Help wiring another pull string light in the basement

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Old 03-16-18, 03:27 PM
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Help wiring another pull string light in the basement

Hi. I have a little work bench area in the basement and want a light over my work area. There a small ceramic pull light about 4 feet away that I was planning on branching out of, BUT it's got 3 14/3 wires going in and then some other utility that I think is connected to the phone. You can see that there's already about 5 #14 wires under one BLACK wirenut. I punched out the side hole and you can see my new "branch" coming out of the hole, but after removing the wirenut I had a "better idea" of a separate junction.

Would it be ok to add another junction at the wires in the second pic below that I could come out of to my new light(s)? Those wires come out of the aforementioned ceramic pull light, etc. You can see the light to the right of the wires.

If I add another junction at those 2 wires, do I have to put BOTH wires inside the junction or just one? Do I just cut the wires and make pigtails inside the new junction? Of course after turning OFF the power !!

Also, these are 14/3 obviously. Can I connect a 14/2 to 14/3? Sorry, it's been a while since I've done electrical. The 14/2 is my new wire that'll come out of the new junction.


Here's a pic of the "mess" inside the box:
 
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Old 03-16-18, 03:56 PM
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The attachment to the outside of the box on the right side of the photo is a door bell transformer. You will need to add a box connector to secure the added cable on the left side. A box extender added to the box would give more space in the box.
 
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Old 03-16-18, 08:15 PM
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Thanks, but I'm also concerned putting 6 wires together. I did buy another medal junction box today. Is it ok to branch off of one of the wires in my 2nd photo down?

I'm thinking of putting both wires (bottom picture) through the new junction, BUT only cutting into one of them for the "branch out" to my new light.

Another thing I just thought about. Those two wires in the bottom picture go to a light outside the door and an outlet near the door. Could I just branch out of say the outlet? It's one of those old medal box kinds. Maybe it's just better to add another junction box?
 
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Old 03-17-18, 07:18 AM
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Yes, you need to install a larger box. I recommend a 4"x4" deep (2 1/8") box with a square to round mud ring. You also need to use a connector when installing a cable in a 1/2" KO. Lastly the wires you installed in the picture are too short. They need to extend a minimum of 3" past the opening of the box, or about 6", or more, total length.
 
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Old 03-17-18, 11:51 AM
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Thanks, but I'm going to install another junction box at the wires in the second pic down instead and leave the old one alone. I'm just wondering, since the wires are next to each other on the joist, should I cut and put them both in the new junction box?
 
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Old 03-17-18, 08:05 PM
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Only if you need to access the two circuits. If you don't then leave the unneeded cable alone.
 
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Old 03-17-18, 09:10 PM
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They both come from the same circuit. They're tied together in the aforementioned junction box in the top pic. One goes up stairs and one over to a lightswitch/light and an outlet. Thanks, I only need access to one cable to branch out.

I can splice in to the left of the "pair" (in bottom pic) on the bottom romex. I purchased a standard depth 4 inch medal box since this cable has 14/3 and a ground that is used in the circuit.

I would assume that in the new box after making the splice and pigtail out, that I should attach the ground from that circuit to the medal in the new junction box?

I'm also going to go out from the new junction with a 14/2 cable to my new light and maybe an outlet or two. Is it ok to branch out with 14/2 if 14/3 is going into the new junction? I only need a black and white for my branch out light and outlet. Sorry for "dumb" questions, but I haven't done electrical in a while and it's still sort of new to me,

One more question: The cable is labeled 14/3 (I'm pretty sure), but I only see black and white in the junction box in my top picture. Should I see a red wire also?
 

Last edited by Brian1900; 03-17-18 at 09:29 PM.
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Old 03-18-18, 06:37 AM
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FYI you can only have 10 #14 in a 1 1/2" 4x4 box. (counting the grounds only once)

Is it ok to branch out with 14/2 if 14/3 is going into the new junction?
skjdfhk
Yes, that is fine. You can leave one wire in the box unused if needed.

Should I see a red wire also?
\k;ldks
Not necessarily. Most of th eNM cables I have seen will be marked "14/2 plus ground" but it is possible that the manufacture just marked it 14/3 like they do on SO/SJO cord.

Sorry for "dumb" questions, but I haven't done electrical in a while and it's still sort of new to me,
sddsfsdf
The only dumb question is the one that was not asked.
 
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Old 03-18-18, 09:22 PM
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Thanks for all of your help!

Another question.

When I cut (splice) the cable in my bottom pic, will I have enough slack inside the junction box? Will 2inches (approx. that's all I think I'll have) be enough to strip the sheath and then connect pigtails?

