Low voltage transformer placement

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  #1  
Old 05-19-15, 09:25 PM
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Low voltage transformer placement

Hi,

I will soon be mounting a new transformer for some landscape lighting - from the attached picture, I would like to mount just inside the fence so that it can't be seen from the front yard. The transformer comes with a 5 1/2 foot cord, so perhaps I could bury the cord a few inches down and have it come up on the side of the house so that I could plug into a GFI outlet. If I were to do this, should I enclose the cord in conduit underground and up the side of the house? Thanks

Dan
 
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Old 05-19-15, 10:12 PM
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he transformer comes with a 5 1/2 foot cord, so perhaps I could bury the cord a few inches down
No you can't. the cord isn't rated for that.You need to place a receptacle with an in-use cover close enough to plug in the transformer. If you use UF-b cable to the receptacle it must be 24" deep unless it is GFCI protected then it can be one foot deep.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 05-20-15 at 09:23 PM.
  #3  
Old 05-20-15, 04:22 PM
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To minimize energy loss due to voltage drop, the transformer should be located as close to the lights as is possible.

For lights in a widely spaced array or lineup, the transformer should be at or near the middle.
 
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Old 05-20-15, 08:40 PM
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I see in the NEC now that direct burial cable or connectors must be 24 inches deep, so thanks for pointing that out. I just don't want the transformer to be visible, so my options may be:

a) locate just inside the fence if I have enough cord to bury 24 inches deep and come up alongside the foundation to plug into a GFI outlet yet to be installed
b) locate by the front corner of the house and put the GFI outlet there
c) locate behind a bush in the front yard, which would be adjacent to the front of the house, and install the GFI outlet there.

It's only going to be a small 75 VOLT transformer but regardless I would like to conceal if possible.
 
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Old 05-20-15, 09:22 PM
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locate just inside the fence if I have enough cord to bury 24 inches deep and come up alongside the foundation to plug into a GFI outlet yet to be installed
No. As stated the cord is not rated for direct burial.
It's only going to be a small 75 VOLT transformer
No such critter for landscaping. Probably 12 volts.
I just don't want the transformer to be visible
Why?
I see in the NEC now that direct burial cable or connectors must be 24 inches deep
Except for special connectors all connections are usually above ground. As to the 24" there are exceptions as I wrote:
If you use UF-b cable to the receptacle it must be 24" deep unless it is GFCI protected then it can be one foot deep.
The section of the NEC you refer to is in regard to cable rated for direct burial. It is not about cords.
 
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Old 05-21-15, 05:16 PM
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Could you live with mounting your transformer inside the house and run your cable out?
If you're willing to install a new receptacle in a less visible area though, that would be the best route to go.
 
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Old 05-22-15, 06:46 AM
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Mr. A, the transformers I have seen all say to only be used outside. Also the cord cannot be run through the wall.
 
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Old 05-22-15, 11:41 AM
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Not sure why you think the transformer is ugly but build a bird house with a removable front large enough to hold the transformer and the receptacle. Mount on a post such as use for yard post lights. Sleeve your 120v power in a PVC conduit inside the post to the receptacle. The LV wire can be just dropped down the inside of the post to the ground.
 
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Old 05-22-15, 10:12 PM
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Thanks for the helpful responses, much appreciated. It's a 75 watt VOLT brand transformer, not a 75 volt transformer, sorry for the confusion. When you say sleeve the 120v power inside conduit from the post to the receptacle, I assume you mean the transformer cord, correct?

I don't think the transformer itself is ugly, just don't want it to stick out in the yard is all. I'd love to just mount to the side of the vinyl but I've heard that's a bad idea so gonna do a small post. Since the transformer only weighs 4 pounds I would think a 4 x 4 post wouldn't be necessary as it might be for some larger transformers. I want something solid but on the small side as far as dimensions. Any thoughts? Thanks

Dan
 
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Old 05-22-15, 11:03 PM
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Since the transformer only weighs 4 pounds I would think a 4 x 4 post wouldn't be necessary as it might be for some larger transformers. I want something solid but on the small side as far as dimensions. Any thoughts?
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http://www.amazon.com/Arlington-Indu.../dp/B002W6ZP0K

When you say sleeve the 120v power inside conduit from the post to the receptacle, I assume you mean the transformer cord, correct?
No. The UF-b cable the runs to the receptacle in the bird house. The cord stays in the faux bird house.

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Dark gray=PVC conduit
Light gray=UF-b cable
Black=transformer cord
Not shown low voltage cable from transformer.

If the birdhouse protects the receptacle from rain it does not need an in-use cover.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 05-22-15 at 11:40 PM.
  #11  
Old 05-23-15, 12:15 AM
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Mr. A, the transformers I have seen all say to only be used outside. Also the cord cannot be run through the wall.
I won't pretend I know all about landscaping transformers so I will take your word for it. I was referring to his cable heading out to his lights running into the house though. Sleeve it up into an LB or something.
 
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