The Electrical Contractor Network

ECN Electrical Forum
Discussion Forums for Electricians, Inspectors and Related Professionals

Books, Tools and Test Equipment for Electrical and Construction Trades

Register Now!

Register Now!

We want your input!

Featured:
   

2017 NEC and Related
2017 NEC
Now Available!

   
Recent Posts
Industrail Control Panel bonding per 409.108
by sparkyinak
Yesterday at 06:29 PM
Calling all Non-US members!! (Non-US only)
by aussie240
12/07/16 02:39 AM
Photo Upload Tutorial
by DanK
12/06/16 11:35 PM
Sprinklered equipment 26-008
by bigpapa
12/02/16 04:24 PM
On Delay Relay with Auto Reset
by Potseal
12/01/16 09:59 AM
New in the Gallery:
12.5A through 0.75mm˛ flex (just out of curiosity)
Shout Box

Top Posters (30 Days)
gfretwell 13
HotLine1 10
sparkyinak 9
Texas_Ranger 8
Potseal 6
Who's Online
0 registered (), 186 Guests and 4 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#59338 - 12/02/05 03:23 PM Holiday lilghting questions
Grover Offline
Member

Registered: 01/19/05
Posts: 110
Loc: Sebago, ME, USA
I'm down to the wire, and just got some bad news....

We have 2 trees - 50' tall. Each tree has 5 strings of lights. Power comes to 2 GFI's cut into a plywood panel where a basement window used to be - each GFI fed by it's own 20A breaker - thru a mechanical timer.

Old way: 100' NM - conduit sleeve under a snowplowed emergency access driveway to the first tree; 150' NM same path to the second tree. NM terminated with plug on one end - duplex receptacle on the other - suspended above ground and wrapped in plastic. 5 cords to the duplex - multitaps - to feed the individual circuits. Yes - using NM as an extension cord, not anchored or supported.

Town Manager, not Code Enforcement Officer has stated no tree lighting ceremony this year because of electrical hazards.

Is there any code compliant way to do temporary holiday lighting?

Top
Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
Arc Flash Clothing, Gloves, KneePads, Tool Belts, Pouches, Tool Carriers, etc. etc....

#59339 - 12/02/05 03:35 PM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
JoeTestingEngr Offline
Member

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 786
Loc: Chicago, Il.
Low voltage lighting solutions???
Joe

Top
#59340 - 12/02/05 05:12 PM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
e57 Offline
Member

Registered: 05/27/03
Posts: 2837
Loc: S.F.,CA USA
 Quote:
Old way: 100' NM - conduit sleeve under a snowplowed emergency access driveway to the first tree; 150' NM same path to the second tree. NM terminated with plug on one end - duplex receptacle on the other - suspended above ground and wrapped in plastic. 5 cords to the duplex - multitaps - to feed the individual circuits. Yes - using NM as an extension cord, not anchored or supported.
Electrical hazards - No wonder. Maybe perminantly install up-lights at each tree, and install appropriate colored lenses for the holidays, thats what I plan to do with my front yard soon... For tree lighting, hang a bunch of white tags in the tree, the colored lenses will make them shine in color. Or laser show from a any distance.... Or, properly install outlets at each tree, with in use covers and have enough of them to not use tap plugs...
_________________________
Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason

Top
#59341 - 12/02/05 05:42 PM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
ShockMe77 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/11/05
Posts: 823
Loc: Rahway, New Jersey
Being that you need these lights NOW not a month from now: shovels, rigid nonmetallic conduit, fittings, glue, FS boxes, GFCI's some thwn, tape, and a few in-use bubble covers should get the job done in code compliant fashion. I suppose you could also use some UF to get it done faster but be sure to checkout NEC article 340 before you do anything. Good luck.

Top
#59342 - 12/02/05 05:43 PM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
DougW Offline
Member

Registered: 06/08/03
Posts: 1083
Loc: North Chicago, IL
If you can, I'd arrange for a section of RMC/RNC to be laid under the driveway as a chase. Then just use a 10/3 extension cord in lieu of the romex - maybe one of the "contractor cords" with a triple receptacle(factory) or j-box on the end.

Top
#59343 - 12/02/05 05:51 PM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
Member

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
A customer had me re-do their set-up. This was for a tree that approached 80 ft. in height.
I ran EMT along the building, under the eave. At the appropriate place, I dropped down to a very small load center. Attached to the load center is a "can" with a contactor, timer, and photocell. From the load center, I ran PVC pipe 2 ft. underground to the tree.
In the shrubbery around the tree, and near the trunk, I came up with some tape-wrapped rigid to some "Bell" boxes. These had GFI receptacles in them.

A lighting company did the tree itself; all they had to do was plug in.

Top
#59344 - 12/03/05 04:59 AM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
Grover Offline
Member

Registered: 01/19/05
Posts: 110
Loc: Sebago, ME, USA
Thanks for all the input guys!

Is the use of NM as an "extension cord" prohibited by NEC or OSHA? what about using UF as an "extension cord"? Code reference?

The town tree lighting is tomorrow at 4:45 PM!

My town is still using the 1999 code....

Top
#59345 - 12/03/05 07:54 AM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
iwire Offline
Moderator

Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4343
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
Considering your time frame I suggest the use of 10 AWG extra hard usage rubber cord.
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

Top
#59346 - 12/03/05 08:30 AM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
Member

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
Grover, the code simply says you need to use approved materiels. So- where you need flexable cord, you need to use "flexible cord,: examples of which are SO, SJO. SJTO, SEEOW, etc.
So the use of NM or UF would generally be considered a violation. The one "exception" being if the install is permanent, and the cord is buried. "S" type cords will not stand up to direct burial, and will rot through rather quickly.
OSHA does like to cite when NM is used as an extension cord. I say this, as this is one of the things that they specifically illustrate on their web site as a violation.

There seems to be a preferance at your site to using NM. I suggest that you look at this more closely...I doubt that any money was saved over 'doing it right.' To those in the trade, this sort of thing screams "amateur at work here."

Top
#59347 - 12/03/05 04:57 PM Re: Holiday lilghting questions
n1ist Offline
Member

Registered: 02/13/02
Posts: 176
Loc: Malden MA
NM outdoors? Also, most plugs aren't rated for solid wire.

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >



ECN Electrical Forums - sponsored by Electrical Contractor Network - Electrical and Code Related Discussion for Electrical Contractors, Electricians, Inspectors, Instructors, Engineers and other related Professionals