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. Joe Tedesco, who has a knack for finding shoddy electrical work, did the dirty work and found this mess. Now it's your turn to identify the violation.
A Virginia-based home inspector recently shared these photos with me, indicating that this type of workmanship was fairly common practice in this area. They depict some residential wiring work that had just passed inspection. He was not only concerned about the poor workmanship, but also wondered how all the branch circuits running through a single CE connector, along with the CE cable, could have possibly met local code requirements. He also noticed that the RG6 cable was run right alongside all the home runs.
In this first photograph, the bundle of cables running through the top of this cabinet will not pass a rough inspection because each cable is required to be secured to the cabinet with a proper type of fitting [312.5(C)]. Although some fittings are designed for more that one cable, this installation is extreme.
An Exception to 312.5 states “Cables with entirely nonmetallic sheaths shall be permitted to enter the top of a surface-mounted enclosure through one or more nonflexible raceways not less than 450 mm (18 in.) and not more than 3.0 m (10 ft) in length, provided all of the following conditions are met:
In this second photograph, the mixing of cable types passing through the same hole in the structural member can also be cited. For example, rules in Chapter 8 require a space between the power and low energy system cables. Coaxial cables and network-powered broadband cables are required to be separated at least 50 mm (2 in.) from conductors of any electric light, power, Class 1, non–power-limited fire alarm, or medium power network-powered broadband communications circuits.