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#100623 - 12/06/06 07:42 PM Common wall on condo
bwise121 Offline

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 113
Loc: Sacramento, CA USA
I'm working on a condo for the owner and we noticed that the common wall has no outlets/switches on it. This wall is about 15 feet long in the master bedroom.

Is there a code that prohibits an outlet on this wall? Condo is approximately 20 years old and in Sacramento, CA.

Many thanks,

2014 / 2011 NEC & Related Books and Study Guides
#100624 - 12/06/06 10:43 PM Re: Common wall on condo
gfretwell Offline


Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9026
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
It sounds more like a violation of 210.52 not to have them.
Greg Fretwell

#100625 - 12/07/06 02:40 AM Re: Common wall on condo
walrus Offline

Registered: 07/25/02
Posts: 671
Loc: Bangor Me. USA
Maybe they thought it would reduce noise between the units by not placing outlets there??

#100626 - 12/07/06 05:57 AM Re: Common wall on condo
ShockMe77 Offline

Registered: 06/11/05
Posts: 823
Loc: Rahway, New Jersey
Sheetrocker perhaps buried them?

#100627 - 12/07/06 06:31 AM Re: Common wall on condo
Mike Wescoatt Offline

Registered: 06/17/01
Posts: 164
Loc: Cedar City, Utah
Could be related to fire rating of the common wall (usually 1HR) or have to do with the legal seperation of the units since one person would own 1 layer of sheetrock and 1/2 of the 2x4...

I can see it now... my lawyer needs to talk to your lawyer about your romex that you have running through my half of the 2x4...
Mike Wescoatt

#100628 - 12/07/06 06:37 AM Re: Common wall on condo
ghost307 Offline

Registered: 05/09/05
Posts: 883
Loc: Chicago Illinois USA
It's probably a fire-rated wall and they didn't want to go to the extra expense of adding receptacles and then restoring the fire rating.
Fortunately; there is no place in the Code that says that the requirements are waived if someone is too cheap to meet them.

#100629 - 12/07/06 06:53 AM Re: Common wall on condo
ShockMe77 Offline

Registered: 06/11/05
Posts: 823
Loc: Rahway, New Jersey
There are several exceptions in article 210.52, but nothing that forbids receptacles on a fire-rated wall.

#100630 - 12/07/06 07:26 AM Re: Common wall on condo
Roger Offline

Registered: 05/18/02
Posts: 1779
Loc: N.C.
Excerpt from the UL Fire Resistance Directory,
boxes shall not be installed on opposite side of walls or partitions of staggered stud construction unless "Wall Opening Protective Materials" are installed according to the requirements of their Classification.

And I also agree that this does not eliminate the requiremnts of 210.52.


#100631 - 12/07/06 07:52 AM Re: Common wall on condo
Steve T Offline

Registered: 02/14/01
Posts: 312
Loc: Oak Park, IL, USA
Typically UL fire barrier separation walls has verbage that says boxes on opposite sides of the wall need some kind of fire separation. The distance used in many assemblies is 24 inches apart to say that the boxes are not back to back.

There is no good reason why the receptacles are not installed.

If sound was the issue, they make putty pads. Putty pads are also used to achieve the fire rating separation.

#100632 - 12/07/06 04:35 PM Re: Common wall on condo
HotLine1 Offline


Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6792
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
The 'common wall' (fire wall) between units has to comply with 210.52 PERIOD

No exceptions/variations for the 'firewall'

Rated boxes; if 24" or less on opposing wall faces, firestopping (putty pads) required.

Ceilings are another issue.


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