Rewiring an old house


  #1  
Old 01-09-02, 11:31 AM
Guest
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Rewiring an old house

My house, which was built in 1950, seems to have to many outlets on 1 line (breakers trip when to many things are running). My question is...

As I begin to rewire the rooms, is it ok to put lights and outlets on the same circuit? I would like to put 1 breaker per room, except kitchen. Is this the wrong approach? If so, how many outlets can I get on a 15 or 20 amp breaker?

Thanks,
Jeff
 
  #2  
Old 01-09-02, 01:27 PM
J
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Other than bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms and dining rooms, you can do almost anything you want. However, I'd advise against putting lights on the same circuit as receptacles. It's perfectly safe, but your wife will always think you're incompetent every time she sees the light dim when she turns on the vacuum cleaner. And you won't be able to fix that! For this reason alone, I wouldn't do it!

The rooms mentioned above are highly regulated and you cannot just do what you want. You need to learn the codes that apply. There are good books at your library and home improvement center that can describe them. Post back with specific questions.

Code allows you to put as many outlets and lights on a circuit as you want, as long as you meet the 3 watts per square foot rule. However, a good rule of thumb is not to put more than 8 on a 15-amp circuit or 10 on a 20-amp circuit. These numbers assume you have no lighting on that circuit.

In summary, your idea of one circuit per room is okay, but I do not advise it.
 
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Old 01-10-02, 12:14 AM
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Angry

I am in the same situation as "j" is. My house was built in the late 60's and has aluminum wiring. It seems that half of the house is running on one cercuit (kitchen, dining room, living room, master bedroom).
I just had the service upgraded from 100 amps to 200 and the fuse box from a 20 breaker to a 40 breaker. I figured that this would be a good place to start. The previous owners really didn't pay attention when they added fixtures and made copper/aluminum connections on the same curcuit.
Now here is were I'm stuck.
- How can I tell the path of the a cercuit or is there a way?
- Is there a way to re-wire one room at a time without perminently disrupting service to the other portions of the house?

Any advise is greatly appreciated...

The Novice....
 
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Old 01-10-02, 03:49 AM
T
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Unless it's a very small room, I always recommend you keep the lights on one circuit, and the outlets on another circuit, even if you have to put two rooms on one breaker. The reason is because you always have a source of power in that room, wheter you have to work on the lights, or the outlets.
 
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Old 01-10-02, 03:07 PM
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So I should put receptacles on 1 circuit and lights on another. That's fine, I can run the receptacles for 2 rooms on one breaker. What is the 3 amps per foot you talk about?
 
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Old 01-10-02, 03:48 PM
J
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"J", now you're really scaring me. If you are not aware of the 3 watts per square foot rule, that says to me that you have not done sufficient research into the electrical codes for the project you are undertaking. The 3 watts rule is one of the most basic rules of wiring a home. Please get some books on home wiring and read them cover to cover. I recommend "Wiring Simplified" by Richter and Schwan.

Specifically, the 3-watt rule (more precisely a 3 volt-amp rule) is covered in section 220 of the NEC. It states that you must have 3 volt-amperes per square foot for general lighting and general-use receptacles. The floor area for each floor shall be computed from the outside dimensions of the dwelling unit. The computed floor area shall not include open porches, garages, or unused or unfinished spaces not adaptable for future use.
 
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Old 01-13-02, 06:57 AM
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Not being an electrician, that is why I ask questions before attempting to do anything. I did work as an electrical helper some years back and did run wiring. I just installed stuff where I was told and never to any formal education. Thanks for your help and I will look into those books.

Jeff
 
  #8  
Old 01-13-02, 07:27 AM
Wgoodrich
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John is right you really need to do some more research on the NEC requirements. You might want to try the following link explaining the term existing when dealing with a remodle project of a dwelling.

http://homewiring.tripod.com/termexist.html

Then you might want to start your research on wiring requirments concerning the new wiring you install in you remodle project.

http://homewiring.tripod.com/newdwelshow.html

If you want a smorgesboard of info concerning wiring a dwelling click on my electronic signature below.

Once you have read all you feel you need to read come back in for specific questions you may not understand.


Hope this helps

Wg
 
 

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