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Old 02-05-2010, 03:34 PM   #1
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Electrical Box Wiring Question


Hi,

I am moving a wall light fixture in my bathroom (House built in 1976). Below is a picture of the current electrical box and the wiring. There are three thin wires on the right side of the box running up and down (into and out of the box). I donít know the purpose of these wires. There is an old phone jack to plug a phone in the wall so I am wondering if that is why they are there.

So I donít know if I should cut these three thin wires, cap them, remove the box and patch the hole after I move the box and fixture, or is I should just leave them in the box, leave the current box in the wall and patch over it or put some type of cover over it?

I also have a question about the ground wire. There is no ground wire coming out of the main line. There is the white line, the black line, and then it looks like another black line that has been cut very short. Is this the ground wire?

I would appreciate any advice you can give me!

Monica


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Old 02-05-2010, 03:47 PM   #2
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Electrical Box Wiring Question


That is your ground, it's not black tho it is bare.

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Old 02-05-2010, 04:36 PM   #3
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Electrical Box Wiring Question


I am just a homeowner but I wish I had a dime for every electrical screw up I have had to repair.
The picture tells me that an unqualified person did this wireing, for one thing they clipped the ground because it is not needed (IN THEIR OPINION). Another is that they did not use a romex clamp to secure the wire.
You may possibly have enough cable to pull enough to use the cutoff ground wire. I dought this is the case because many many times I have found that the "electrician" used just enough wire to make the connection or he drove the wire staple tight against the cable, inside the wall, and it is not movable.
The small wire is in question because the photo is not clear enough for me.
I am sure someone much more qualified then me will answer your questions and maby I can learn some more.
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Old 02-05-2010, 05:11 PM   #4
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Electrical Box Wiring Question


You can open the old phone jack safely,or unscrew it from the wall and see what type of wire is in the jack but from this picture it doesn't look like phone wire to me. Do your best to find the other end of the electric wire and disconnect (preferably remove) it before closing the wall
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Old 02-05-2010, 07:23 PM   #5
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Electrical Box Wiring Question


Looks to me like you have enough room to attach a pigtail grounding wire to the stubbed ground. You should install a grounding screw (green) into the metal box, and ground the box to the stubbed ground using a pigtail. Unless you can pull more wire through the box, then you may be able to directly connect the grounding wire to the box.
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Old 02-05-2010, 07:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OmahaGirl View Post
I am moving a wall light fixture in my bathroom (House built in 1976). Below is a picture of the current electrical box and the wiring. There are three thin wires on the right side of the box running up and down (into and out of the box). I donít know the purpose of these wires. There is an old phone jack to plug a phone in the wall so I am wondering if that is why they are there.

So I donít know if I should cut these three thin wires, cap them, remove the box and patch the hole after I move the box and fixture, or is I should just leave them in the box, leave the current box in the wall and patch over it or put some type of cover over it?

I also have a question about the ground wire. There is no ground wire coming out of the main line. There is the white line, the black line, and then it looks like another black line that has been cut very short. Is this the ground wire?
Where are you moving the new fixture/box ?
Will the existing wire reach where the new box will be ?
The small wires could be a thermostat, phone, alarm, doorbell ?

All live wires must be left in a box & the box CAN"T be covered over (IE with drywall etc)
It must have a cover & be accessible at all times
If you remove all wires form the box then you can remove the box & patch the hole
But these wires must be completely disconnected from any & all live connections 1st
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Old 02-05-2010, 07:53 PM   #7
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Electrical Box Wiring Question


Were you planning on re-using this box and wire at the new location?Octogon boxes usually work better for lighting fixtures.If your re-using this wire you cannot splice onto it and hide the splice in the wall.
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Old 02-06-2010, 09:17 AM   #8
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One thing not mentioned yet...The 3 "thin wires" would be low voltage wires...as mentioned, thermostat, phone, alarm, doorbell, etc. and unlikely to be rated to withstand the voltage of the other circuit (not to mention the potential amperage if it were to short circuit) also present in the junction box, in this case, 120 volts. Maybe they are, but probably not. If that is the case, they can't occupy the same junction box without a suitable divider. Most of the time in residential, in my area, we just run low voltage wiring through the walls and framing members and use boxes at termination points...depending on the situation.

Why the "electrician" passed the low voltage wires through the j-box instead of going around it...??? Easier than doing it correctly ?? Ahh...once again...the perils of my brothers friends uncles cousins neighbor...
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Old 02-18-2010, 03:11 AM   #9
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Were you planning on re-using this box and wire at the new location?Octogon boxes usually work better for lighting fixtures.If your re-using this wire you cannot splice onto it and hide the splice in the wall.
So you can't splice a your wires say if your light is going in the same spot but the the wiring from the box does not reach the wiring from the lighting?
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Old 02-18-2010, 09:03 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Ukrainianoiler View Post
So you can't splice a your wires say if your light is going in the same spot but the the wiring from the box does not reach the wiring from the lighting?
Sure you can, as long as the splice is in an accessible Junction Box. He meant you cannot cover up an old j-box with an active splice inside it with drywall and make it inaccessible.

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