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Commercial repair garages
20-100 Scope (see Appendix B)
Rules 20-102 to 20-112 apply to commercial garages where vehicles powered by gasoline, propane, or other
flammable fuels are serviced or repaired.
20-102 Hazardous areas
(1) For each floor at or above grade, the entire area up to a level 50 mm above the floor shall be considered a
Class I, Zone 2 location except that adjacent areas shall not be classified as hazardous locations, provided
that they are
(a) elevated from a service and repair area by at least 50 mm; or
(b) separated from a service and repair area by tight-fitting barriers such as curbs, ramps, or partitions at
least 50 mm high.
(2) For each floor below grade, the entire area up to a level 50 mm above the bottom of outside doors or other
openings that are at, or above, grade level shall be considered a Class I, Zone 2 location except that, where
adequate ventilation is provided, the hazardous location shall extend up to a level of only 50 mm above
each such floor.
(3) Any pit or depression below floor level shall be considered a Class I, Zone 2 location that extends up to
50 mm above the floor level.


That's all we've got in the CEC

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I think the rationale is that in a commercial repair garage, gasoline vapors would be far more common than in a residential setting. A residential garage is considered a "parking" garage, not a repair garage.
 
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What difference does outlet height make, the outlet is not a source of ignition. What is plugged into it is the source of ignition. Like a space heater sitting on the floor. How many times in history has someone plugging in a object caused an explosion. More nanny inspector trying to save the world.
 

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Old Grumpy Bastard
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Up here in the frozen north I have never seen a gas water heater lifted off the floor unless it was above a T-bar ceiling. There is no minimum receptacle height around gas appliances either as far as I know.
It has nothing to do with receptacle height in relationship to water heaters.

A gas water heater in a garage needs to be 18" off the floor to the fire box in case gasoline fumes (heavier than air / and hang about 12" off the floor) are present to avoid ignition.
 

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It has nothing to do with receptacle height in relationship to water heaters.

A gas water heater in a garage needs to be 18" off the floor to the fire box in case gasoline fumes (heavier than air / and hang about 12" off the floor) are present to avoid ignition.
So you’re talking about car gas, not natural gas. That makes more sense.
 

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Old Grumpy Bastard
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So you’re talking about car gas, not natural gas. That makes more sense.
Yes gas fumes that could collect at floor level in a garage.
 

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Even if it's not a requirement for residential garages it should be.
maybe
however I'm not scared to sleep in a house wired to existing or recent codes, and don't feel that code needs more requirements
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Even if it's not a requirement for residential garages it should be. I think it's a valid concern. Consider something like a faulty plug in power supply that catches fire at 12" off the floor and gasses that might collect low on the floor.
As for water heaters that's the plumbers concern. I always hated having to hoist water heaters up on a platform when replacing them.
In the US it's 18 inches off of the ground, as per the NFPA and the National Fuel Gas Code.
That doesn't really make any sense. Because all the cords you plug in are just laying on the floor. In your scenario you would have to have 2 ''what if's '' simultaneously. What if the gas leaked and what if the outlet caught on fire at the same time. Well what if the cord had got cut, squashed under an appliance and caught fire. What if the three way laying on the floor caught fire . You see where I'm going with this...

That's why it is not a requirement. Now in commercial garages the height requirement is due to gasoline in the garage, not propane .
 

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That doesn't really make any sense. Because all the cords you plug in are just laying on the floor. In your scenario you would have to have 2 ''what if's '' simultaneously. What if the gas leaked and what if the outlet caught on fire at the same time. Well what if the cord had got cut, squashed under an appliance and caught fire. What if the three way laying on the floor caught fire . You see where I'm going with this...

That's why it is not a requirement. Now in commercial garages the height requirement is due to gasoline in the garage, not propane .
Did you fight it or just move it and head out to the next job?
 

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Seems like there must be a lot of garages that smell like gasoline.

Probably Ford garages.....
 

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What difference does outlet height make, the outlet is not a source of ignition. What is plugged into it is the source of ignition. Like a space heater sitting on the floor. How many times in history has someone plugging in a object caused an explosion. More nanny inspector trying to save the world.
Sparks are frequently used to light gas appliances. Sparks do sometimes occur at receptacles if you plug in an item that is turned on. Furthermore, sparks occur in receptacles that have loose wires. I've repaired a bunch of those. I believe this would make a receptacle a source of ignition. Just add gas or flammable fumes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Did you fight it or just move it and head out to the next job?
The GC said just fix it and charge him. He'll pass it to the customer. This is not our jurisdiction. But we are wiring a pavilion and pool in the area. . Incidentally these are the same AHJs that have no idea what a water bond is for a fiberglass pool. They also pass stapled wires side by side coming down a 2x4 stud. It seems that's typical in West Central Indiana.
 

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Look at the Table in Art.511---T. 511.3(C) shows receptacles 18" above floor in "Repair Garages" not garages for a dwelling
 

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I believe it to be in the NEC somewhere. I'm too lazy at the moment to look it up. Perhaps I am wrong, but every receptacle I see in a garage is at approximately 48 inches and I always install them at that height.
Not in NEC. Must be local building code. Not around here.
 

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I've had an inspector tell me that a residential garage needs to follow the commercial service garage rules. I didn't agree with that, but what can you do? I generally put garage outlets at least 24" AFF, and usually higher anyway. It certainly makes them more convenient to use and keeps them cleaner too.
 

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Even if it's not a code requirement I normally place them at counter top height for 2 reasons.
1. Some people install work benches in their garages and it nice to have the receptacles at that height so it is above the bench.
2. Sprinkler timers are usually at about that height and it just seems like a more logical height.
If a customer wanted it at 12" then they should have more say in where it's placed and the AHJ should keep their opinions to themselves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
It's up to the AHJ. Everything is up to the AHJ. Won't to get inspections passed? Better not buck the AHJ!
I understand that. But if they don't give a code reference then every body here says to ask for a code reference. That's all I did. Well I did tell him he was confused with a commercial garage that works on cars. ;)
 
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