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Old 04-30-2010, 09:18 AM   #1
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Can light wiring


I am putting up can lights in my basement and have a question about wiring them. Can I just run the wire into the junction box and staple the wire to the joists or does it have to be clamped? I have included the instructions and it says it comes with "romex clamps" (fig3) but these are horrible. Once you pry out the tabs you have to push the clamp down and it is hard to work with and seems to cut into the sheathing. Can I just use the bigger pry outs on top\ends and run the wire in that way?




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Old 04-30-2010, 09:23 AM   #2
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You should clamp them. You can get 1/2" NM Cable clamps at a big box store. You knockout one of the holes on the junction box, and slide the male threaded end into the box, then tighten with the included locknut. Normally, you put in the clamp with the screws on the outside of the box.


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Old 04-30-2010, 09:41 AM   #3
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Is it against code not to use them?

Also, Do most people nail the lights up and then wire or run the wire and wire the lights and then put the lights up?

Thanks.
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Old 04-30-2010, 09:48 AM   #4
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Can light wiring


I'm not sure if it's against code but the clamps are cheap and much safer. If the wire were to get knicked on one of the edges it could cause problems. and you would have to open up the drywall to fix it. (definately spend the 50 cents on the clamps!)

I estimate the wire length, always over estimate. nail the light up,cut off excess wire, wire the light, then if needed add a few more staples to secure the wire to the joist.
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:27 AM   #5
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I tried a quick search through code (like on the key word "clamp"). I couldn't find any direct reference (like "MN cable entering a metalic box must be clamped") but there seemed to be several implied refferences that NM wire entering a metalic box would be clamped in some fashion.

At the very least, the purpose for the clamp is to ensure the wire doesn't get frayed from rubbing on the metal edges of the box. Once you knock out one of those plugs, you're going to have some small sharp edges.

The clamps secutanudu showed are pretty simple to use. It can be a little difficult getting the nut tightened (without the special tool made for it), but I've mannaged using a small pair of channel lock pliers. It's much easier to intall the clamps BEFORE you mount the light fixture in the ceiling. But once in place, the simple screws allow you to open the clamp plenty wide enough to get your wires in place, then screw them down to make a simple hold so they can't get accidently tugged out during the rest of construction.
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:30 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Abs777 View Post
Is it against code not to use them?

Also, Do most people nail the lights up and then wire or run the wire and wire the lights and then put the lights up?

Thanks.
I just finished installing a pair of these types of lights.
I would suggest you first double check the orientation of exactly where you are going to install the light, make sure you can access the wiring box (i.e. can open and close it AFTER the light is installed), determine which hole in the wire box will be the best to knock out to get your wire in the box (again AFTER the light has been installed) and insert the clamp. Then nail/screw the light in place and run the wire to the box the way you would to any other box.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:09 AM   #7
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Can light wiring


Romex must be installed in a clamp if going into a meatl opening.
You can use the one that is pictured above, or you can use plastic ones.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:11 AM   #8
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Can light wiring


on a related note, are you allowed to daisy-chain lights together? i'm finishing a basement and looking to put six lights on one switched circuit.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:16 AM   #9
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on a related note, are you allowed to daisy-chain lights together? i'm finishing a basement and looking to put six lights on one switched circuit.
Yes!!!
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:18 AM   #10
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Yes!!!
i figured as much. the reason i'm asking is in regards to the wiring box on the side of the can. these are thomas cans for new construction so once the ceiling is drywalled, wouldn't this technically be a junction box that has been sealed up and no longer accessible? or are these can lights exempt from such a requirement? or do i need to have some type of "access hatch" in the finished ceiling?
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:21 AM   #11
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No. The inside of the can is removable allowing access to the J-box.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:23 AM   #12
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No. The inside of the can is removable allowing access to the J-box.
really? i thought only the "remodel" kits had that feature. i played with the light a little bit and i can't figure out a way to access the junction box through the can after it is installed.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:30 AM   #13
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really? i thought only the "remodel" kits had that feature. i played with the light a little bit and i can't figure out a way to access the junction box through the can after it is installed.
I never siad it would be easy, but that is the way they are made.
If you look at the can, you see the j-box cover can be removed from both sides.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:36 AM   #14
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I never siad it would be easy, but that is the way they are made.
If you look at the can, you see the j-box cover can be removed from both sides.
i see that it can be removed from both sides but i can't see how to get through the can once it is installed. i'll take a second look when i get home. looking at some pictures online, it looks like there are a couple screws inside the can which connect the can to the "mounting ring" located in the ceiling.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:50 AM   #15
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I thought the same thing. Removing the screws would have to be the only way.

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