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Thread: 2014 NEC 210.52 question

  1. #1
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    2014 NEC 210.52 question

    Hi everyone –
    (To pre-empt some expected responses …. Yes, I will talk to the local electrical inspector but wanted some feedback before I do.)

    I am a builder having a friendly disagreement about code interpretation regarding receptacle locations. Talking about the 6’ distance compliance.
    The enclosed picture shows a built in bench with drawers, recessed into a wall. My specification called for the receptacle location above the seat as shown in the picture. The electrician, on his own, moved it into the baseboard claiming code requirement.

    2014 Code Language:

    210.52(A)(2) Wall Space. As used in this section, a wall space shall include the following:
    (1) Any space 600 mm (2 ft) or more in width (including space measured around corners) and unbroken along the floor line by doorways and similar openings, fireplaces, and fixed cabinets
    (2) The space occupied by fixed panels in exterior walls, excluding sliding panels
    (3) The space afforded by fixed room dividers, such as freestanding bar-type counters or railings

    I have two observations:
    1. Since the bench is a “fixed cabinet” (it even has storage drawers) it brakes the wall space and is excluded from the receptacle location requirement.
    2. Forgetting my argument above and assuming that it should be included by code, there is no reference in the code as to the height of the receptacles. Therefore, there is no reason why the outlet couldn’t have been located above the bench as specified by the owner and me and still comply with the 6’ distance requirement. The height in itself wouldn’t make it non-compliant.
    I welcome your comments.

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    The cabinet has a wall above it that is within the height required for receptacles therefore IMO you need a receptacle either in the toe space or above the cabinet
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis Alwon View Post
    The cabinet has a wall above it that is within the height required for receptacles therefore IMO you need a receptacle either in the toe space or above the cabinet
    Dennis i believe your comment was directed to the two choices presented by the OP.

    If the cabinet the built in is less than 12 ft. the required receptacles could be placed as an option to the left and right of the built in shown in the picture.

    No matter if a rec. was in the baseboard space or one to the left or right in the dry wall, their is nothing prohibiting a placement of a receptacle in the desired wall space as shown in the picture.

    i agree with Dennis a rec. place in the desired wall space could have satisfied the wall space placement required by the NEC.

    If the rec. is already cut into the base board as shown in the picture and it is OK with the home owner to leave it, there would be no reason one could not be cut in where the owner desires a rec.

    If the owner wants the base board replaced and the receptacle at the desired location, maybe still possible depending on basement, or opening the wall board and doing the repair.

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    To me the wall space is broken by the fixed cabinet so the height of the cabinet is irrelevant. The measurement begins at each edge of the cabinet and the space occupied by the cabinet is not part of the wall space just like the other things on the list, doorway, fireplace, etc.
    Rob

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    All responses based on the 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinzgauer View Post

    2. Forgetting my argument above and assuming that it should be included by code, there is no reference in the code as to the height of the receptacles.

    ]
    that is not exactly correct

    210.52 Dwelling Unit Receptacle Outlets.
    This section provides requirements for 125-volt, 15- and 20-ampere receptacle outlets. The receptacles required by this section shall be in addition to any receptacle that is:

    (4) Located more than 1.7 m (51/2 ft) above the floor

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    Quote Originally Posted by infinity View Post
    To me the wall space is broken by the fixed cabinet so the height of the cabinet is irrelevant. The measurement begins at each edge of the cabinet and the space occupied by the cabinet is not part of the wall space just like the other things on the list, doorway, fireplace, etc.
    i would except that argument, there is however wall space within the 5 1/2 feet that is not covered by the cabinet.
    some would except that the wall space not being covered by the cabinet should be included in the wall space measurement.

    i am under the 2008 code, i see in the section provided by the op it says wall space broken on the floor line
    Last edited by david; 01-13-18 at 10:25 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by david View Post
    i would except that argument, there is however wall space within the 5 1/2 feet that is not covered by the cabinet.
    some would except that the wall space not being covered by the cabinet should be included in the wall space measurement.

    i am under the 2008 code, i see in the section provided by the op it says wall space broken on the floor line
    Fixed cabinets was added in the 2011 NEC.

    The exceptions for not being part of the wall space are as follows (numbers added by me):

    1) doorways and similar openings
    2) fireplaces
    3) fixed cabinets

    There is no height minimum associated with anything on the list. Any of those items that break the wall space are exempt from the 6'/12' rule. If a fireplace were 4' high would that require a receptacle above it? The answer is no, same applies to a fixed cabinet.
    Rob

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    All responses based on the 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted

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    Quote Originally Posted by infinity View Post
    Fixed cabinets was added in the 2011 NEC.

    The exceptions for not being part of the wall space are as follows (numbers added by me):

    1) doorways and similar openings
    2) fireplaces
    3) fixed cabinets

    There is no height minimum associated with anything on the list. Any of those items that break the wall space are exempt from the 6'/12' rule. If a fireplace were 4' high would that require a receptacle above it? The answer is no, same applies to a fixed cabinet.
    i agree with the language fixed cabinets broken along the floor line, just wasn't in the 2008

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    Quote Originally Posted by infinity View Post
    Fixed cabinets was added in the 2011 NEC.

    The exceptions for not being part of the wall space are as follows (numbers added by me):

    1) doorways and similar openings
    2) fireplaces
    3) fixed cabinets

    There is no height minimum associated with anything on the list. Any of those items that break the wall space are exempt from the 6'/12' rule. If a fireplace were 4' high would that require a receptacle above it? The answer is no, same applies to a fixed cabinet.
    So actually there should have been a rec to the left and right of the cabinet no greater than six feet from the ends of the cabinet.

    The electrician likely took a measurement off the rec. he placed in the baseboard.

    I would still allow a 12 ft. measurement from that rec. since it is installed even if the next rec measured more than six ft from the end of the cabinet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by david View Post
    So actually there should have been a rec to the left and right of the cabinet no greater than six feet from the ends of the cabinet.
    I agree measuring 6' from each of the cabinets edges is what's required. I can see the thinking about the space above the cabinet being wall space but that is no different than the wall space above a door or fireplace, in all of those cases it does not count.
    Rob

    Moderator

    All responses based on the 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted

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