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Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 61
jkochan Offline OP
I've seen some "creative" stuff over the years and I saw something new yesterday. An electrical contractor is working at a neighbors' house installing extra circuits for yard lighting. To get the circuits fro the new sub-panel to the yard they have to cross the drive way. Instead of the usual, under, over or around scenarios, he has removed the expansion joint material and a deco drain from between the garage slab and the driveway and is running rigid conduit in the gap. From what I've been able to gather, the plan is to then cover the rigid with sand and top with an elastomeric joint filler to refill the joint. Now besides the fact that the deco drain was probably put there for a good reason, is there also an issue with possible crushing of the conduit from the expansion during the hot AZ summers or can rigid take that kind of pressure? I don't think there is much of a pressure issue from the car tires as the gap is only wide enough to allow the conduit with a little extra room, and vehicle tires would span the gap. Doesn't code say so many inches under driveways and walkways?

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,313
Likes: 7
Unless said driveway modification as above are 'under the building', based on 300.5 table......he needs min of 4" for RGC


Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,745
Likes: 13
If the slot under the Decodrain goes all the way to the dirt I would just scrape it deeper,(maybe blow it out with a pressure cleaner) bury the rigid 6" and fill it back in. Then replace Decodrain.

Greg Fretwell
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 61
jkochan Offline OP
Thanks for the replies. I hate to get involved in SEP, but this guy is probably the best neighbor you could ever want living next to you, and I'd like to save him some grief. Maybe if I just leave my old copy of the 95 code laying out where the contractor can see it, he'll take the hint. If not, I'll stick my nose in and let the chips fall where they may. I'm sure the neighbor will apppreciate the info. and I'm pretty sure the EC won't. If I don't post before... Merry ChrismaHaunaQuanza to all.

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,429
LK Offline
If he has a permit, then it had to pass inspection, or the EC will have to re do it.

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
jkochan are you an inspector or where you asked your opinion on this installation?

If not, it strikes me as a 'mind your own business' type issue.

Your good deed may end up costing your great neighbor more money. Just another perspective to think about.


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 61
jkochan Offline OP
Yeah... the more I learn about it, the better it seem to just stay clear of it. The sub-panel was by permit (green tag is still in the box), but these new branch circuits apparently aren't. Got a bad feel to it all they way around. According to my neighbor, “Since it’s Christmas” the EC (or employee there of) gave him a “deal” for cash. Could be skimming jobs from his company or who knows what. Just too messy a situation get involved in. He did ask my opinion on how I thought it was going….it’s taking a few days to do, which is another reason I think it’s an employee working off the clock….I just said that if it was my house I’d like to see the conduit down a little deeper and left it at that.

Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 681
300.5 Column 2 - second row up from the bottom, the RMC is still required to be buried 18 inches deep under residential driveways.

Keep out of your neighbor's business, but drop a dime to the local inspector about the installation [Linked Image]

Pierre Belarge

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