Size/Gauge for Temp wire


Old 04-16-14, 09:32 AM
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Size/Gauge for Temp wire

I just built a garage this week. The power company is dragging their feet, they promised the service to the garage would be connected last week, now its going to be 2-4 weeks. I need to be moving stuff into this building now. The only thing in the building will be a few CFL lights, a fridge, and I would like to run a small AC very limited, only at night, and only 1 or 2 nights per week but doubt that will be possible. I have a breaker box about 250 ft away from the garage. Could I run a temp wire from the breaker box to the garage for very light duty and what size wire/breaker would I need? Would it be possible to double tap if needed just for this temp scenario?
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Old 04-16-14, 11:23 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wet side of Washington state.
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Your current draw is fairly small but the distance is the killer. Several non-code ways to do it but 250 feet-plus of cable will cost a pretty penny no matter what size or type. If you had a use for a super heavy duty extension cord I would suggest a 250 foot box of 10-3 type SOOW cable but the cost of that would likely be in the neighborhood of $300. You could use a type NM cable (standard cable used in wiring houses) but the cost would still be close to or exceeding $100 and it would be the worst of the non-code compliant "temporary" methods.

Honestly, if there is any way that you can tough it out until the utility does its thing would be the best. Because of the distance I would use nothing less than #10 gauge copper and protect it with nothing larger than a 20 ampere circuit breaker.
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