I know that I'm supposed to leave 1/4 inch of sheathing inside the box.

Do I have to connect the ground from the spliced cable to my new box (medal) that will be the "branch" out to my new light and maybe an outlet? Or do I just connect the ground wire to the ground in the nm going out to my pull light?

The pull light is mounted to a plastic box with no ground, but I would assume that if I continue the circuit through the plastic pull light box to make an additional outlet (recepticle plug outlet) I would need a ground at the outlet, so I'd have to connect the ground thought this plastic box.

Actually I'm a little rusty on the whole ground thing (as you may notice lol). Do I just have to worry about connecting ground to the box wherever ground is required and not have to worry about where the ground wire eventually leads in a circuit?

I mean with say an plug outlet that I'm installing. Obviously there will be a cable coming out of the box that I install there. Do I just tie the ground from the outlet to the cable or does it also have to touch the box that the outlet's mounted to? I would assume that in the case of plastic boxes that the outlet may be mounted to it wouldn't need be.
 

Last edited by Brian1900; 03-19-18 at 12:00 AM.
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Old 03-19-18, 05:12 PM
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Ok it worked! After three 1/2 hour trips to Home Depot (kept forgetting stuff!) and a couple hours I put in a new junction box and branched off to my new light! Got so much light over there now! I even had to run a new 14/2 cable from the junction to the back porch light and outlet because I accidentally didn't give myself enough slack to reach my new junction box for the old nm cable that was from 1970's anyways.

I didn't have enough time to connect the new cable that goes from the new junction box to the backporch light so I just left it hanging with a yellow wirenut over the end. No one is going to touch it, hope that's ok? I'm going to connect it first thing tomorrow.

Also can anyone answer if my using Yellow wire nuts for 3 #14 wires is ok? You can see them in the pic. They seemed to work fine. I normally don't like to use black tape, but the black wire was a teensy bit exposed after twisting the wirenut all the way tight and I didn't want to risk leaving it.

How does it all look? Sorry, I realize it's minor to a lot of people, but I'm very proud of myself, although it took me 4 hours in total LOL!!

Also I didn't attach to ground wires to the new metal junction box. Is that ok? I figured if a box wasn't there they would just be connected to each other anyways?

You can notice the difference in color with the new cables and the ones on the right from 1970.
Oh, and I did end up putting a wirenut on the ground I just wanted to show my twisting job.


Thanks all!
 
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Old 03-19-18, 05:42 PM
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It looks OK, but you have a few things to fix. (Sorry )

You need to connect a ground wire to the metal box to ground it. This needs to be done using a green ground clip, or green ground screw, and a short piece of wire. (pigtail) Connect to the other ground wires and cap with a wirenut.

The wires from the old cable appear to be too short. Code requires the wires to extend past the opening of the box a minimum of 3". Normally I leave at least 6" of free conductor available.

You have installed the NM cable connectors backwards. The locknut goes on the inside of the box.

You should not need any tape on your wire nut. If the wires are striped too long then cut the bare conductor so the wire nut covers all of the bare conductor.
 
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Old 03-20-18, 03:47 AM
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Thanks for the corrections. All the wires extend "at least 3 inches into the box". I folded the wires to the right, maybe that's why they look short. I made sure that all the wires were about 5 inches or so past the inside.

I'll double check today, cause I'm not finished with it.

I think I also need red wire nuts because the yellow said 2 #14's max I think. They fit though, but I think I'll change them out to be safe.

Where do you get green screws? How come it doesn't come with the box?

I'm going to make all the corrections today, Thanks! I think I'll pull 6 inches into the box like you mentioned.
 

Last edited by Brian1900; 03-20-18 at 04:08 AM.
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Old 03-20-18, 04:09 AM
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Old 03-20-18, 06:47 PM
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How come it doesn't come with the box?
kjhiuh
Because many wiring methods when using metal boxes do not require you to bond the box to the grounding path. They are already grounded when properly installed. Examples: EMT, MCAP, AC, FMC (when 6' or less and 20 amp or less)
 
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Old 03-21-18, 04:58 PM
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Guys I got it done and it works nicely.

I used the red IDEAL wire nuts and pretwisted 3 wires together. I pulled about 6 inches of wire through the holes and turned around the wire holder things.
 
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Old 04-16-18, 10:08 AM
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Well had a plumber over today and he said "If it were me I'd just replace the section that is leaking" "Copper pipe lasts for 60 years and the rest looks good". He wants $250 to replace about 2 feet I think.
 
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