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Color code #90369 11/19/04 11:46 AM
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 1
Michael_473 Offline OP
Junior Member
We are having a discussion on a wall switch installation and
its shutting off ceiling recepticals for three HID lamp fixtures. The fixtures are 120
volts and plug into a designated receptical for each lamp. the wall switch turns off all
lights. I used a yellow wire for the load to
identify it as a fixture "switch leg". I was
told that a black wire was more to Code? Any

2017 / 2014 NEC & Related Books and Study Guides
Re: Color code #90370 11/19/04 11:54 AM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 186
NJ Wireman Offline
I cant site a code # but i have done the same many of times i used what i had on my van , red,blue,orange,purple and never had a problem.

Re: Color code #90371 11/19/04 12:05 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 81
velect Offline
You can use any color as long as it is not green, grey. or white

Re: Color code #90372 11/19/04 12:27 PM
Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,374
Ryan_J Offline
See if 210.4(D) applies.

Ryan Jackson,
Salt Lake City
Re: Color code #90373 11/19/04 07:17 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 697
Dave55 Offline
Unless you're in San Francisco.


Re: Color code #90374 11/19/04 07:41 PM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 790
wa2ise Offline
Maybe yellow might be mistaken for white, especially after a few years and layers of dirt later. I've seen white insulation look yellow after a few years. Not from overload, but just the plastic insulation getting old and yellowing.

Re: Color code #90375 11/19/04 08:19 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 265
dmattox Offline
"I was told that a black wire was more to Code?"

What does more to code mean anyways, aren't your compliant or not? Guess he is saying it depends on the inspector :P

Why would the NEC allow other colors if you were not to use them? This is a perfect case for using a different color conductor, allowing easy idetification of what's going on with a curcuit.

I personally use black, red, blue for my branch circuits (120/208) and other colors for switch legs, but this is not required or recommended in the code anywhere that I have seen. Unless you have multiple voltages in a building, as Ryan_J pointed out.

Re: Color code #90376 11/20/04 06:44 PM
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
e57 Offline
May be a local code????????

Like this one: The SF Code. You can use a different color in the same voltage color code for switch legs.
210-5(c). Add the following new section:
(c)Ungrounded Conductors. Underground conductor insulation shall be color coded as follows:
(1)One-hundred-twenty/two-hundred-forty-volt 3-wire circuits - “A” phase black, “B” phase red; 120/208 volt 4-wire 3-phase wye circuits - “A” phase black, “B” phase red, “C” phase blue; 120/240 volt 3-phase delta circuits - “A” phase black, “B” (high leg) phase purple, “C” phase red; 277/480 volt 4-wire 3-phase wye circuits - “A” phase brown, “B” phase orange, “C” phase yellow.
(2)Conductors for switch legs may be of a different color than the phase conductor other than green, white or gray when suitably identified at pull, junction and outlet boxes with marking tape, tagging or other equally effective means.

(3)Conductor insulation shall contain the applicable color pigment for circuit wire #14 AWG through #10 AWG. Ungrounded conductors #8 AWG and larger and ungrounded conductors of any size in cable assemblies may be pigmented colors other than green, white or gray, provided they are suitably identified at pull, junction and outlet boxes with marking tape, tagging or other equally effective means.

Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
Re: Color code #90377 11/20/04 09:24 PM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,286
electure Offline
Where does SF think that their amendments are in Compliance with the State's Codes?
Cut and pasted direct from BSC, CA's Building Standards site

/Rules for Cities/Counties
When making a local amendment, the law requires that a city or county do all of the following [Health and Safety Code Section 17958.7(a)]:

Expressly mark and identify each change to existing building standards.
Make an express finding that each change is reasonably necessary because of local climatic, geological, or topographical conditions.
File with the BSC a copy of each change and its related findings.

Am I missing something?
Has SF really decided that they are their own State?
(Are they gonna make Feng Shui a Code requirement, like your representative Mr. Li wants, too?) [Linked Image]

[This message has been edited by electure (edited 11-20-2004).]

Re: Color code #90378 11/21/04 12:09 AM
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
e57 Offline
Actually, this particular ammendment annoys me, for the reason that "Out of Town" electricians could be confused by the Purple High-leg color. So I personally, think it is dangerous to contradict the rest of the country on high-leg marking.

One benifit is that I don't have to worry about a can of PVC glue opening in my truck. As I rarely use it.

Truthfully, I don't know where they get off making thier own code up, I am however glad they enforce them, and our Inspectors are for the most part extremely well versed. Nor do I know how they justify it to the State, but they have been sue several times about some of these codes, and won. Some they lost.... They are all easily available though...

As for Mr. Lee.... Feel glad! Because of some of the other wacko's that could have been elected in his place were really off the wall. Imagine manditory composting, and organic sewage treatment plants, and then Lee's Feng Shui ideas dont seem all that bad....

To me, Title-24 seems a bit Feng Shui inspired....

Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason


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