rusted light fixture mounted underneath an awning

What’s Wrong Here? Hint: Rusted Fixture Remnants

Oct. 12, 2023
Think you know how this installation violates the NEC?

Hint: Rusted fixture remnants

The camera angle for this may be a little tricky, but I took this picture looking up, while I was walking along a sidewalk, and spotted this rusted light fixture mounted underneath an awning. The bottom of the fixture has completely rusted away! We can see the ballasts and internal wiring of this light fixture because so much of the fixture has rotted away. Section 410.10(A) requires luminaires in damp or wet locations to be installed so water cannot enter or accumulate inside the fixture. Luminaires installed in damp locations such as this, must be marked as suitable for damp or wet locations. According to Sec. 110.11, unless identified for the operating environment, equipment and conductors cannot be located in damp or wet locations, or where gases, fumes, vapors, liquids, or other agents where will have a deteriorating effect on the equipment or conductors. Perhaps in this case, the proximity to the salty ocean air played a role in severely rusting this fixture since this location was at a beachside town.

About the Author

Russ LeBlanc | Owner

Russ started in the electrical trade as an apprentice in 1985. He worked his way up to become a Journeyman Electrician and then eventually became a Master Electrician and Licensed Construction Supervisor. In 1999 Russ become an Electrical Instructor for The Peterson School of Engineering in Massachusetts where he developed his passion for teaching, and quickly became Department Head of Electrical Instruction. Russ has taught thousands of apprentices, electricians, engineers, inspectors, and other electrical professionals during his career as an instructor. He continues to provide electrical professionals with Electrical Code seminars, Arc-Flash Awareness training seminars and educational material through his LeBlanc Consulting Services in North Reading, MA whose specialty is educating electricians. He has been an active member of the NFPA Electrical Section and has authored hundreds of National Electrical Code proposals and comments which have become Code rules to improve the safety for the electrical industry. Russ is also an IAEI certified Electrical Inspector.

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