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Old 05-30-2011, 03:35 AM   #1
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


One of the light fixtures was making crackling noises. I took it down and the old knob and tube wire completely disintegrated leaving just bare copper.

So I'm running new romex from the crawl space under the house up to the switch and then plan on running the second wire up the wall through the attic and to the fixture. The attic has less clearance than the crawl space under the house and is stuffed with blown (asbestos free) insulation.

I'm wondering what is proper way to secure the new romex cable. RIght now I'm just thinking to work the wire down under the blown insulation.
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Old 05-30-2011, 06:38 AM   #2
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


Wiring in the crawl space should be stapled to the bottom of the floor joists, or where it runs with a joist, about midway(but min of 1 1/2-2" from floor boards. In the attic, it can just lay on the ceiling joists, but fastening with staples is better. ALWAYS check local code, however.

Sounds to me like it is time to rewire the house. K&T wiring cannot be expanded or added to in most areas, and it can become a fire hazard. Expensive to do, yes, but how much to replace a house???

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Old 05-30-2011, 08:27 AM   #3
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


Wiring methods like NM etc that are fished are allowed to not be secured as the code would otherwise require. accessible methods would still need to be secured like with staples. This would include the accessible portion of attics.
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:34 AM   #4
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


Watch out for exposed K&T hiding under the insulation----It might be safest to kill the power to the house while you are crawling around in that attic.--Mike---
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:44 AM   #5
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


And you should never insulate over K&T. You've got a pile of kindling waiting for a spark.
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Old 05-30-2011, 03:13 PM   #6
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


Thanks for the input.

Where the attic clearance is to low to swing a hammer I'll just place the romex on the rafters and let the cellulose insulation cover it back up. Where I can swing a hammer I'll secure it with staples.

A similar question about running wires. Is it a hazard to run the wire with a few twist in it, or does it just look unprofessional if the wire does not lay completely flat. I started to secure the wire I ran under the house to the joist and I realized it is not completely flat. I don't want to pull it back out of the floor just for a couple of twist, but if it is a hazard or a code issue I'll do it.

Thanks for all the help.
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Old 05-30-2011, 03:18 PM   #7
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


A few twists in the romex is fine as far as code--It just looks a bit sloppy--Only you will know it's there.
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Old 05-30-2011, 06:32 PM   #8
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


In the attic the cable should be fastened(stapled or through holes) every four feet. If it is within 4 feet of the access hole it can't be on top of the joists without protection.
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Old 05-30-2011, 06:45 PM   #9
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In the attic the cable should be fastened(stapled or through holes) every four feet. If it is within 4 feet of the access hole it can't be on top of the joists without protection.
In the US under the NEC the cable requires protection within 7' of the access.
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Old 05-30-2011, 09:35 PM   #10
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


How would one typically "protect" romex coming from the light fixture?

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Old 05-30-2011, 10:08 PM   #11
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Proper way to run wire in ceiling?


Protect it by putting a running board beside or not running it on top of the ceiling joists. If run on top of the joist it is susceptible to being damaged by having stuff piled on top of it.

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