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Old 05-14-2020, 04:55 PM   #1
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Default Long distance run

I have a client with a panel inside his pantry in the house. I want to run emt from the panel on the wall for about eight feet and then through the wall to the outside of the house and put in a four circuit subpanel. From there I'm going to run 12/3 romex in 3/4 inch pvc in ground for 150 feet to an out shed. This will give him two twenty amp circuits at the shed. One for now and one for future use. I know romex isn't used for underground but it will be in pvc for the entire distance. Any problems with this scenario?
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:03 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by lmgoldstein View Post
I have a client with a panel inside his pantry in the house. I want to run emt from the panel on the wall for about eight feet and then through the wall to the outside of the house and put in a four circuit subpanel. From there I'm going to run 12/3 romex in 3/4 inch pvc in ground for 150 feet to an out shed. This will give him two twenty amp circuits at the shed. One for now and one for future use. I know romex isn't used for underground but it will be in pvc for the entire distance. Any problems with this scenario?
Yes, the main issue I see is that you're considering knowingly violating both the listing of NM cable and the code sections that govern its installation. If you're taking the time to trench in 3/4" PVC, I can't seem to figure out why any sensible electrician would even fool around with pulling NM in such a crappy situation. Most guys would put in a bigger conduit and allow for either the installation of more circuits in the future, or pull larger conductors to begin with and add another subpanel.

There's a pretty common statement when it comes to outbuildings: Wire and pipe are cheap, digging is not. That statement holds almost universally true and I highly recommend that you reconsider your plan here. There are a lot of issues: improper use of NM cable, voltage drop (nearly 6% at 120V/15A), the difficulty of pulling NM in conduit, and the inherent limitations of only having two 120V/20A circuits available.

If I were on the job, I'd throw a 2" conduit in the ground, pull 2AWG aluminum, and put it all on a 90A breaker with a 20 to 30 circuit panel on the other end. Quick, easy, and you'll never have a callback because there's not enough power. You're already digging the trench and the width isn't what's hard, it's the depth. If you're there already, why skimp?

Not to be that jerk, but are you a licensed and qualified electrician? Most electricians wouldn't even consider doing something like this for a new install...

EDIT: Also, your profile doesn't appear to be filled out. The rules of this site require that all users must complete these fields and some users can be less than friendly if it's not completed.

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Old 05-14-2020, 05:08 PM   #3
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Please fill out your profile. Your post sounds like you're a handyman/trunkslammer. Tnx


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I have to go the "handyman" route. Verifiable experience. Many years.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:09 PM   #4
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What you're describing might not cause any immediate issues, however it just doesn't make sense to me and (likely) is a violation in just about any municipality. I'd much sooner run NMWU/UF underground, simply sleeving the cable where mechanical-protection is required. Better yet, if that conduit spans the entire run, use single-conductors.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:13 PM   #5
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Please fill out your profile. Your post sounds like you're a handyman/trunkslammer. Tnx



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Yup:

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I have a pretty broad question. I would like to obtain my C-10 License. My experience consists of over thirty years in residential, commercial and industrial wiring. The problem is I have been in education for the past twenty years. I still do alot of residential work, and have taught several classes in the basics of residential wiring. Does anybody have a thought on how I would go about earning this license. I have a 2017 copy of the NEC and am quite familiar with it. All work I do is per code and I cover everything including 220 work and c.b. replacements. Being a math teacher the math, formulas, and equations are fairly easy. I would just like to get the license. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks - Larry
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:13 PM   #6
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:14 PM   #7
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Yup:
This should be a pretty easy job for him then, right? If he can do "c.b. replacement and 220 work," then throwing a little romex in an underground run of pipe is hands-tied-behind-your-back work
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:18 PM   #8
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Hi Hacky...I guess it was my turn to put out the trolls & pull up the drawbridge.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:19 PM   #9
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You know, if you're a handyman, why not just run a 16/3 extension cord out to the shed? You know, the kind with two male-ends?

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Old 05-14-2020, 05:20 PM   #10
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You know, if you're a handyman, why not just run a 16/3 extension cord out to the shed? You know, the end with two male-ends?
He didn't worry about vd before, so, why now?
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:21 PM   #11
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He didn't worry about vd before, so, why now?
I don't know about you guys, but I'm ALWAYS worried about VD...you never know what you'll catch
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:27 PM   #12
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Yep. That's what I told the client. I think 2.0 is a bit much. He only wants a couple of outlets for his "man-cave". Also, I have seen many jobs where romex was used in pvc used just for a couple of lighting circuits.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:29 PM   #13
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Yep. That's what I told the client. I think 2.0 is a bit much. He only wants a couple of outlets for his "man-cave". Also, I have seen many jobs where romex was used in pvc used just for a couple of lighting circuits.
You’re not supposed to be doing electrical work for clients.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:29 PM   #14
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You know, if you're a handyman, why not just run a 16/3 extension cord out to the shed? You know, the kind with two male-ends?
Oh yeah...they call those suicide cords.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:32 PM   #15
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Yep. That's what I told the client. I think 2.0 is a bit much. He only wants a couple of outlets for his "man-cave". Also, I have seen many jobs where romex was used in pvc used just for a couple of lighting circuits.
You mean like USB 2.0 or Firewire or maybe a thunderbolt connection? This isn't a tech site.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:37 PM   #16
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Yep. That's what I told the client. I think 2.0 is a bit much. He only wants a couple of outlets for his "man-cave". Also, I have seen many jobs where romex was used in pvc used just for a couple of lighting circuits.
Just cause you see it, doesn't mean it's right. There a whole lot of chop-shop, hack job crap out there in service and a whole lot of it has been installed by trunk-slamming handymen. This concept is no different.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:39 PM   #17
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Oh yeah...they call those suicide cords.
A.K.A. a "gay widowmaker" around here. Vivid but accurate description right there.
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Old 05-14-2020, 06:31 PM   #18
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Old 05-14-2020, 07:04 PM   #19
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Since the structure is a tool shed not a man-cave that only needs a couple outlets and lights it doesn't require a 90a panel. Voltage drop is negligible. So, my question is, if I run the wire in pvc, whether it's 3/4 inch or 1 inch or 2 inch the only question here is why can't I use romex instead of UF if it is going to be run in pvc anyways? I know the clients needs and I can't see running 2 awg that distance.
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Old 05-14-2020, 07:11 PM   #20
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Since the structure is a tool shed not a man-cave that only needs a couple outlets and lights it doesn't require a 90a panel. Voltage drop is negligible. So, my question is, if I run the wire in pvc, whether it's 3/4 inch or 1 inch or 2 inch the only question here is why can't I use romex instead of UF if it is going to be run in pvc anyways? I know the clients needs and I can't see running 2 awg that distance.
What does your code book say?
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