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Old 07-03-2010, 09:47 PM   #1
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Wire through cinder block


Is it against code to pass BX wire through a cinder block to get on the other side? Both sides are indoors, though one side is a damper area as there is less air circulation. I am planning on adding some lighting to the crawlspace under my garage and it's cinder block all around, even the indoor side, and the ceiling is concrete, so easiest way is to pass the wire through the brick.

I'm guessing I can't do this with romex, or can I? since if yes I'll just use romex, but I'm thinking BX may be better fit for this application.

Also what is the best way to mount a light junction box to a cinder block wall? I'm thinking I first need to mount a piece of wood, then put the junction box on it. I'd just use special cement screws for the wood I guess?

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Old 07-04-2010, 12:02 AM   #2
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Wire through cinder block


You'll be ok with UF,not NM

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Last edited by bobelectric; 07-04-2010 at 07:27 AM.
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Old 07-04-2010, 12:36 AM   #3
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Wire through cinder block


you can put a sleeve through the block of either EMT or PVC conduit and then pass the NM through that. If the block is a firewall, you will need to caulk any openings with rated caulk. If not a fire wall, you can use any caulk.

What I would do is mount a junction box on each side of the wall with a length of EMT between the two boxes and use THWN wire to run from box to box. You can then run NM to the boxes and on to the rest of your branch circuit.
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Old 07-04-2010, 03:21 PM   #4
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Wire through cinder block


I was thinking of using a small piece of conduit too, I might go that route. I will most likely do this on both sides, instead of running the wire inside the crawlspace to the next socket.
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Old 07-04-2010, 03:30 PM   #5
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Wire through cinder block


Both sides? You just run one continuous piece through the entire wall (block) so it is protected the entire distance. You might want to consider plastic bushings on the ends of the conduit to protect the NM from the conduit. I like these:

http://www.arlcatalog.com/EMT/Insulating%20Bushings.htm
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Old 07-04-2010, 03:54 PM   #6
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Wire through cinder block


Actually I was not really clear, I meant both sides of the crawlspace, it is divided by a huge beam, so I need a light on both sides. Though the more I think about it, This is probably the best way to go about it (pic). What is the best way to mount the wire or conduit to concrete? Should I use pipe brackets with masonry screws, or is there a better way that has less risk of causing cracks?
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Old 07-04-2010, 04:10 PM   #7
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Wire through cinder block


I see.

for concrete, I like tapcons for fasteners and then, whatever type of strap that will properly hold the the conduit or nm.



for blocks, I prefer hollow wall anchors or AJ's as some guys call them. Typically for something like this, I would use anchors for 1/4-20 machine screws, and then, of course, a proper strap.


the problem with this type of anchor is the tool required to install them is somewhere around $35-$50. If you only use it once in a long while, it isn't worth using this system.

I stay away from just a screw for blocks. They are not actually very hard or solid so a screw often pulls out.

A plastic anchor would work ok if there is no abuse to the pipe once in place.
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Old 07-04-2010, 04:39 PM   #8
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Wire through cinder block


Plastic anchor might be my best route then. So would I drill a hole, put the anchor in, then screw into it same way as I'd do with drywall?
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Old 07-04-2010, 05:09 PM   #9
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Wire through cinder block


Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Squirrel View Post
Plastic anchor might be my best route then. So would I drill a hole, put the anchor in, then screw into it same way as I'd do with drywall?
drill hole

insert plastic anchor

place j-box, pipe strap, etc.

put screw through hole


twist until seated.

If you have a battery operated screw gun, that is the best way to install the screw. I have done them by hand and if only a few, it's ok. You need to be able to stop the rotation instantly and a battery screw gun allows that.
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Old 07-04-2010, 05:45 PM   #10
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Wire through cinder block


Perfect, think that's going to be the easiest route, when I'm ready to do this I'll go buy the stuff needed. Will be nice to actually have some light in there.

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