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Old 01-10-2009, 05:18 PM   #1
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New lights in basement


I'm finishing my basement and have added 8 outlets on a new 20 amp circuit. Currently there are two light sockets in the basement and I want to add three more. The circuit, which I've checked includes the lighting for the garage, laundry room, another bedroom, bathroom, and a smoke detector, volt. transformer (I think that's what it is. It goes to our alarm system) and sump pump. Two questions. One, is it ok that the sump pump is on the end of this circuit? Two, can I safely add three more lights to this circuit? I've added up the wattage of the lights I'm currently using (mixture of cfls and tube flourescentss) and it adds up to about 350 watts. I want to end up with one light that already is on its own switch staying that way and three new lights being added to the other light that's on a pull switch being on a new switch that I can add a dimmer to (I know I have to get special lights for this. A couple of options I've come up with, in no particular order:

1. Put the 3 new lights on a seperate circuit OR the sump pump on its own (I've heard they drain power when on).

2. Add a switch after the smoke detector and add the new lights there. There's currently only one light after that. The wire that comes in for the light, volt. trans. and the smoke detector doesn't go to the other light with the pull chain, but they're on the same circuit.

3. add lights after the light with pull chain (this light is the only thing before the sump pump, which is the last thing on the circuit).


Last edited by CooperChloe; 01-10-2009 at 05:19 PM. Reason: forgot something
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Old 01-10-2009, 05:47 PM   #2
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New lights in basement


There may be nothing wrong with that circuit, or adding to it, but I would not want to have all of that equipment/lighting and the smokes on the same circuit.
In some localities, the smoke alarms must be on their own circuit, and 2008 code (I believe) says that receptacles, and smoke alarms in a bedroom must be AFCI protected.

I would also put the sump on its own circuit, or perhaps on a 20A shared branch, but not with lighting.
If the sump causes the breaker to trip, you will need the lighting to find out what the problem is.

Just make sure your wire size is correct for the breaker rating: #14 for 15A, #12 for 20A, #10 for 30A.
Of course, you can use a larger wire than is required for the breaker.

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Old 01-10-2009, 07:27 PM   #3
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New lights in basement


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... In some localities, the smoke alarms must be on their own circuit, and 2008 code (I believe) says that receptacles, and smoke alarms in a bedroom must be AFCI protected....
If this is correct, and by code you must have all smoke alarms chained together (thats what they what here (along with carbon)) then all must be on an AFCI, correct ? or is there a way to power them seperatly (from different breakers) but also have them all "go off" if one goes off ?

Im gonna have four, three in hallway/basement, one in bedroom and planned on running them all off a single 15amp breaker (nothing else on breaker).

If that is a violation, can the three power off the single 15amp and have the one in the bedroom powered off the bedrooms AFCI and then run a "loose" single #14 wire in the attic and connect the bedrooms smoke to the other three ?

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Old 01-10-2009, 09:52 PM   #4
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Actually, I am mistaken about the AFCI.
2008 code, Article 760 section 41B states that NPLFA (Non Power-Limited Fire Alarm) or PLFA (Power Limited Fire Alarm) must be powered by an individual branch circuit.
Further, this code states that power shall NOT be supplied through Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter or Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupter.

Before reading this code, I believed that all receptacles and smoke alarms in bedrooms were required to be protected by AFCI, but that was not correct.
Receptacles in a bedroom must be AFCI, but not smoke or fire alarms.

The cables used to connect the alarms must also meet code, which means, that unless your alarm system is low-voltage and current limited, it requires standard NMB or other approved electrical cable.

For low-voltage, current limited alarms, there are separate rules on cabling.

Hope this helps
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Old 01-10-2009, 11:38 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by KE2KB View Post
Actually, I am mistaken about the AFCI.
2008 code, Article 760 section 41B states that NPLFA (Non Power-Limited Fire Alarm) or PLFA (Power Limited Fire Alarm) must be powered by an individual branch circuit.
Further, this code states that power shall NOT be supplied through Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter or Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupter.

Before reading this code, I believed that all receptacles and smoke alarms in bedrooms were required to be protected by AFCI, but that was not correct.
Receptacles in a bedroom must be AFCI, but not smoke or fire alarms.

Your misinterpreting the code, smoke alarms are completely different from smoke detectors...

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Old 01-11-2009, 12:57 AM   #6
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...smoke alarms are completely different from smoke detectors...
So smoke alarms need AFCI and smoke detectors do not ?

Myself, i used the wrong terminology cause i didn't know any better and thought the two where the same thing

Im gonna run it by the local inspector, but would like to have alittle insight before hand.

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Old 01-11-2009, 08:10 AM   #7
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So smoke alarms need AFCI and smoke detectors do not ?

Myself, i used the wrong terminology cause i didn't know any better and thought the two where the same thing

Im gonna run it by the local inspector, but would like to have alittle insight before hand.

_
No, I think you've got it backwards. What Chris posted is that smoke detectors not controlled by a master control panel are not covered under article 760 section 41B and therefore DO require AFCI protection when installed in a bedroom (or other sleeping quarters).

Interconnected smoke detectors DO NOT qualify as being controlled by a central panel (since there is none), so they would need to be installed by the same code as stand-alone AC powered detectors.

I think I've got this right now.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:11 AM   #8
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New lights in basement


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Originally Posted by iMisspell View Post
So smoke alarms need AFCI and smoke detectors do not ?

Myself, i used the wrong terminology cause i didn't know any better and thought the two where the same thing

Im gonna run it by the local inspector, but would like to have alittle insight before hand.

_
As defined in NFPA 72, residential smoke alarm systems (including interconnecting wiring) are not powered by a fire alarm system. Therefore, Art. 760 does not cover them. Fire alarm systems include fire detection and alarm notification, voice communications, guard's tour, sprinkler water flow, and sprinkler supervisory systems [760.1 FPN 1].
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:12 AM   #9
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No, I think you've got it backwards. What Chris posted is that smoke detectors not controlled by a master control panel are not covered under article 760 section 41B and therefore DO require AFCI protection when installed in a bedroom (or other sleeping quarters).

Interconnected smoke detectors DO NOT qualify as being controlled by a central panel (since there is none), so they would need to be installed by the same code as stand-alone AC powered detectors.

I think I've got this right now.

Yes, you do... As a sidenote, Connecticut has a state amendment so I do not have to AFCI my smokes.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:13 AM   #10
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Your misinterpreting the code, smoke alarms are completely different from smoke detectors...

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Chris; Thanks for the correction (once again). I guess I need to do a bit more reading.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:15 AM   #11
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Chris; Thanks for the correction (once again). I guess I need to do a bit more reading.
Not a problem, I am by far from knowing everything as well...
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:22 AM   #12
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Thanks for the explanations, helped alot.

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