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Old 03-30-2010, 11:42 AM   #1
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DIY new elec circuits or do I need a pro?


I'm going to install two new electric circuits in the home i'm buying in SC. I know the breaker box has spare capacity.

I want a separate 30-amp circuit for an RV plug I'll install next to the house.

I also want a separate 20-amp (probably) circuit to a new free-standing storage building ("shed") we'll erect somewhere in the back yard, for my wife's gardening eqpt and my tools and small work bench. That won't take lots of power; all I have is an elec drill and occasionally a 7" circ saw, but it'll be nice to have lights in it.

What can I do, legally, and what must I have a licensed electrician do, legally? Of course, I'll check local codes in Anderson County, SC, but in general, what guidance can anyone give me?

Next: I'll bury the conduit for both circuits outdoors. How deep should that be, in SC clay?

Can I use PVC for the conduit or must I use metal?

Finally, what wire gauges should I use for the circuits I have in mind?

Lotsa questions, I know, but I hope I can get at least some direction here, and thanks in advance!

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Old 03-30-2010, 11:47 AM   #2
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DIY new elec circuits or do I need a pro?


The 30 amp RV receptacle could use 10-2 wiring if it is 120 volt.

A 20 amp circuit for the shed could be fed with 12-2 UF type cable. The receptacles should be GFI protected.

Burial depth would be 24" for a cable, or 18" for a PVC conduit.

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Answers based on the National Electrical Code. Local amendments may apply. Check with your local building officials.
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Old 03-30-2010, 11:50 AM   #3
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DIY new elec circuits or do I need a pro?


Local requirements detemine what you may or may not do. Assuming a 120 volt 30 amp circuit for the RV you will need 10-2 NM cable, the appropriate receptical, and a 30 amp sinngle pole breaker, if this is indoor wiring.

For the shed, 12-2 UF cable if the distance is not too far or pvc conduit. It may be buried as little as 12" deep if it is protected by a GFCI, either a receptacle or circuit breaker, otherwise 18".

Last edited by brric; 03-30-2010 at 11:55 AM.
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Old 03-30-2010, 12:53 PM   #4
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DIY new elec circuits or do I need a pro?


If you want things done legally, you should simply contact your building inspector and ask. The details on getting a building permit and who can do what vary greatly, even within the same state or county.

As an example, my state laws indicate a home owner can do electrical work in his own home. My county superseeds this rule and indicates that a home owner can do electrical work in his own home AFTER they pass an electrical exam. My city superseeds that rule and follows the state law. The next city over requires all electrical work to be done by a certified electrician.

Cost for permits seem to vary wildly as well. A recent discussion on a home owner wanting to add an electrical outlet with permits was going to cost about $100 for parts and permits. I recently got a building permit to finish my basement and the permit for the whole project was $50.
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Old 03-30-2010, 01:02 PM   #5
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DIY new elec circuits or do I need a pro?


Have you considered a small sub panel for the RV and the shed? I guess it would depend on where you are going to park the RV. If the RV is going to be parked close to the shed, I would go with the sub panel. I would use PVC conduit.

I live in Campobello SC. (City) and we can pull homeowners permits in Spartanburg county. I am fairly certain the same is true for Anderson.
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