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Old 01-21-2010, 08:53 AM   #1
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Branching off Switched Outlet


Hi Everyone,

Im new here, but not necessarily new to the forum world. Im installing a new outlet and I wanted to bounce the idea off some people and hopefully someone will know if what Im trying to do is safe/correct.

I just mounted a LCD to the wall in my bedroom and I installed a new 2 gang box to hold the coax and an outlet. The outlet is wired and I have the 14/2 running down through the wall about 3 feet and out a cold air return. I plan to drill through a stud since there is an outlet on the other side, about 6 inches away. The outlet is switched, top is hot and bottom is switched controlled. The outlet was installed with the push in wire connections on the back as opposed to the screw terminals. My question is this: Can I tap on to the top plug screw terminals for my new TV outlet with the romex I plan to run through the stud? Or is this unsafe for some reason? Im not sure how many outlets are currently on this breaker, but Im assuming it is just my bedroom which is 4 outlets, one of which is used. 15A circuit.

Thanks for any help!

Matt

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Old 01-21-2010, 09:53 AM   #2
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Branching off Switched Outlet


I suspect you would be introducing some potential safety issues if you include your coax cable in the same box as your 110V power. I also am concerned that running cable in a cold air return may be a problem. Hopefully, the smart folks can confirm or deny.

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Old 01-21-2010, 09:58 AM   #3
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Branching off Switched Outlet


It only runs about 12" along a stud in the cold air return. They used the space between studs/sheetrock as the venting. What would the safety issue be in having coax and 110 in the same box if it is grounded correctly?
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Old 01-21-2010, 11:23 AM   #4
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Branching off Switched Outlet


Without actually referring to printed NEC (National Electric Code), I'm thinking two (2) code violations here: 1) Running the wiring within "ductwork". 2) Running the electric wiring in the same box with communication and/or video cable without proper divider between the two. One of the HVAC guys need to step in here but, I'm also thinking that using the space between studs/sheetrock for venting is an HVAC code violation.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:15 PM   #5
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Branching off Switched Outlet


Quote:
What would the safety issue be in having coax and 110 in the same box if it is grounded correctly
I understand this is a potential code violation. I understand this to be because you introduce the possibility being electrocuted by a coax cable if the insulation breaks down or does not have enough resistance should it accidentally come in contact with 110V electricity.

I understand the issue with using HVAC chases as wire conduit has to do with toxic fume propogation in the event of fire.

Hopefully, we have smarter people than me that can confirm or deny.
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Old 01-21-2010, 03:38 PM   #6
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As long as you use a 2 gang box with voltage divider installed you are good to go.
The problem is finding a divider and the box to fit it at the local box store.
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Old 01-21-2010, 04:12 PM   #7
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I found a line in the NEC handbook that states that if the wires are separated by 2" or a fixed divider then they can be in the same box. Mine is at least that far so its good to go.

Im really more concerned with the branching off the switched outlet, as the thread title implies. Any input on that one?
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Old 01-22-2010, 05:56 AM   #8
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Branching off Switched Outlet


No problems of which I am aware. You may want to use wire nuts and pigtails to join your extension, but tapping into the unused screw is fine as far as I understand. I think I have seen posters who do not like to use receptacles in this way, but others claim it is fine. I would not put two wires on a single screw, but one of yours is the backstabbed, so not an issue.


Last edited by oberkc; 01-22-2010 at 06:00 AM.
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