GFCI For Wall Mounted Aquarium - Electrical - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 04-19-2010, 05:07 PM   #1
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GFCI for wall mounted aquarium

I'm in the process of installing a wall mounted aquarium (hangs like a plasma) in my den and want to install a power outlet to conceal the cord. I have two potential options to steal the power needed but wonder which is most practical and won't violate a code.

FYI - I live in Las Vegas, NV and the aquariums total power consumption is 410 watts. The house was built in 2003.

Option #1
There is a bathroom on the reverse of the wall I intend to hang the aquarium which has an exisiting single-gang outlet just 1 stud bay away from where I would like the new outlet on the other side of the wall. It is a standard outlet but appears to be the #2 outlet on a GFCI circuit which starts in the same bathroom. The line and load terminals are both connected (yellow romex which I assume is 12ga). I believe the load terminals service two other bathrooms. All combined I believe there is 5 power outlets on this circuit which looks like a 20A breaker from looking at the panel. May I simply make a pig tail and tap this outlet or does that cause problems with the rest of the GFCI circuit which is downstream? Some of my other concerns are whether it's legal to borrow from a bathroom for an adjecent room or if I can legally fit (3) 12/2 wires into a single gang box to make the splice?

Option #2
In the den, on the same wall, there's an existing single-gang outlet but several stud bays away. Obviously there would be a lot more work involved in pulling the wire. This particular outlet also has all four terminals connected and I'm not sure where or how many other outlets are connected to the serries. It also appears to have 12ga wiring. I have the same about whether it's okay to splice another wire into the same box using a pigtail as above? If that's okay, and I run the wire is it as simple as just using a GFCI receptacle at the end where I intend to land it?

Thanks for your help!!!
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Old 04-19-2010, 05:10 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by LOST VEGAS View Post
Ithe aquariums total power consumption is 410 watts.
How much of this is a motor load?
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Old 04-19-2010, 05:19 PM   #3
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Check your Las Vegas codes. Probably need arc fault rather than gfci.
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Old 04-19-2010, 06:22 PM   #4
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You can't use power from the bathroom, violates code

You can run from the other circuit, verify its not overloaded/high use 1st
Install a GFCI outlet...near water its a good idea
Use 12g wire - or the same gauge as what exists on that circuit

Under NEC 2008 new circuits (not bath, garage or laundry) should be AFCI protected....but since it is an existing circuit should be OK

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Old 04-19-2010, 06:58 PM   #5
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Depending on how you're trying to hide the cord, you might want to look into something like this (direct link to PDF).
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