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#89331 - 09/09/04 07:48 PM 14/2 on switch loops
mustangelectric Offline
Member

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 496
Loc: Bentonville, AR
hi,
do you live where 14/2 is allowed on switch legs on 20A circuits?

the practice is very common here in Arkansas and seems to pass inspection..

myself i never even buy #14 wire..i do not think you are saving anything by wiring this way...

thanks for any replies..

mustang

[This message has been edited by mustangelectric (edited 09-09-2004).]
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Electricity has no respect for ignorance!

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#89332 - 09/09/04 08:13 PM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
CTwireman Offline
Member

Registered: 02/07/02
Posts: 839
Loc: Connecticut, USA
This practice is wrong no matter what part of the country you live in.


I disagree with you about #14. I have yet to hear a convincing argument against it.


You are saving things by using #14 whenever possible: money, natural resources and labor.

Peter
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#89333 - 09/09/04 08:13 PM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
Ryan_J Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 1355
Loc: West Jordan, Utah, USA
Do you guys have a legally adopted amendment to 240.4(D)? If not, I think there are some electricians in your neck of the woods who should invest in liability insure.
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Salt Lake City

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#89334 - 09/09/04 10:22 PM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
NORCAL Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/02
Posts: 807
There are a number of areas in Arkansas that have no inspections,I am going to one such area next week to rough in a house for a friend.

P.S. I am bringing a camera.

Edited to add P.S.

[This message has been edited by NORCAL (edited 09-10-2004).]

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#89335 - 09/10/04 03:20 AM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
Joe Tedesco Offline
Member

Registered: 10/07/00
Posts: 3325
Loc: Boston, Massachusetts USA
Not permitted as described, and there was a Formal or Official Interpretation many years ago from NFPA indicating such.

The conductors are part of the branch circuit.
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Joe Tedesco, NEC Consultant

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#89336 - 09/10/04 04:59 AM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
mustangelectric Offline
Member

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 496
Loc: Bentonville, AR
ctwireman,
the problem with 14/2 is that it will inevitably get overloaded by either adding to a circuit or using a 20a breaker on the circuit by a homeowner or other electricians who have a problem with tripping. another problem is that 14/2 doesnt allow for ANY expansion..i can use 12/2 on a 15A breaker...then when the day comes that a new outlet or something else comes along uou can upsize the breaker with no problem..

the cost difference between 12/2 and 14/2 wont save anything that would amount to anything..as far as natural resources and other stuff...i willleave that alone..if you are counting the pennies that you may save that is up to you..

regards

mustang
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#89337 - 09/10/04 05:09 AM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
Roger Offline
Member

Registered: 05/18/02
Posts: 1779
Loc: N.C.
Mustang, what would keep a homeowner or other electrician (used loosely here) from installing a 30, 40 , or 50 amp breaker on a #12 to remedy a tripping 20 amp circuit.

I can't agree that a 15 amp circuit will "will inevitably get overloaded".

If you are adding to any circuit, it must be evaluated before arbitrarily adding outlets or loads to it, and if it is borderline, then a "new" circuit would be needed.

Roger

[This message has been edited by Roger (edited 09-10-2004).]

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#89338 - 09/10/04 05:27 AM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
mustangelectric Offline
Member

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 496
Loc: Bentonville, AR
Hi,
I just wanted to add that I am not picking on Arkansas. Some of the best electricians in the country are from here. I am from here myself. Arkansas went from no licenses in the 70's to City licenses then the state took over in the 80's which improved the quality of the work... I recently moved to a new part of Arkansas and after visitng a few jobs that were underway i noticed some code violations...i was told all of the 100,000 homes in this area are done the same way and are full of old code violations like 14/2 on 20A circuits..no slack at the box on rough-in..incorrect 3 way and 4 way switching..no in use covers etc..they are still building them that way..you can't stir the pot or you could lose your license by stirring up trouble.....i know that the state electrical board is pretty tough on violators in general but i cant explain why they would look the other way on some of these issues..

if you complain you could face retribution..

i just try to exceed what is in the code..i am not perfect myself

just some thoughts on the subject

[This message has been edited by mustangelectric (edited 09-10-2004).]

[This message has been edited by mustangelectric (edited 09-10-2004).]
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#89339 - 09/10/04 05:37 AM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
mustangelectric Offline
Member

Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 496
Loc: Bentonville, AR
roger,
thanks for the reply...i have been an electrician for over 25 years..i can't remember how many 20A breakers I have seen on #14 wire..IT IS GOING TO HAPPEN..we all know the procedure for adding to an exisitng circuit..the problem is the folks who do not..

in the code there is a rule that you must plan for future expansion...when you install 14/2 on a general purpose branch circuit...you are not doing anybody any favors..yes I can use a 15A breaker and run 14/2 from the panel to some devices and meet the code..but..there is more advantages and benfits from using #12 over #14...

there is Nothing that would stop anybody from building a bomb and setting it off in their garage either...if someone exceeds the ampacity of a conductor by installing OCPD'S that are not rated for use with the conductors then this person is not qualified to be doing electrical work...i cant remember how many AC units I have seen in the world that have #10 running off a 40 or 50A breaker...if you have been in the trade long you surely have seen the same problem..

we cant stop unqualified persons from doing electrical work..

regards

mustang

[This message has been edited by mustangelectric (edited 09-10-2004).]
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#89340 - 09/10/04 06:33 AM Re: 14/2 on switch loops
electricman2 Offline
Member

Registered: 11/09/03
Posts: 234
Loc: Thomasville, NC USA
 Quote:
i cant remember how many AC units I have seen in the world that have #10 running off a 40 or 50A breaker..

Depending on the A/C unit nameplate data, this may be compliant.
90.8(A) does not contain the mandatory term SHALL but it is always good practice to plan wiring systems for the future.
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John

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