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Joined: Nov 2002
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wa2ise Offline OP
Saw at the orange box some light fixtures (marketed by Westinghouse, made in Taiwan) that enclose the light bulb inside a glass globe, and also have a pull chain power switch. As I have heard, the bare light bulb pull chain fixtures are no longer acceptable for use in closets (seems that fires have happened when a box or something on a shelf falls off a little and ends up resting against the 100 watt bulb that was left on). But the globe should prevent that, also prevent broken light bulb fragments from getting all over the clothes. I've seen new closets with such fixtures controlled by light switches mounted in the wall just outside the closet. But is it acceptable to use the enclosed fixtures that come with a pull chain to replace the bare bulb pull chain fixtures?


[This message has been edited by Webmaster (edited 06-28-2004).]

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Joined: Jan 2001
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Tom Offline
Yes, pull chain fixtures are acceptable if the lamp is enclosed, but this is just one of the requirements for fixtures in a closet.

The real problem with lights in closets is that many closets are not big enough to provide the proper clearances.

Someone with better typing skills can give you all the clearance measurements, or try looking at 410.8 in the 2002 NEC.


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Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 597

Part of the answer to your question will also come from local ordinance. I infer from your question that the closet luminaire with the bare bulb is installed in an existing dwelling. The NEC only covers new wiring, and doesn't directly apply.

In my part of the country, I'll see the bare bulb fixture installed in closets of homes built in the Sixties and before. Local ordinance requires that any such closet light be at minimum replaced with a fish bowl enclosed surface mounted luminaire (in most cases, the luminaire you saw at the orange box is perfect). However, the requirement to replace the bare bulb unit is only required when the service center is replaced or increased in ampacity.

Bottom line. . .I'm certain I'll be installing that pullchain fish bowl, a few at a time, until I die.

Al Hildenbrand
Joined: Oct 2000
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However, the requirement to replace the bare bulb unit is only required when the service center is replaced or increased in ampacity.

You have to replace Bare-Bulb Closet Fixtures when you do a Service Change or Panelboard replacement?

If so, what else do you have to do?


Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 24
I agree with the the previous replies regarding the legality of the fixture you're thinking of using.
Have you considered installing an under cabinet style fluorescent light directly above the door on the wall/header.
It really adds a margin of safety and usually gets you much better lighting,especially in tight quarters.

Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
Have also seen folks told by AHJ to use the "compact flourescent" replacement lamp assemblies to comply with the "no bare incandescent lamps" portion of the Code.

Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 597

Minneapolis and St. Paul have two seperate descriptions. They are very similar. The Minneapolis version is reprinted here . Basically, the highlights are
  • Two duplex receptacles per room,
  • grounded convienence receptacle in the bath,
  • grounding of conductive electrical surfaces in the bath and elsewhere where within 5' horizontally and 8' vertically of another grounded surface,
  • 20 amp circuit to the kitchen to at least one outlet,
  • 20 amp laundry circuit if there is a laundry,
  • hazardous wiring removed or repaired.

Al Hildenbrand
Joined: Oct 2000
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[Linked Image] Much different from here.
Where I am a Service Change or Upgrade doesn't dictate changing anything else at all.



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