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Code Clusters: Hey, at Least it’s Not a Fruit Cake Tin!


Code Clusters is a fond look back at some of the most interesting and outlandish Code violations published in the pages of EC&M magazine over the past 15 years — the item below is the second in a series of 10. Questions? Comments? We’d love to hear your feedback! Post your thoughts in the box below.


NEC Violations Illustrated - Cookie Tin 1

Hey, at Least it’s not a Fruit Cake Tin!

All references are based on the 2011 edition of the NEC.

What better way to enjoy the holidays than with a tin full of cookies, or a cookie-tin light fixture! While this may be creative, it is a Code violation.

NEC Violations Illustrated - Cookie Tin 2Luminaires and lampholders “shall be listed” in accordance with 410.6 of the NEC. This definitely wasn’t sent to a testing lab and approved for use as a luminaire. It’s also doubtful that a field inspection was performed at this location.

It appears as though the installer did not want to deal with the old “BX” wiring found in the ceiling box, so instead of ripping out the old box and replacing wires, he simply cut out the bottom of the cookie tin and installed it as a type of extension or canopy over the existing box. How is the equipment grounding continuity maintained? This could pose a dangerous shock hazard if this metal is not bonded and grounded. This is a violation of 410.42.

There are also razor sharp edges and jagged metal present that could easily damage the conductor insulation. This is a violation of 410.56(B). Could the branch circuit wires overheat? They certainly could. This is a violation of 410.74.

Most everyone loves cookies, especially around holiday time, but this may be one time that a fruit cake would have been the better choice — one that comes in a wrapper, not a tin can!

See next violation: Is That a Church Cross?

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