NEC in the Facility

Commonly misunderstood/misapplied terms, Part 3

Commonly misunderstood/misapplied terms, Part 3.

Did you know there’s no such thing as a wirenut? What people usually mean by this misuse of a trade name is a twist-on pressure connector. Other commonly misused terms include:

  • Cutout box. This is a specific kind of enclosure. First of all, it's surface-mounted. A box that isn't designed for surface mounting isn't a cutout box. A cutout box also has swinging doors (or covers) secured directly to the walls of the box, and these doors (or covers) telescope with the walls of the box.
  • Dead front. This doesn't mean the front has no door. It means a person on the operating side of the equipment isn't exposed to live parts.
  • Dust-tight. A dust-tight enclosure may not be suitable for a high dust area. Why is this? The term means dust will not enter under specified test conditions. It doesn't mean dust absolutely cannot enter. You may need something beyond dust-tight to meet the Chapter 5 (Special Occupancies) requirements of your particular application.
  • Duty. Intermittent, periodic, short-time, and varying are all specific types of noncontinuous duty. Each has its own definition. This matters, especially when dealing with motors or utilization factor.
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