Adding an outlet 1 of 2

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Old 12-10-20, 08:11 AM
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Adding an outlet 1 of 2

Is adding an outlet a diy job? This room in the basement is 20x10. Only has 2 outlets. I’d like to add one on this wall. There is power in the adjacent closet (light).

there is a corner shower on the other side of the light and along that wall. Is there any reason why there are so few outlets? None on the two exterior walls and none on this wall pictured.

Does a new box need to be on a stud or are there re-work boxes that can be mounted without a stud?

anything else to be aware of? Or is it just cut a hole,, run the wire and tie in?

my other addition is in the garage where I want to install an outlet next to an existing 3 way switch. Instead of buying an expensive and rare 3 way switch/receptacle combo.








 

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12-10-20, 03:12 PM
pattenp
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There is no NEC restriction that says a receptacle outlet is not to be on the same circuit as lights. Obviously if the lighting circuit is 15A then any receptacles added on to that circuit will be limited to 15A and may as well be wired with #14 wire. If the lighting circuit is 20A then the added receptacles could be wired with #12 and would be 20A as is the lighting circuit. It is just not a preferred wiring method to have lights and receptacles on the same circuit.
The only caveat is adding a receptacle in an area that is required to be 20A by the NEC such as small appliance receptacles in a kitchen.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 08:20 AM
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Short answer is yes you can. But IIRC tapping off a light fixture for power is not to code. You should be getting power from a circuit that is dedicated to outlets and not lights or a mixture of the two.
You can get an electrical box that can be inserted into drywall between studs. Does not need to be attached to a stud.
In the garage the same situation. You should not be drawing power from the three way switch. You may need to change out the box to accommodate additional power lines for the outlet. Or instatll another box next to switch box.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 09:43 AM
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Is there any reason why there are so few outlets? None on the two exterior walls and none on this wall pictured.
The last guy who wired did not do it to code. There should be a minimum of one receptacle within 6 feet of any door and then every 12 feet along the wall.

No problem installing the receptacle in the garage. However you may not have a neutral at the three way switch. You will have to check that first. not all whites are neutrals. If the white is attached to the switch, it is not a neutral.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 11:09 AM
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I want to revise what I stated. You do not want to tap off of a light circuit if that circuit is 15 amps. If it's 20 amp breaker and 12 gauge wire then fine.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 03:03 PM
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The last guy who wired did not do it to code. There should be a minimum of one receptacle within 6 feet of any door
Joed, this is a new one on me. Who's code is this? I'm not aware of it being in NEC?
 
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Old 12-10-20, 03:06 PM
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in response to the requirement for 20a.

Why is that? So is tapping from a light allowed or not? Or are you saying that if I’m going to do it anyway, it needs to be 20A 12 gauge?
 
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Old 12-10-20, 03:12 PM
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There is no NEC restriction that says a receptacle outlet is not to be on the same circuit as lights. Obviously if the lighting circuit is 15A then any receptacles added on to that circuit will be limited to 15A and may as well be wired with #14 wire. If the lighting circuit is 20A then the added receptacles could be wired with #12 and would be 20A as is the lighting circuit. It is just not a preferred wiring method to have lights and receptacles on the same circuit.
The only caveat is adding a receptacle in an area that is required to be 20A by the NEC such as small appliance receptacles in a kitchen.
 
cartman, cwbuff, Norm201 voted this post useful.
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Old 12-10-20, 03:22 PM
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The way pattenp explained is correct. In fact I just read that even at 15 amp a bathroom exhaust fan is allowed to be powered from a light circuit using 14 gauge wire. The thing here is that no other appliance will be connected to draw more than the exhaust fan motor.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 03:28 PM
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I checked. It’s a 15a circuit. By my count, there are 8 lights and 5 plugs on the circuit. All are rarely used.

3 closet lights on pull chains. 1 light in each utility room, 2 basement (guest) bathroom lights- one of the lights is a exhaust fan/light combo, 1 spare bedroom light. The plugs are scattered throughout and are rarely used, if at all.

what’s the max allowed?

we’re planning for a big screen tv and a gaming system on the new receptacle.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 04:16 PM
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we’re planning for a big screen tv and a gaming system on the new receptacle.
These won't pose a problem. But if you should plug in a space heater and /or other appliances that might be a problem.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 05:25 PM
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Joed has quoted the NEC code correctly.
Obviously that work was done without inspection and someone put the receptacles only where they wanted them..... not where they should have been from the start.

 
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Old 12-10-20, 07:50 PM
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Not more than 6 feet from any door is not correctly quoted from the NEC. There are cases where an outlet isn't required to be placed making that quote not definitive.
 
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Old 12-10-20, 09:42 PM
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The code doesn't specifically say door. I think it says something like wall break or wall start. It also applies to windows, fireplaces, bookcases, etc. that go to the floor.
 
 

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