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Old 09-12-2011, 12:31 PM   #1
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Wire through ceiling or walls?


Hello all, first time posting. I am running two 20 amp circuits using 12/2 and 12/3 NM cable in my mancave, an 8' x 8' part of our carriage house out back.

The question is simple. Is it better to run the wires through the ceiling or the walls?

My main concern: temperature. there will only be a 3 1/2" space in the ceiling when finished, and in summer it gets pretty hot up there. I am studying code and I know according to NEC Table 310.13(A) THHN has a maximum operating temperature of 197 degrees F.

I know the ambient temperature will probably be well over 100 degrees in the ceiling space, not including any loaded temperature of the cables. You can feel the radiant heat with your hand. The walls will certainly be cooler but the ceiling is safer in terms of chances of fastener penetration.

Bundling: up to one 12/3 + two 12/2 cables for about 1 foot in the ceiling and 30" in the wall.

Thanks for your advice.
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Old 09-12-2011, 02:23 PM   #2
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What is this circuit for? If pulling Romex, everything has already been figured in. As for what is better, it depends on the difficulty of the job. As for the ceiling, how do you plan on insulating that, along with the walls?



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Old 09-12-2011, 04:55 PM   #3
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One 20 amp circuit powers a small fridge, computer and audio gear. Another 20 amp circuit powers two lights, a small ac unit, a small electric space heater and one extra outlet.

The walls and ceiling will be insulated with R-13 nonfiberglass insulation.
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Old 09-12-2011, 05:04 PM   #4
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You only need 15 amp for the lighting. The fridge, I would put on a separate circuit from the computer and audio gear, plus place either on opposite legs, so you do not induce any noise into the electronic gear. The ac, space heater I would put them on separate 20 amp circuits each, and the extra outlet can come off the fridge circuit. So, you should have 1 15 amp for lighting, 4 20 amps. You can get by on a 60 amp sub-panel if placing the circuits in that space on a sub, if not pulling to the main panel.



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