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#168681 09/12/07 10:11 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,745
Likes: 13
My wife has a project in some golf course bathrooms. The electrician she hired is having a problem with a plan that makes her happy. They are putting in a switch by the door on a concrete block wall. This is "tie beam" construction so the top 2 blocks are solid concrete. How do you get down the wall? She thinks EMT is too industrial, Wiremold is tacky.

My thought is to come down from the ceiling with pipe and LB into the core below the tiebeam so they can go with hidden wire and a flush box at eye level.

She says what else can you do.

Greg Fretwell
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,289
Your plan sounds good, but how are they going to wire the light in without some surface wiring method or another?
Also, doesn't this have to meet ADA height?

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,313
Likes: 7
How about a ceiling mounted motion detector? No pipe, drilling & nothing ugly! Also, it's ADA compliant!

Your idea sounds like a 'plan' also.

Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,349
Likes: 1
Cat Servant
Time to take a roto-hammer to the wall, dig a trench, run your pipe or MC, and patch. At least, that's how they do it in the "Old" country laugh

If the trench is deep enough, you won't even need to bury a protective plate over it either.

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 276
Furring the wall out a few inches is another option. You lose 2-3 inches of room along one wall but you get protected dead space in the wall to run wires, conceal boxes, etc.

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,745
Likes: 13
The ceiling is drywall under trusses so that is a free fire zone, the only question is the switch by the door for the light.

Reno, the inspector is not going to be happy if you notch the tiebeam. That is structural.

I also suggested the motion sensor but they want a switch too. This is not California and these folks don't mind spending money to keep the fan going all day long.
I suggested putting a bell box on the back wall (the service is there anyway on the outside) and put the motion sensor there. That could be pretty tight to the ceiling and they could come through the soffit and fish over the block wall to that. Then come out of there to a ceiling fan box. Use that as the J box to pick up the exhaust fan, hold a ceiling light and over to the switch. If they decide to go with a paddle fan with a light kit later they will be good to go.

Greg Fretwell
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 272

Last edited by A-Line; 09/13/07 11:44 AM.
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,803
A pull switch?

Wood work but can't!
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 613
I hate retrofit in cinder block or even worse in concrete The most versatile is to cut the top blocks vertically until you get past the bond and down to the hollow part and install emt and steel flexible conduit to get down the blocks to the switch. Use a masonry box and a lot of mortar to fill the cut and set the box. Stuff a bug wad of metal screen in the block that the switch occupies to hold the cement or mortar from falling down the wall. You might want to ask the building inspector or a structural engineer what parts of the bond you should avoid but I am sure it is possible to cut it vertically for the depth of 2 or 3 inches you would need to get the emt through. I have done too many of these and that is what i did with Building inspection approval. The ceiling is surface if there is not void above. If you should decide on BX or any aluminum raceway you need to be sure there are no chloride additives in the cement or you will need to protect the armour with tar heavy tape etc.

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,745
Likes: 13
Thanks, when I presented the options they are leaning toward just using the motion sensor (no wall switch) and using the override function if they want the fan on all the time.

We also found out this ceiling is stucco over wire, not drywall so poking holes is not as easy as we thought.

Greg Fretwell
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