Running 3 #10's (stranded) in 1-1/2" PVC conduit. Total run 75 feet. Does
code allow me to have a splice within the conduit? Seems like it is kind of
accessible since I can easily pull it from both ends in case of problems.
Two 90° bends are involved but I am using long sweeps.
Thanks for the info.
BTW, while I'm typically not a cheapskate, on my retirement allowance I
would rather not pay for a new roll of wire ($65) when I'm only shy a few
feet. Buying a single 75' piece, by the foot, will still set me back $30.
All replies appreciated.
Personally, I like the idea of adding a box. In fact, I would add 2.
75 feet sounds like a long way to pull #10 through PVC, especially if
you decide later to pull afew extra wires, which I assume is the
reason for using such a large diameter.
Of course, if it's underground, that gets a little more complicated.
Almost all 75 feet is underground, ergo, I cannot add boxes. Am using
1-1/2" conduit because it makes for easy pull and, by the way, is only a
little over $2 per 10 foot stick. Why use anything smaller?
Well, actually, you can -- you just have to bring the conduit up above ground
for the box containing the splice, then back underground to complete the run.
Possibly it would be convenient for you to have a receptacle above-ground at
BTW, if you're concerned about the cost of a full-length run of wire, keep an
eye out in your local newspaper for going-out-of-business sales at hardware
stores. When an Ace Hardware in my area closed a few years ago, I was able
to buy about a couple of *miles* of THHN wire (10, 12, and 14 gauge) for less
than a penny a foot. I may not ever need to buy that stuff again. <g>
Outside the already suggested obvious, then, you have one of two
choices--do the fully-right-code-compliant way or bite the bullet and
make the splice (on the assumption by the time there's a problem it
won't be yours to solve, anyway :) ).
If you do choose the splice route, just be sure it's made to handle the
underground conditions to be expected and sturdy enough mechanically to
handle the pull.
I had to repair a buried (no conduit) line to the well (wouldn't you
know that in an open area of a couple acres after eyeballing the run
from the pumphouse to the well I'd manage to set a post directly on the
run. If I'd been _trying_ to find it, otoh, I'd been all around.. :( ).
It's been almost 10 years so far w/ no problems so it can be done
physically; it's still not going to be code-compliant if that were to be
an issue (needing permits, etc., ...).
All in all, it would seem the extra investment in the wire is moderately
cheap given all else that must be going into the project (one assumes
there's something going on the end of the run... :) ).
Perhaps, even, one could get something back from the other wire via
Craig's list or similar to defray a portion of the outlay if $$ really
are _that_ tight...
Not 100% true any more.
There are now "T-Tap" devices approved by the NEC, UL, and CSA for
making connections without a junction box in non-accessible locations.
I would never use them or advise anyone to use them, but they are
(currently) legal and available.
Aluminum wire and Urea formadehyde insulation were both legal and
available in the not so distant past as well.
However, the NEC has not (yet) allowed a splice inside a conduit.
I wouldn't recommend a spliced connection in conduit. I don't believe code
allows it, but even if you made a successful soldered and insulated splice
that section of the wire would be "stiff" compared to the rest of the
flexible wire. It may make it more difficult to pull the wire through
conduit bends, and if the splice is not "mechanically" as strong as the
wire, you could pull the splice apart when pulling the cable. You would
never know if there is damage to the splice until you have an electrical
problem. For example, say a portion of the splice breaks but leaves a
strand or two of the stranded wire. It would work fine until put under
enough load to overheat the wire. This could melt the insulation on
adjoining cables and cause a short.
You didn't mention what this conduit run was for, but I suspect $30 for a
piece of wire is minimal compared to the rest of the project. Have you
compared the cost of the wire and conduit, against just running a bare UF
rated underground cable? If you're running conduit, you're probably
spending a little extra to do the job right and allow flexibility in the
future. Why cheap out on the last little piece of wire?
If you're REALLY strapped for cash, watch your local Craigslist for people
getting rid of electrical supplies, and/or post an ad that you're looking
for some. I sold a couple hundred feet of various cables a few months ago
for $10, and see contractors selling surplus all the time. There wouldn't
be any harm using a "larger" wire than you need (i.e. Using a #6 or #8
gauge wire in place of your #10), so that widens your options a bit.
If you're going to do the job, you might as well do it right...
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