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What’s Wrong Here? June 2011

What’s Wrong Here? June 2011

Can you identify the Code violation(s) in this photo?


Can you identify the Code violation(s) in this photo?

Hint: Heat zone

Find the Answer

How well do you know the Code? Think you can spot violations the original installer either ignored or couldn’t identify? Here’s your chance to moonlight as an electrical inspector and second-guess someone else’s work from the safety of your living room or office. Can you identify the Code violation(s) in this photo?

‘Tell Them What They’ve Won...’

Using the 2011 NEC, correctly identify the Code sections that show violation(s) in this month’s photo — in 200 words or less — and you could win something to put in your tool­box. E-mail your response to [email protected], and we’ll select three winners (excluding manufacturers and prior winners) at random from the correct submissions. Winners will receive a set of insulated hand tools from Ideal Industries, Inc., valued at more than $125.* The set includes 9.25-in. insulated side-cutting pliers, 10-in. insulated tongue-and-groove pliers, and a 0.25-in. 3 6-in. insulated screwdriver. (* Please allow six to eight weeks for delivery of tools.)


Our two winners this month are Tom Mathews, senior engineer with Robinson Engineering in Frankfort, Ill., and Mickey Culver with Mike’s Electric in Beaverton, Ore. Here’s a short recap of the violations they noted with this battered and bruised box.

The most obvious violation is that this box is not designed to be installed in damp or wet locations. As per 300.6, boxes shall be of materials suitable for the environment in which they are to be installed. Ferrous metal boxes shall be suitably protected against corrosion inside and outside. As noted in 314.15, “In damp or wet locations, boxes shall be placed or equipped so as to prevent moisture from entering or accumulating within the box, conduit body, or fittings. Boxes, conduit bodies, and fittings installed in wet locations shall be listed for use in wet locations.” In addition, the cover is not suitable for use in this environment [314.28(C)].

We can also cite some violations as related to the receptacles used here. Receptacles installed in wet locations must comply with the requirements of 406.9(B), which in part states, “15- and 20A, 125- and 250V receptacles installed in a wet location shall have an enclosure that is weather-proof whether or not the attachment plug cap is inserted.” Although this receptacle may be served from a GFI breaker, if it isn’t, then it must meet the requirements of 210.8(B)(4).

As for the physical protection of this box, one might also cite a violation of 110.27(B).

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