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#61710 - 02/01/06 08:21 AM Old work- recessed light big problemo
Haligan Offline

Registered: 02/25/04
Posts: 112
Loc: Berkeley, CA USA
Existing old ceiling surface light to be replaced with recessed can. I take down the light and look in the box and discover it's a MAJOR junction box. There's no fill violation, but it's right at the limit with two difference circuits branching off in there. The junction boxes attached to the cans are completely undersized for this. I think this is a 'no-go'.

editorial note:
I'm ashamed to admit it, but I'm pretty much a bookworm electrician. I do a lot better work than some lifers I've seen, but because I've had very little time with a master sparky I'm sure I do a lot of things the hard way. Not having the benefit of years of experience. Now that California has mandated the licensing, my time is up. I have no where near the required apprentice hours necessary for the test.

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Arc Flash Clothing, Gloves, KneePads, Tool Belts, Pouches, Tool Carriers, etc. etc....

#61711 - 02/01/06 10:58 AM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
Radar Offline

Registered: 04/30/04
Posts: 349
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Licensing issues aside for the moment. First thing we need to know is if the space above the ceiling is accessable (attic?). Then we can work on a solution.
There are 10 types of people. Those who know binary, and those who don't.

#61712 - 02/01/06 12:05 PM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
Steve Miller Offline

Registered: 08/30/01
Posts: 322
Loc: Loudoun Cty, VA
Around here they consider the space above a recessed can as accessible (assuming you can get to it by removing the trim only). If it's an IC can you may be out of luck. We split up the jbox into 2 ... and charge accordingly

#61713 - 02/01/06 12:08 PM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
Trick440 Offline

Registered: 08/15/05
Posts: 248
Loc: Waterford, MI, USA
Just shove em all in there, it'll work. Even if you gotta leave the door off... whos gonna see it anyways....

lol... just kidding. Use a j-box if its attic accessible.
Shake n Bake

#61714 - 02/01/06 12:44 PM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
Jim M Offline

Registered: 08/10/01
Posts: 453
Loc: Chestertown, MD, USA
Besides the number of wires in the box, you will probably have an issue with the insulation rating of the existing conductors. Most recessed require 90 degree C wiring.

Although it would not be easy to find should something go wrong, perhaps a deep 1900 box to enclose the existing wires. This would be accessible thru the hole for the recessed.

#61715 - 02/01/06 01:58 PM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
Haligan Offline

Registered: 02/25/04
Posts: 112
Loc: Berkeley, CA USA
The location is a stairway landing in between floors. There is a good 11 inches of depth there. No insulation. I'll check the NEC tonight to see if a remodel can opening is accessible. If you can only get one arm through the hole is that accessible?

Installing a j-box through that opening is going to be a little proctological.

#61716 - 02/01/06 03:04 PM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
Active 1 Offline

Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 684
Loc: Grayslake IL, USA
Besides the J-box in the can hole idea you have another option. Put a finish blank on the cieling box, Cut the can near by, and wip off the box to the can. If the blank is painted the same as the cielinf it does not look that bad.


#61717 - 02/01/06 07:29 PM Re: Old work- recessed light big problemo
HLCbuild Offline

Registered: 12/05/04
Posts: 206
Loc: Herndon,Va USA
I'll probably take some heat for this, but...if you are using a remodel type fixture, then the j-box of the fixture is accessed only by removing the recessed fixture. So I don't see a problem if you put another j-box in the ceiling accessible thru the same hole. However, I did see a UL listing once on Lightolier recessed fixtures that said if the hole was not at least 6" in diameter, it would not be listed for "feed-thru" wiring; i.e. you couldn't use that hole for the large j-box if the recessed light is less than 6". The 1100 series takes a 6 5/8" hole. (And Lightolier 1000 series, 5", and 2000 series, 3 3/4", are labeled suitable for feed-thru wiring, but they're not unless there is access from above!)


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