Would Like To Connect Outdoor Light to Extension Cord

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Old 11-04-09, 03:01 PM
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Would Like To Connect Outdoor Light to Extension Cord

Hi there:

I need to install a motion detector security light to a mobile home where there is no pre-wiring to have such a fixture.

I bought a motion detector flood light at Ace and they said that I could just cut off the end of an outdoor extension cord and wire that to the light fixture, thus making the fixture able to be hung anywhere and just plug it into an outdoor receptacle for power.

I am willing to try this but I am still not clear on how this can be mounted to a surface (like the eave or even a post) since the wire will not allow the mounting surface of the light fixture to be flush to whatever it is attached to.

Anyone have any suggestions on if this is possible?

Thank you!
 
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Old 11-04-09, 03:43 PM
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bought a motion detector flood light at Ace and they said that I could just cut off the end of an outdoor extension cord and wire that to the light fixture, thus making the fixture able to be hung anywhere and just plug it into an outdoor receptacle for power.
That would be a violation of the NEC unless for temporary use only. Cutting the end off the extension cord would also violate its UL listing.

If this is a permanent installation it needs to be mounted using cable or conduit. If you give us the details we can walk you through it.
 
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Old 11-04-09, 05:16 PM
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You could screw the base to a waterproof electric box and mount that but you really should wire it up right and use either conduit or at least exterior wiring and not chop up an extension cord.It should be hooked in to a circuit not just plugged in especially to a receptacle on the outside which with something plugged into it cannot be protected from the weather.

This kind of set up would likely keep your insurance from paying you were it to cause a fire or other damage.It would violate just about any code that might possibly apply.
 
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Old 11-05-09, 08:11 AM
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Thanks for the responses. I'll try and be as detailed as I can.

This is a mobile home (which I have very little experience with these even tho' I own this one!), it is a separate residence which sits on my farm.

The main electric panel is inside the house on the opposite side of the house where we need to put the security light. There is a good size crawl space, which would likely allow me to install an separate amp & switch in the main box and run conduit or romex or whatever I need under the house to the other side of the house where I need.

However, I do not know how to feed that conduit up inside the walls or whatever I'd need to do to get the final feed out to a junction box or whatever to attach the light to without tearing the walls up...and having zero experience with mobile homes and its vinyl siding (and zero attic area), it just seemed like a simpler solution to have a light that we could just plug in and mount.

But I do understand what you are both saying re:safety, etc.

I am not as concerned with the aesthetic look, meaning if I have to see a conduit or cable wire running along the side of the house or the eaves that is no big deal...

Can I run a conduit under the house and poke it through a small hole in the siding of the house and then run that up the exterior to a junction box/light?
 
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Old 11-05-09, 10:50 AM
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Is there a receptacle on the inside where you want the outside light? Any receptacle not heavily used except one in the kitchen or bath would be ok.

Are the outside walls 1" or 3" thick?
 
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Old 11-05-09, 11:18 AM
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As far as I know,and I'm no electrician but have years of hardware experience,you could run conduit through the crawlspace and up the exterior wall to a weatherproof box.Be sure to use weather tight fittings and you should be ok.

RE: mobile homes,they are manufactured very differently than a traditional home and it may be difficult to get inside the walls.I'd avoid that.
 
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Old 11-05-09, 04:01 PM
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ray - there is no receptacle on the inside where I need the light (if you're thinking I could tap into that and come through the exterior wall)... I have zip idea how thick these walls are.

david's point is exactly my issue - I've remodeled a few homes and do get the structure and wiring possibilities in a 'normal' house, but these mobile homes seem like a completely different critter, with very flimsy walls. They seem like they are vinyl siding floating over a panel of osb, but the interior walls are like press board or lauan that are pre-wallpapered. If you barely push on these they flex - I suspect I could easily smash my fist through one if I tried (and I'm a woman with not a ton of upper arm strength) - LOL!!!

I'm hoping that David's suggestion would work without violating my insurance codes, or causing anything extreme. I'm in VA and our codes are a bit more relaxed than somewhere like CA, but I get that a hazard is hazard.

Thoughts?
 
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Old 11-05-09, 05:24 PM
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Basically David,s idea was best. Mine was only going to be a modification of his. You can use " PVC conduit.

Is the breaker box inside or outside the mobile home. Outside is easier. You can just come out the bottom of the box, down to the crawl space, across and up to a surface mounted weather tight box that the light mounts on. You could use #14 THWN and a 15a breaker.

If the breaker is inside if there are knockouts in the back of the box you can come straight out and down using an elbow or you may have to come out of yje bottom and out but that would mean cutting the wall. If there is no knockout in back you can drill a hole with a hole saw space permitting.
 
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Old 11-28-09, 10:54 PM
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I know this wont win me brownie points with some of the guys but you can do this simpler

IF you were to put an extension cord on a light that you could move around IT DOESNT concern the nec...

however cutting the end off and extension cord would not be the answer because of a the UL issue... i suggest buying a few feet of outdoor line cord 12 or 14 awg and put a male cord cap on the end put a water proof box on you lamp and USE wire nuts not a mess of tape use a waterproof line cord connector ussually these are right next to the romex connector but dont use a romex connector...must be waterproof..

they actually sell a green box with twin spotlights with a 6 foot cord all waterproof and it comes with a stake or you can screw it onto the wall unsure of the brand goodluck
 
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