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Old 03-02-2010, 09:49 PM   #16
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Oh...that's ugly.


what do you mean "fire barrier" in the wall. If that is a duct space, how would it have a fire barrier in it?


and sometimes you just have to make a hole where you didn't want to have to put one. That's the breaks.
the horizontal 2x4 piece inside the studded wall...it prevents fire from going up inside the wall to the upper floors...the hole is drilled up through that...yea the more i look at it the more i dont like it either...but i have plasterboard walls and it sucks having to knock holes in that stuff since its so brittle
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Old 03-02-2010, 10:36 PM   #17
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Old 03-02-2010, 11:28 PM   #18
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the horizontal 2x4 piece inside the studded wall...it prevents fire from going up inside the wall to the upper floors...the hole is drilled up through that...yea the more i look at it the more i dont like it either...but i have plasterboard walls and it sucks having to knock holes in that stuff since its so brittle
so is the plenum going down? It looked blocked with something going down so I figured the plenum went up but with a fire stop in there, that didn;t make sense.

if the plenum goes down, can you remove the fire block, drill a hole to the next stud cavity to the left (in the pic) above where the fire block is, route the NM up through the neighboring stud cavity and then in to the currently used stud cavity and then continue up. When you get everything in place, re-install the fire blocking.
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Old 03-02-2010, 11:36 PM   #19
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so this is what i was talking about...the 12-2 is coming in from the side of the joist goes into the cold air duct and up the wall through a fire barrier partition...so theres maybe 8" of nm cable in the air space within the cold air duct and is not touching any metal part of the duct itself...the reason i had to run it this way is that the receptacle above it is between these joists...i intend to staple later but would an inspector have a problem with this you think?

Wow that looks exactly like my cold return duct area LOL. For some reason they went and did the same thing. There's a bunch of wires that pass through it. The thermostat is also just above and the thermostat wire runs partially in it too. I don't get why people would do this.

As far safety, I don't know how big of an issue it is, as long as the wires arn't in a position to get cut against sharp edges. Still not the right way imo though. Just ghetto.
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Old 03-03-2010, 06:23 AM   #20
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heres a better diagram of whats going on...i guess a worthy note is that this is the start of the cold air return...the ducting does DOES NOT run up through the wall and go upstairs...the cold air return is only ducted into the floor joists


Last edited by joseph2293; 03-03-2010 at 06:31 AM.
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Old 03-03-2010, 06:26 AM   #21
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so is the plenum going down? It looked blocked with something going down so I figured the plenum went up but with a fire stop in there, that didn;t make sense.

if the plenum goes down, can you remove the fire block, drill a hole to the next stud cavity to the left (in the pic) above where the fire block is, route the NM up through the neighboring stud cavity and then in to the currently used stud cavity and then continue up. When you get everything in place, re-install the fire blocking.
this is a good idea but with the limited space in that area i think it would be hard to remove that chunk of wood...but your right if i can get that out it would be easy to run wire that way because i think i could get my drill inside that space...but i'd just be afraid to damage the plasterboard
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Old 03-03-2010, 07:48 AM   #22
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I'd say that's much better then having the cable run inside the duct
Code I think states perpindicular is OK....but your run is shorter then that

Since you are drilling thru wood then there aren't any sharp edges ?
Then simply caulk the holes tight



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Old 03-03-2010, 08:09 AM   #23
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this is a good idea but with the limited space in that area i think it would be hard to remove that chunk of wood...but your right if i can get that out it would be easy to run wire that way because i think i could get my drill inside that space...but i'd just be afraid to damage the plasterboard
not sure how much space you have but couple of ideas. It my take a right angle drill to do this.


drill out the blocking with a hole saw or large drill bit until you have it in enough pieces and sawdust to be able to get a pry bar in at the edge and pry it downward. Lots of fun but I have been successful in similar endeavors.

then, drill the stud to the left as I suggested and the plate of the stud cavity of the cavity to the left, pull your wire and then re-install blocking where you need it.

viola` we now have a legal install.

and welcome to the world of an electrician. Not always fun, not always easy but quite often a real pain in the butt
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Old 03-03-2010, 08:43 AM   #24
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I'd say that's much better then having the cable run inside the duct
Code I think states perpindicular is OK....but your run is shorter then that

Since you are drilling thru wood then there aren't any sharp edges ?
Then simply caulk the holes tight
thats exactly what i thought...if code requires it to be perpendicular to the joist i would think this requirement is to keep as little amount of the nm cable out of the cold air duct as possible so that if it catches fire it minimizes the amount of toxic fumes within the ducting and spreading throughout the house...in this case there is less cable inside the duct than if it were run perpendicular through the ducting and its not touching any part of the ducting...it seems like it could be ok but then again slightly sloppy...its really not in the ducting space either...its right at the mouth of the cold air return...i definitely believe its much better than running it directly through the ducting itself however

i think the determining factor is going to be the inspector...you can really only think of it how they would see it...and i would tend to believe they would say that its sloppy and to run it like nap said...if i wasn't getting an inspection on everything i would probably just leave it but since i am...ill probably have some more work ahead of me
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Old 03-03-2010, 10:50 AM   #25
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if you understand the intent of allowing the cable to run perpendicular, you will realize that an inspector should tag this installation (although I will not bet they will). The reason they allow you to run perpendicular across a plenum space such as a stud cavity is because there is no reasonable alternative. In your situation, there is a reasonable alternative such as the one I suggested.

but, as you say, the intent is to minimize the NM exposed to the airflow and in your situation, the exposure would be quite minimal so they may very well accept it.

so, I wouldn't bet they wouldn't pass it as they may accept it but in case they don't, you do have at least one alternate installation. If the inspector does ding you on it, it gives you a chance to ask his opinion on a remedy. While he may offer nothing, he might also offer a method acceptable to him that is less troublesome than my method.
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Old 03-03-2010, 11:05 AM   #26
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if you understand the intent of allowing the cable to run perpendicular, you will realize that an inspector should tag this installation (although I will not bet they will). The reason they allow you to run perpendicular across a plenum space such as a stud cavity is because there is no reasonable alternative. In your situation, there is a reasonable alternative such as the one I suggested.

but, as you say, the intent is to minimize the NM exposed to the airflow and in your situation, the exposure would be quite minimal so they may very well accept it.

so, I wouldn't bet they wouldn't pass it as they may accept it but in case they don't, you do have at least one alternate installation. If the inspector does ding you on it, it gives you a chance to ask his opinion on a remedy. While he may offer nothing, he might also offer a method acceptable to him that is less troublesome than my method.
yea good advice because why do the extra work if it passes...ill just wait and see what he says about it
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