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Old 11-08-2008, 04:52 AM   #1
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Adding something to a circuit...


I recently bought my first house and I hired a handy man to install some ceiling fans. I have limited electrical experience, but I have been educating myself and have been reading up on the subject and I knew enough to know that splices had to be contained in a junction box. I made it a point to let the man know this is what I expected. Several weeks later I was up in my attic and what do you think I found? Open splices! Needless to say I am PO'ed, and I have been installing junction boxes as I have the time.

My question is this: It appears in some cases what he did was simply find a cable to tap into, cut it, and spliced the new cable for the ceiling fan into it. Is this an appropriate wiring method, or to circuits have to flow through one light to the next? For example, if I have a junction box, and I want to install a new light somewhere, can I simply run a new cable from the junction box to the new light providing that I don't exceed the maximum allowable wires for the junction box or the twist connectors? Hope this makes sense and thanks in advance.

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Old 11-08-2008, 09:50 AM   #2
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I personally would of called the Electrician on it & checked things out before signing the bill. As for if this was done by the person performing the work, file a complaint with the local Permits dept.

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Old 11-08-2008, 10:04 AM   #3
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Depending on what circuit he tapped into it is totally acceptable. The tapping not the no box part. Kitchen counter receptacles and bathroom circuit for example are dedicated to those loads and can not be tapped for a ceiling fan.
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Old 11-08-2008, 11:01 AM   #4
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Adding something to a circuit...


Make him fix this issue that HE caused. You even told him before he started. If he is honest he will return and install the boxes like he should have done to start with. I would be pissed off too!
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Old 11-08-2008, 12:14 PM   #5
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It may well have been illegal for the handyman to do this job. In most parts of the US electricians must be licensed, must pull a permit for the work, and must have the job inspected by the local building inspector.
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Old 11-08-2008, 12:59 PM   #6
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Adding something to a circuit...


Sometimes electrical connections can come loose, especially if not done properly, then sparks can fly! This can cause a fire!

So it is best to place all electrical connections in an enclosed approved electrical box with cover so any sparking would be contained within the box.

If I were you, I would not let that guy step one foot back into your house!

As to how many wires you can place in an electrical box, search google.com for the words...

electrical box fill
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Old 11-09-2008, 04:42 AM   #7
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Adding something to a circuit...


A lot of people are telling me that I should call the guy back, but the truth is I have the same thought process as Billy Bob, I don't want that guy back in my house.

In regards to how many wires you can put in a box, I have a reference chart for that. To try to be more specific, what I was asking was this: Can I splice in the middle of a run to add lights providing that I am using a junction box that is big enough to house the wires and providing that I am not overloading the circuit? Can I have multiple "end of the run" lights from this junction box, or should they be wired as middle of the run? Thanks!
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Old 11-09-2008, 04:47 AM   #8
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Oh, and in my area a homeowner or direct relitive can do electrical work, or it has to be a qualified electritian. Now I know.
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Old 11-09-2008, 04:48 AM   #9
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Did Mr Handyman use fan rated boxes to support the fans? Probably not.Wear a hard hat.
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Old 11-09-2008, 04:55 AM   #10
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Hold on to your hat, the boxes are fine, rated for 35 lbs.
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Old 11-09-2008, 05:53 AM   #11
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Yes you can add more lights at the j box per your specs. box size and ampacity.
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Old 11-09-2008, 07:39 PM   #12
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Call the handyman and tell him your house caught fire and the insurance company will be contacting him.

Handymen should be barred from electrical work.

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