Junction boxes in ceiling

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Old 04-19-14, 06:43 AM
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Junction boxes in ceiling

Many of the rooms in my old house have the junctions for the outlets in the ceiling boxes where they octopus down the outlets. Hence some of them are pretty packed....

I plan on doing some renovation and I wonder, is that something that usually gets changed when doing so? Would I be looking to increase the box size and still wire downward or should I be looking to bypass that all together?
 
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Old 04-19-14, 06:55 AM
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Can you post a picture of an example? We can't see what you do.
 
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Old 04-19-14, 07:08 AM
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Any access in the attic where they can be relocated?
 
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Old 04-19-14, 08:01 AM
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The receptacles can be daisy chained to eliminate most of the wires in the ceiling fixture. This should in my opinion be a priority. From first hand observation I've seen the 60 insulation on the wires in the ceiling boxes baked by the incandescent bulbs to the point they are hazardous.

I would use new NM-b from breaker box to the first receptacle and use no attic junction boxes if possible because they can later be forgotten and become a point of mystery failure.
 
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Old 04-19-14, 09:36 AM
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Its one of those things that "is what it is" since it would take major construction to daisy chain.... Im in Chicagoland too so this all has to be in pipe.

When joecaption mentions relocating from attic, what do you mean by that? Like a second box to keep the outlet splices away from the lighting?

Can you post a picture of an example? We can't see what you do.
No photos, easy to picture though, just like most old house I ever seen... the outlets are spliced in the lighting boxes above and are wired from there instead of daisy chaining. I think it harkens back to the day when the only outlets were above at the lights and the old timers kept that practice up into the 50's and 60's (total assumption really).
 
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Old 04-19-14, 10:05 AM
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Conduit makes it advanced DIY but if the inspector will accept Geenfield I'd still stick with my suggestion if you really feel something must be done. If a an assessable attic either up and down instead of across or as suggested by
joecaption1 a combination of attic boxes and a conduit down from each one but nothing really particle that would work other than maintenance as needed comes to mind. Replace wires in the conduit as needed. Anything else is probable too hard to consider as DIY and expense of hiring it done is not justified.

I think it harkens back to the day when the only outlets were above at the lights
I second that guess. Early appliances had screw in Edison base plugs. What size breaker box or do you still have fuses?
 
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Old 04-19-14, 10:12 AM
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The octopus can be kept there while receptacles are gradually changed over to daisy chaining. But the decommissioned live tentacle ends have to be inside boxes or the tentacles themselves removed. The latter requires undoing the wire nuts up in the octopus and deteriorated wire insulation might crumble forcing sudden immediate decommissioning of the whole thing.

A new octopus with a larger box is a possibility, keeping old wiring that is still in good condition. However no extensions may be made to that subcircuit (e.g. added to any tentacles) unless the new sub-subcircuit has proper equipment grounding conductors up through the octopus and down to the panel.

The octopus idea was used way back when when there might have been just one receptacle on each side of the room (if that) and daisy chaining as the alternative was made more complicated by having to go up and around doorways.
 

Last edited by AllanJ; 04-19-14 at 10:32 AM.
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