attic repairs to wiring from squirrel damage


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Old 08-01-14, 10:44 AM
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attic repairs to wiring from squirrel damage

Hello,
I'm new to homeownership and to the DIY forums. I'm in the planning stage of replacing damaged wiring in my attic. I bought a townhouse this spring and I discovered major infestation in the attic a few weeks ago. I hope that I have finished closing the entry points. Now for the wiring and insulation. The entry to the unfinished attic is a ceiling drop-down ladder. The current wiring is likely unmarked romex 14/2 and 14/3. All of the bedroom and bathroom wiring should be on 15 amp breakers but I haven't mapped it out yet. So that would be the first step. Once I've verified the wire gauge, I will cut the existing damaged wire out and add junction boxes above and below the damaged area. I know that the junction box has to be accessible and that generally includes insulation. I'd rather not put the junction boxes too high in the event that squirrels or mice find another way in. I'd like to put the junction boxes inside the joist bay but off the face of the joist with 2x4 and with 2x4 protection below. I could put them on top of the joists with 2x4 guards. The current wiring runs mostly above insulation and diagonally across 2x6 joists. I think at 1-2 spots, the wire runs through a joist but that's not generally the case. Is it code to go through the joist for unfinished attics with ladders? I'd rather not drill holes in my joists. It's an older home. Currently, there are few if any guard boards for those wires running diagonally across the joists. I'd add guard boards for the new wiring that crosses joists. Any other recommendations or corrections? Thanks,
 
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Old 08-01-14, 11:47 AM
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When you're doing repair work, you only need to bring it back to it's original condition. Running boards are not required nor is drilling floor joints.

However, keep in mind that, code is a minimum standard and going above and beyond can sometimes be beneficial.
 
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Old 08-01-14, 12:54 PM
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That makes sense. As long as I can get enough insulation in the bay, I don't mind adding running boards. Thanks for the feedback!
 
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Old 08-01-14, 01:31 PM
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I bought a townhouse this spring and I discovered major infestation in the attic a few weeks ago.
Consider yourself extremely lucky you still have a condo, squirrel infestations and damage like that many times starts a fire.
 
 

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