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Old 07-04-2017, 09:41 PM   #1
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Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


The electrician installed 2 switches (1 triple switch and 1 single pole single switch) in a two gang box and with all the wires it is too crowded to press the switches in and put the cover plate on.

The electrical installation was done before the drywall was installed so at the time it seemed okay to leave the switches dangling. I didn't realize they wouldn't fit.

Now I need to consider alternatives. One alternative is to remove the 2-gang box and replace it with a 3-gang box to give excess wiring some elbow room. Or, reduce the bulk of the wires by consolidating the wires but I can't see how.

Opinions, tips, tricks, solutions, links are welcome.
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Last edited by lorikoliver; 07-04-2017 at 09:47 PM.
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Old 07-04-2017, 10:06 PM   #2
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


Unless the box is smaller than 30 cu in which I doubt, it is large enough. You need to learn how to fold the wires. The grounds need to be consolidated and leave 2 pigtails.

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Old 07-05-2017, 05:55 AM   #3
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


If this is protected by a 15 amp breaker you are ok. Your "electrician" mixed 12 gauge and 14 gauge in the box. I don't understand why he didn't twist all the ground wires and leave two pigtails, either.
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Old 07-06-2017, 02:35 AM   #4
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


My Carlon catalog shows that box has a volume of 32 cubic inches. You're currently at 33.75 in3 of box fill. Either your electrician didn't understand how to do box fill calculations or is very bad at math.

Switching to a three gang box is certainly one way to solve the problem. But if you wish to remain with a two gang box there are other options available. Do you have access to the wall behind the box? How much drywall patching are you willing to do?
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Old 07-06-2017, 02:38 AM   #5
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


Quote:
Originally Posted by chandler48 View Post
If this is protected by a 15 amp breaker you are ok. Your "electrician" mixed 12 gauge and 14 gauge in the box.
Look again. The two white cables are actually wider than the newer yellow ones. None of the insulated conductors are smaller than the ones known to be 12 gauge. There are no 14 gauge bare equipment grounding conductors present.

The two white NM cables are 12 gauge, just not new enough to be color coded.
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Old 07-06-2017, 05:08 AM   #6
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


It does appear to be so. Wonder how he came across the older sheathed 12 nm ?? Unless they were original to the box. Good catch.
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Old 07-06-2017, 09:29 AM   #7
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


Thank you, everyone. The problem has been resolved. The electrician returned and made everything fit, all tight, safe and secure.
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Old 07-06-2017, 09:32 AM   #8
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Re: Jungle of Wires in 2-gang box too tight


Like shoving 5#s of sht in a 3# bag!
Lol

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