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roovane1 11-21-2010 02:01 PM

Install light fixture near water pipes
 
I want to install a wall lighting fixture in a bathroom and have it centered over a mirror. There is a stud behind the sheet rock where the fixture needs to be centered. Copper water pipes run along each side of the stud and connect to the sink below the mirror. I have a metal pancake box but I am concerned about using it in such close proximity to the water pipes. The house wiring is 3 wire (black, white & ground). The light fixture also has a ground wire. Can I use the metal pancake box? It probably would not be touching the pipes but would be within 1/2 inch...maybe less. Should I be using a plastic pancake? Thanks!

jamiedolan 11-21-2010 03:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by roovane1 (Post 538099)
I want to install a wall lighting fixture in a bathroom and have it centered over a mirror. There is a stud behind the sheet rock where the fixture needs to be centered. Copper water pipes run along each side of the stud and connect to the sink below the mirror. I have a metal pancake box but I am concerned about using it in such close proximity to the water pipes. The house wiring is 3 wire (black, white & ground). The light fixture also has a ground wire. Can I use the metal pancake box? It probably would not be touching the pipes but would be within 1/2 inch...maybe less. Should I be using a plastic pancake? Thanks!

I don't know of anything in the code that requires a certain distance from pipes for a regular junction box. There are size limits for boxes, but if you just have one wire going into the junction box connecting to the light, I think you will be okay. Make sure to use a green screen and connect the ground wire to the metal box.

Jamie

roovane1 11-21-2010 04:26 PM

Thanks Jaime. The light fixture has 4 black, 4 white and one ground wire. Is that too much for a pancake? Please forgive my ignorance, but what is a green screen? There is a green screw for the ground wire on the mounting strap.

roovane1 11-21-2010 04:27 PM

Thanks Jaime. The light fixture has 4 black, 4 white and one ground wire. Is that too much for a pancake? Please forgive my ignorance, but what is a green screen? There is a green screw for the ground wire on the mounting strap.

iminaquagmire 11-21-2010 04:37 PM

That's too many wires for a pancake. You'll have to find a straddle box. I believe I've seen them at lowes. If not, an electrical supply house should have them or could get you one.

http://www.arlcatalog.com/Fan_Specia...ng%20Boxes.htm

Jim Port 11-21-2010 07:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iminaquagmire (Post 538168)
That's too many wires for a pancake. You'll have to find a straddle box. I believe I've seen them at lowes. If not, an electrical supply house should have them or could get you one.

http://www.arlcatalog.com/Fan_Specia...ng%20Boxes.htm

The fixture wires are not included in the volume calculation, only the wires that are part of the premise wiring.

iminaquagmire 11-21-2010 10:17 PM

That's true, but what I meant was its tough enough to fit one set of wires in a pancake box, let alone an extra 6 wires. Why try when you can just use a different box?

jamiedolan 11-23-2010 11:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by roovane1 (Post 538166)
Thanks Jaime. The light fixture has 4 black, 4 white and one ground wire. Is that too much for a pancake? Please forgive my ignorance, but what is a green screen? There is a green screw for the ground wire on the mounting strap.

Sorry for the delay. The box size will be fine, you have room in the back of the fixture for the fixture wires. You can use the screw on the mounting strap as long as it is secured to the metal box with metal screws. I normally would attached the incoming ground to the box, and have the fixture wire tied to the mounting strap.

http://www.diychatroom.com/attachmen...ound-screw.jpg

Jamie


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