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Old 05-28-2012, 12:14 AM   #1
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Adding overhead light from outlet

I have a dark spot in my master bedroom so I added an overhead ceiling light. On the one wall I have an outlet which had two sets of wires in each of the rear push pins (live going in, line to the next outlet going out). I ran a new wire down the wall and attached it to a new switch then from the switch to one set of available screws on the outlet for power.

Everything works as expected. The box didn't feel over crowded when putting the outlet back in either.

I was just curious if anything I did was unsafe in any way.

I used the same gauge wire as the outlet (14/2 w/ ground). It's a 15a circuit. The 3 sets of wires attached to the outlet is what made me question it.

Since the area is a pass-through to our master bathroom, I installed a motion switch so the light only stays on for 15 seconds once activated.


Last edited by adgjqetuo; 05-28-2012 at 12:19 AM.
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Old 05-28-2012, 01:30 AM   #2
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I think as a general practice, it's not accepted practice to power lights and outlets on the same ckt.

And....most guys here will suggest that you not back stab the outlet...or what you call the push pins on the rear. Most guys prefer to use the screws.

If it was me....I would wire nut all 3 sets of wires along with a pigtail....the pigtail would then go to the outlet. That way you can stuff the bundle of wires in the back of the box and it's a whole lot easier to move the outlet without all those wires going to it. Additionally, you end up with a better connection to your other outlets.


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Old 05-28-2012, 06:06 AM   #3
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I've read that about the back stabs before...however it seems that's how the builder wired the whole house. Every room has one in and one out to the next outlet. I would need to re-wire every outlet.

I suppose I could change this one since I'm already there, but I'm not sure it would benefit the other plugs unless I went through and chAnged them all. I have 8 in my bedroom alone.
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Old 05-28-2012, 06:35 AM   #4
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Could just redo them as they fall apart. My parents house for a while when an area lost power it turned into guess what backstab failed this time.

Some were backstabed and some were not. Only the backstabed ones failed.
With Electricity there is the right way to do it and the dead way. Just because it works does not make it safe.
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Old 05-28-2012, 07:22 AM   #5
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I disagree that it is not accepted practice to have lights and receptacles on the same circuit. It is quite common and not a problem.

As long as the box is 18 cu. in. or larger it is not overfilled.

I do agree that pig tailing the wires is better than using the back stabs.
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Old 05-28-2012, 08:01 AM   #6
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I think as a general practice, it's not accepted practice to power lights and outlets on the same ckt.
This is completely false. In a residential situation, it is rare that outlets are separate from lighting. It comes down to personal preference, there are no codes that dictate it.


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