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Old 08-23-2008, 10:13 AM   #1
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How to test this circuit?


I have installed a group of landscape lights and want to be sure all are connected correctly. The end of the run is not yet connected to the main panel. I have a piece of 18-3 wire with a plug on the end wjich I took off an old appliance. What I'd like to do is take this wire, plug it into outside outlet, and then connect the end of the 18-3 wire with wire nuts to the end of the wire run for the outside lights which is 12-2 wire. Can I do this without causing any harm as a test?

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Old 08-23-2008, 11:49 AM   #2
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How to test this circuit?


The test will work just fine IF the landscape lights are 120 volts. Most landscape lights are 12 volt, and applying 120 volts to them will completely destroy the bulbs, and maybe the sockets as well.

If they are indeed 120 volts, use a GFI receptacle to test them. If it doesn't trip the GFI, then you have no ground faults. If it does, then you have a bit of troubleshooting to do. In the end, they'll need to be connected to a GFI anyway, so testing with one makes a lot of sense.

Rob

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Old 08-23-2008, 12:00 PM   #3
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How to test this circuit?


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Originally Posted by rockee View Post
What I'd like to do is take this wire, plug it into outside outlet, and then connect the end of the 18-3 wire with wire nuts to the end of the wire run for the outside lights which is 12-2 wire.
I agree with everything Rob mentions, esp. knowing how to differentiate between LV and line-voltage units.

Re-read my snip from your original post. You'll want to connect the wires first and then plug it in! The GFCI is a must.
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Old 08-23-2008, 01:51 PM   #4
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How to test this circuit?


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Originally Posted by BigJimmy View Post
I agree with everything Rob mentions, esp. knowing how to differentiate between LV and line-voltage units.

Re-read my snip from your original post. You'll want to connect the wires first and then plug it in! The GFCI is a must.
You guys confirmed I am on the right track. i chose to go the line voltage route (120 volts, not low voltagee) for landscape lights. I dug all trenches myself and used 12-2 UF cable.The lights are 75 watt halogen, 150 halogen, and 100 incandescent. The outlet i plan to connect them to is an outside GFI. So, am I good to go to test this?
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Old 08-23-2008, 03:48 PM   #5
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How to test this circuit?


Yes indeed, your test will go just fine. As Jimmy stated, wire nut the cord to the UF first, then plug it in. That way, you're not working anything hot.

Rob

P.S. If there's more than about 10 amps on the circuit, the 18/3 will heat up fairly quickly, but it'll be OK for a test.

Rob
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:27 PM   #6
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How to test this circuit?


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Originally Posted by micromind View Post
Yes indeed, your test will go just fine. As Jimmy stated, wire nut the cord to the UF first, then plug it in. That way, you're not working anything hot.

Rob

P.S. If there's more than about 10 amps on the circuit, the 18/3 will heat up fairly quickly, but it'll be OK for a test.

Rob

Yes, I did wirenut the cord to the 12-2 first and then plugged in. Actually I switched to a 14 wire which I plugged into the GFI, and then the 18 into that. The test worked!

Thanks for the help!

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