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Old 01-17-2012, 02:51 PM   #1
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Wiring Scheme for Bathroom Vanity Lights


I am making some changes to lights over vanity area and ran into something that raised a couple of questions. There are currently two vanity fixtures, each fixture has approx. 200watts, and the original wiring had two (one for each light fixture) separate cables and separate wire paths through the studs to a single switch. This was in spite of the fact that the fixtures are only approx. 4 feet apart and the switch is only another approx. 6 feet away. It seems that it would have been easier and cheaper to just run them in parallel on one cable as I don't think there would be enough voltage drop for these dimensions and wattages to make any difference. Am I missing something - was this required by code or was this just someone's preference?

Second question, I'm keeping those two fixture locations and associated wiring, but will be adding three additional small sconces in same wall on a separate switch. As I mentioned, those existing fixtures utilize two separate series of holes through the wall studs to travel to the two fixtures. I plan to just wire up my three sconces parallel on one cable, but am I allowed to run my new cable through those existing holes along with the existing cables so that I don't have to make my wall studs look like swiss cheese by adding even more holes for the my new wire run? I think the limit for a 2 x 4 is 7/16" dia. hole and I believe that is what is currently there, so should easily accomodate another wire, but I can't seem to find any discussion of limitations for running multiple wires through a single hole in the studs. Is that acceptable? Thanks for your assistance.


Last edited by DAKRO; 01-17-2012 at 03:12 PM.
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Old 01-17-2012, 03:05 PM   #2
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Wiring Scheme for Bathroom Vanity Lights


Quote:
Originally Posted by DAKRO View Post
I am making some changes...
(sniiiiiiiiiiiiiip a bunch of design aspect chatter)
...but am I allowed to run my new cable through those existing holes along with the existing cables so that I don't have to make my wall studs look like swiss cheese by adding even more holes for the my new wire run?
Probably; it depends on hole size and number of conductors etc.

Quote:
I think the limit for a 2 x 4 is 1 7/16" dia. hole
and I believe that is what is currently there...
Do you know what a nail plate is?
A nearly 1.5" hole in a vanity wall stud is way, way big.

In short... the smallest hole needed to pass the required wire through it should be drilled nearest to the center of the stud as possible.

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Old 01-17-2012, 03:14 PM   #3
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Wiring Scheme for Bathroom Vanity Lights


Thanks for the catch - I meant 7/16" hole , NOT 1 7/16" so sorry for misleading. I editied original post. I think 7/16" could physically handle 2 cables without being too tight.
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Old 01-17-2012, 03:18 PM   #4
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Wiring Scheme for Bathroom Vanity Lights


Yes, I use nail plates everywhere I open a wall and see any risk of damage that might exist from future blind drilling, etc., but there are no prior existing nail plates as this home is approx. 36 years old.
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Old 01-17-2012, 03:20 PM   #5
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Wiring Scheme for Bathroom Vanity Lights


Quote:
Originally Posted by DAKRO View Post
Thanks for the catch - I meant 7/16" hole , NOT 1 7/16" so sorry for misleading. I editied original post. I think 7/16" could physically handle 2 cables without being too tight.

Shouldn't be an issue seeing you can fish them through the holes without having to tug excessively on the wire.

Two separate cables isn't really wrong, although not very efficient. It allows you to use individual switches for the lights if that tickles you.
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Old 01-17-2012, 03:21 PM   #6
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Wiring Scheme for Bathroom Vanity Lights


Quote:
Originally Posted by DAKRO
Thanks for the catch - I meant 7/16" hole , NOT 1 7/16" so sorry for misleading. I editied original post. I think 7/16" could physically handle 2 cables without being too tight.
You can add multiple wires to one hole. You can drill a 1" without an issue. However if the hole is closer than an 1"1/4 to the edge you will need a nail plate.

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