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Old 09-25-2011, 08:08 PM   #1
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


Hi, i'm hoping to install a new chandelier. my house was built in 1974, and i'm not sure exactly how old the wiring is.

on one of the two cords coming from the chandelier, the letters "18AWGX2C 105(degree symbol)C 300V" are printed.

looking at the junction box, there appears to be no letters printed anywhere to indicate whether this chandelier would be too much for it to handle.

is there a way to determine whether this would be a dangerous light to install?

(and on a side note...if it turns out to be safe, would the one cord with the letters printed on it be the "black" cord or the neutral "white" cord?

thanks!!

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Old 09-25-2011, 08:16 PM   #2
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


How many watts is the light fixture? I doubt there would any issue installing the fixture since the smallest gauge wire allowed to be used in house is #14 which is larger than the #18 on the fixture whip.

A bigger concern is how heavy is the chandelier? Can the ceiling box hold the weight?

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Old 09-25-2011, 10:19 PM   #3
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


Quote:
Originally Posted by 19mquinn79 View Post
.... my house was built in 1974, and i'm not sure exactly how old the wiring is....
I'd guess that your wiring is about 37 years old.

Same as the house.

Is the ceiling box metal or plastic?

Another thing to check: Many houses built in those days were wired with aluminum branch circuit conductors. I'd check to ensure yours wasn't one of them first.
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Old 09-25-2011, 10:23 PM   #4
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


The ribbed part or one side of zipcord is netural.

However as Joed have good point is the junction box will that hold the weight of the chandelier.

One option is have ceiling fan rated junction box they can support chandelier without issue at all { you may want to take a look at the rating on them }

Otherwise if you can get into attic you can run a two by four to give a addtional support if need to.

Oh yeah how many bulbs in that chandelier?

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Old 09-26-2011, 02:13 AM   #5
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


Quote:
Originally Posted by 19mquinn79 View Post
...would the one cord with the letters printed on it be the "black" cord or the neutral "white" cord?....
The marked conductor is always the "white" or neutral. Whether it is marked with lettering, or a ridge on the edge of the zip cord, or even a diagonal red stripe, they are all the neutral.
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Old 09-26-2011, 10:50 AM   #6
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


thanks everyone for the help!!

i am relieved that you guys don't think the temperature capacity of my house wiring won't be a problem.

Sorry to dwell on the issue, but I really want to be sure that I'm being safe. I found the following from an article about hanging a ceiling light:

Quote:
It's hard to believe, but many of the light fixtures now sold at home centers and lighting showrooms can't be safely installed in most houses wired before 1985. These fixtures are clearly labeled with a warning that reads “For supply connections, use wire rated for at least 90 degrees C.” The reason is simple: Fixtures with this label generate enough heat to damage the insulation on older wires and cause a fire hazard. Wires manufactured after 1985 are required to have coverings that can withstand the higher temperature.

If you know your wiring was installed before 1985, don't use fixtures requiring 90-degree–rated supply wires. To confirm that you have 90-degree–rated supply wire, look at the cable jacket or wire insulation. If you have plastic sheathed cable (often referred to as Romex), look for the letters NM-B or UF-B printed on the plastic sheath. If your wiring is fed through conduit, look on the wire insulation for the letters THHN or THWN-2. If you're still unsure, either call an electrician or choose a fixture that isn't labeled with a supply wire temperature requirement.
what do you think? my wiring is apparently close to 40 years old. the letters "105 C" are printed on the fixture wire -- could this mean that at least 105-rated supply wires are needed?
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Old 09-26-2011, 10:57 AM   #7
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Those warning about pre-85 wiring is typically directed to fixture that fit flush to the ceiling and/or recessed lights. Fixtures where the heat from the bulbs is allowed to disapate into the air and not into the bulding wiring, like a chandelier, are normally without the warning. The problem is the heat from the bulbs rises up and slowly cooks the life out of the insulation and causes it to crack and fall off. Uninsulated wiring can cause fires.
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:01 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kbsparky View Post
I'd guess that your wiring is about 37 years old.

Same as the house.
Depends on when it was built in 1974. It could be as old and 37 years and 9 months old.....that is almost 38 years. And, we have no way of knowing how old that wire is.

(sorry....couldn't resist...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 19mquinn79 View Post
Hi, i'm hoping to install a new chandelier. my house was built in 1974, and i'm not sure exactly how old the wiring is.

on one of the two cords coming from the chandelier, the letters "18AWGX2C 105(degree symbol)C 300V" are printed.

looking at the junction box, there appears to be no letters printed anywhere to indicate whether this chandelier would be too much for it to handle.

is there a way to determine whether this would be a dangerous light to install?

(and on a side note...if it turns out to be safe, would the one cord with the letters printed on it be the "black" cord or the neutral "white" cord?

thanks!!
18 gauge wire? Can't be that many lights on it. Boy....that is some small wire.....I use that size for 4-20ma signal runs.......must be made in China.

But echoing the others....I think the bigger issue is weight.

One way to know.....put a block of wood up there with a couple of screws into the box. Then hang from it. If it holds your weight, it should hold the chandelier.....if it pulls out, then you now have a nice hole to install the right box.
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
Those warning about pre-85 wiring is typically directed to fixture that fit flush to the ceiling and/or recessed lights. Fixtures where the heat from the bulbs is allowed to disapate into the air and not into the bulding wiring, like a chandelier, are normally without the warning. The problem is the heat from the bulbs rises up and slowly cooks the life out of the insulation and causes it to crack and fall off. Uninsulated wiring can cause fires.
that is good to hear. so you think i'm good to go, despite the 105C warning?
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:17 AM   #10
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


If the light does not have the 90 degree warning, go ahead and hang it.
Make sure the box can hold the weight.
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:20 AM   #11
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


Quote:
Originally Posted by 19mquinn79 View Post
that is good to hear. so you think i'm good to go, despite the 105C warning?
Fixture wiring typically has a higher rating than building wire.

I think you will be fine as long as the box can support the fixture weight.
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Old 09-26-2011, 10:44 PM   #12
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
Depends on when it was built in 1974. It could be as old and 37 years and 9 months old.....that is almost 38 years. And, we have no way of knowing how old that wire is.

(sorry....couldn't resist...)
....
Look again at my quote:

Quote:
I'd guess that your wiring is about 37 years old.

Same as the house....
About 37 years allows for the variances you stated ...
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Old 09-26-2011, 10:46 PM   #13
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not sure if my wiring can handle light...


Quote:
Originally Posted by 19mquinn79 View Post
that is good to hear. so you think i'm good to go, despite the 105C warning?
That is not a warning per se. It is a maximum rating of that particular conductor. If something was that hot, you could not touch it without being burned ... (221 F)

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