion?
 
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Old 01-18-14, 08:02 AM
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CasualJoe, Not sure why I never thought of that, I could be missing a great chance to move the breaker for the new line in the bathroom from the basement to my daughter's apt on the top level.
A small 8 circuit MLO loadcenter is not expensive. PCboss also had a good idea. You have 2 circuits there now, but you could just pull two 12-3 cables up and you'd have wiring good for 2 future circuits.

pcboss
I would just run a MWBC or two cables to the bathroom. You would need clearance if you installed a panel.
If you don't have enough spaces in your main panel to add 4 new circuits, you could go the subpanel route. Where is the 2 circuit fuse panel located, is that location suitable for a new subpanel?

Tolyn Ironhand
The clearance of a panel is a space 30" wide in front of it and 36" deep clear space. The space is not required to be centered on the panel.
Think about it.
 
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Old 01-18-14, 08:06 AM
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In an ideal world, how many amps total would you recommend I be feeding the upper wall panel if it needs 30 now, plus the new bathroom line, and maybe one more 15a for future expansion?
I mentioned 8-3 cable because I thought 40 amps would be more than enough. That's 40 amps on each leg, so in theory, you could have as many as four fully loaded 20 amp circuits and never trip a breaker. Not likely you would ever fully load any of them.
 
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Old 01-18-14, 08:47 AM
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I agree with Joe. 30 amps (10/3) would likely work but 40 amps (8/3) will give you a little room for expansion later.
 
  #13  
Old 01-18-14, 11:04 AM
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BX can be used with 2104 boxes (Canada at least). I don't recommend it though. Once you board the wall if you ever break a wire you are in for a world of frustration trying to pull in slack, strip the armor, get an anti-short in, and get the wire pushed back up.
Loomex/Romex is far easier to work with if you have problems in the future.
Also speaking of the "special" connectors and metal boxes joe mentioned, even in a residential setting using loomex I recommend using deep 4x4 boxes with a raco ring and loomex connectors for your switch boxes and GFI. This leaves a lot more room for the GFI, and any potential motion sensor switches/dimmers you may wish to install in the future.
 
  #14  
Old 01-18-14, 06:40 PM
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Thanks guys,

Monday I will get a 40amp and run 8-3. This is one of the very few pleasant detours I have taken so far during these Renos!

I could not find a reference to 15a or 20a for CEC while searching google, only this paragraph from the City of Calgary. But if I am going to bring 8-3 from the basement, I will go with a 20 as her hair dryer alone must suck up 1200 watts!
 
  #15  
Old 01-18-14, 08:15 PM
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You can choose between 15A or 20A in the bathroom. Just make sure its GFCI protected and tamper resistant.
 
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