They must have been allowed at some point as there seem to be millions of these around. I see the potential danger here but I can't recall hearing of any house fires caused by these. Any stats on this?
Re: Lampholders Are Not Allowed in Clothes ....#103958 12/15/0208:02 AM12/15/0208:02 AM
OK, here is my recollection of the history of this prohibition. There are two fundamental problems with lampholders such as this installed in closets. The first is that they are rated typically for up to 600 W or so with NO warnings as to use a certain wattage bulb. Now it is unlikely that the "average person" will put much more than a 100-200 W in there it has been established that 100 W and higher MAY develop bulb surface temperatures that can ignite light combustibles. Here you have essentially an unprotected bulb. Secondly, it is not usually predictable how the "average person" will configure (reconfigure) a closet for storage, or literally cram the space full. 100 W and some smaller wattages can easily develop bulb surface temperatures that can ignite light combustibles WHEN INSULATED, as by a comforter or other storage that falls forward from a shelf or is pushed by other storage against the bulb. (Joe, your photo is a good example of how the proximity of storage could allow this to happen!) There were enough documented cases of fires originating from these installations to convince the NFPA committee to restrict lampholder use. The change occurred some time ago and there may be additional justification in some of the older NEC Handbooks.
Re: Lampholders Are Not Allowed in Clothes ....#103962 01/17/0301:33 PM01/17/0301:33 PM
I believe that it was the '96 code that first addressed this issue. An easy improvement would be to replace the bulb with one of the new screw-in fluorescents. (Existing need not be updated to new code). I often, in remodeling, install a recessed can. (Code requires less clearance for a recessed fixture). Or, I mount the light on the wall, above the closet door.
Re: Lampholders Are Not Allowed in Clothes ....#103963 01/17/0301:41 PM01/17/0301:41 PM
This situation is why I started the thread about closet fixtures. I have changed half of them in my house now to hard wired enclosed flourescent, and the others will be done shortly, In the meantime, I am paranoid about clearances and how long the light stays on. Only for a few minutes at a time, and only when someone is in front of the closet. I would like to ask a question, I tried the last time, but I think the moderator thought I was flaming you, and edited my post. ( I don't mind by the way). My question is, What makes a fixture, a fixture, as opposed to being only a lampholder? If these lampholders were never allowed, why are there so many of them around?
Thanks for the info.
Re: Lampholders Are Not Allowed in Clothes ....#103965 01/17/0303:37 PM01/17/0303:37 PM