I need to lengthen some old wiring in order to make all the wires of a 3-way
switch come together in a recessed lighting box that I am installing in a
first floor ceiling (no insulation).
In doing some web research, I see that splices can be done, but they must be
done in a junction box, and must be accessible.
It is the second part that is confusing me. How can I make the junction box
accessible when I just need to lengthen the wire by about a foot in the
ceiling of a finished area? It wouldn't be a big deal to remove the light
fixture, but "accessible" to me means the box is visible or in some access
I've used Carlon boxes before in walls. So you're saying I need to put a
box in the ceiling with a cover? Man, that would be ugly.
Yep, you got it. I found a loose butt splice buried in the wall behind
the medicine cabinet, when I cleaned up the wiring in the bathroom
shortly after moving in here. Thankfully it was a low-draw circuit and
hadn't started any fires, and I had access from the attic to drop a new
When you say first floor, I assume there is no access from above? Are
the wires in the joist spaces floating or stapled? Which way do they
run? Any way you can add a junction box in a closet ceiling or some
place it won't look horrible, and fish the wires there? Or can you get
to the far end of the wire, and use the existing wire to pull a new
longer wire? Wire costs a lot more than it used to, but it is still
cheaper than patching wallboard and repainting. Any other way you can
fish new wire and just abandon the existing wires in place? Really hard
to offer advice without seeing the room. You may wanna consider hiring
one of those moonlighting or semi-retired electricians that advertise in
the ad papers, to come take a look. Make sure they have 'old work'
experience. They usually know a few tricks about fishing wires, and
other ways to lay out a circuit.
If you are using the junction box to support the light fixture then you are
fine in doing that. Fixture boxes are frequently used as junction boxes.
Just make sure that the box is deep enough for all of the wires.
What "accessible" means _to_you_ is not relevant. What _is_ relevant is its
meaning in the National Electrical Code: "Capable of being removed or exposed
without damaging the building structure or finish, or not permanently closed
in by the structure or finish of the building."
What's above the ceiling?
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Actually if you can remove the new ceiling box and access the old one
witthout disturbing the buildiing finish it is accessible. That is the
way you get to the box in a recessed can.
I am thinking big hole, big goof ring around the luminaire, preferably
with a big base.
The junction box of most recessed fixtures is designed for feed through
splices. Although it is essentially buried in the ceiling, it is legal
because it's accessible by simply removing part of the fixture . In you
situation, you may have too many conductors in the box
On Sat, 5 Apr 2008 17:00:11 -0400, "Buck Turgidson"
A regular electrical box with a solid plate cover, secured in place
with a screw is the usual. A plate might look untidy or perhaps
unprofessional by an inspector, and in that case buy a longer Romex
piece or move the fixture.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.