Wiring in a Divided Attic (part Accessible)

Reply

  #1  
Old 07-03-14, 04:16 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2
Wiring in a Divided Attic (part Accessible)

Hello,

I bought a new home in Northern California two years ago. I've been slowly improving the wiring (previous homeowner was a DIYer without a lot of sense), but I've run into a big issue.

The attic (one-story ranch-style home) is divided into two sections by framing and a layer of drywall. The larger section is only accessible via a scuttle hole in the hallway, and a crawl hole in the aforementioned drywall. The smaller section (above a converted garage, hence the wall in the attic) has permanent pull-down stairs and a little storage. The hole between the two is cut in the drywall, which allows one to (just barely) crawl between the two attic sections.

My question: Does the entire attic count as "accessible" because of the pull-down stairs in the smaller section? Do I need to follow wiring codes to protect runs of romex in the entire attic, or just in the "accessible" section? I've been over the code, but I can't find any information about divided attics.

Thanks!
-Nathan
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 07-04-14, 07:11 AM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,383
My question: Does the entire attic count as "accessible" because of the pull-down stairs in the smaller section?
My opinion is that the entire attic is accessible because you can access both parts of the attic.
 
  #3  
Old 07-04-14, 07:20 AM
bigboypete's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 218
accessible doesn't always mean convenient. In fact you could have blown in insulation covering every box and raceway in the attic (not knob and tube) and it would still be considered accessible.
 
  #4  
Old 07-04-14, 10:37 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2
Thanks for the replies!

I thought the same thing when I started working in the attic. However, that argument doesn't apply to scuttle holes -- those are also "accessible but not convenient" -- and yet those do not require wiring protection (except within 6 ft of the hole).

Is there actual language in the code that covers my situation, or is it going to be 100% up to the discretion of the inspector? Is there a definition of "accessible" in the wiring code?

For what it's worth, I could screw a sheet of drywall or plywood over the horizontal access into the larger attic section, thus making it no longer accessible... maybe?
 
  #5  
Old 07-04-14, 11:59 AM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,383
Is there actual language in the code that covers my situation, or is it going to be 100% up to the discretion of the inspector? Is there a definition of "accessible" in the wiring code?
Why don't you consult your local AHJ, they may have amendments to the NEC that none of us are aware of (assuming you are in the U.S.).
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes