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  1. #1
    Jeff Remas's Avatar
    Jeff Remas Guest

    Default Box fill variable per inspector

    We seem to differ greatly on many posts, if not all posts which really says something for the inconsistency of our profession, one of the number one complaints from real estate agents.

    I am going to post a rather straight forward question based on a situation I had during an electrical code inspection.

    We should all come up with the same answers on this one. Let's see if we can all agree on one thing. This oughta be interesting.

    SITUATION:

    IRC 2006 & NEC 2005 apply.

    Basement, junction box. Metal 4" x 4" x 2-1/8" deep with cover and ground screw properly placed. No devices, internal clamps, plaster or extension rings on or in the box. Just wires and wire nuts except for the compression sleeve on the equipment grounds.

    There were eight (8) 12/2 NMB cables entering the box.

    Questions:

    1) Is the box properly sized?

    2) What is the box fill?

    3) What size box needed?


    Simple questions, simple answers, no need to post any code just to take up space, please just answer the questions.

    Similar Threads:
    Inspection Referral SOC

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Remas View Post
    one of the number one complaints from real estate agents.

    I am going to post a rather straight forward question based on a situation I had during an electrical code inspection.

    Jeff,

    I'm confused.

    You start off talking about home inspections (I believe as you referenced real estate agents) then end up asking a strictly code question, one which does not apply to home inspections????

    You lost me between your start and your finish ... just what is your intent?
    - A) Home inspections?
    - B) Code inspections?

    A simple A) or B) answer will suffice.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Come on Jerry! There are only three things with question marks at the end. Focus!!!

    "Get correct views of life, and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret. " Robert E. Lee

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Roland,

    I am focusing!!!!!!!!

    Jeff started out talking about home inspectors and ended up talking about doing electrical code inspections, then asked a strictly electrical code inspection question.

    Jeff is the one who needs to focus!

    Looks like you need to learn to read so you can read what I was saying.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  5. #5
    Jeff Remas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Please stick to the questions at hand.

    Last edited by Jeff Remas; 01-27-2009 at 08:05 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Remas View Post
    Apparently Jerry does not know how to figure that out so his defense mechanism is to question the questions rather than answer the questions.

    The questions are about box fill, not the difference between home inspections and code inspections. Start another thread if you want that. I am starting to think you have an er missing from the end of your name.
    Apparently Jeff is trying to impress us with some newly gained knowledge, trying to impress us lowly home inspectors that he now knows how to do box fill and that he actually does code inspections - he repeats that so often.

    That makes as much sense as you (Jeff) saying "Apparently Jerry does not know how to figure that out ... ".

    Jeff,

    Get a grip.

    YOU started off talking about home inspectors.

    YOU end up talking about doing electrical code inspections.

    YOU then asked a purely electrical code inspection question.

    So it is to be expected that someone will ask you to clarify what it is you actually want, and why.

    Someone did ask that.

    YOU did not answer that.

    You think I have an "er" missing at the end of my name? That was your statement. How old did you say you were? 15?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Yah know-Jerry your convoluted responses laced with perturbations confuse even those of us with the correct answer.

    "Get correct views of life, and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret. " Robert E. Lee

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Basement, junction box. Metal 4" x 4" x 2-1/8" deep with cover and ground screw properly placed. No devices, internal clamps, plaster or extension rings on or in the box. Just wires and wire nuts except for the compression sleeve on the equipment grounds.

    There were eight (8) 12/2 NMB cables entering the box.

    Questions:

    1) Is the box properly sized? No

    2) What is the box fill? The box as stated has 17 conductors...grounds count as one.

    3) What size box needed? 4 11/16 X 2 1/8 Square


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Jeff,

    I understood your points just fine. I way I took it real estate agents do not like the lack of consistancy between HI's. You then posed a question that should all yield the same answer from everyone.

    The question posed was 8 12-2 cables in a 4 sq. box 2 1/8"deep.

    8 x 2 = 16
    add 1 for all grounds
    total conductors = 17
    each #12 counts as 2.25 cu. in
    17 x 2.25 = 38.25 cu. in.
    From Table 314.16(A) the minimum volume is 30.3 cu. in.
    the max number of conductors for #12 is listed at 13.

    The box is overfilled or undersized depending on your point of view. An extension ring could be added for additional space. Conductor length may be an issue with the amount of free conductor left after the installation of the extension. A 1 1/2" deep extension would add approxiamately 21 cu. in.

    An 4 11/16 sq x 2 1/8" box would work also as capacity is listed at 18 #12's and 42.0 cu. in. minimum.

    There you go. Pretty straight forward, no attitude, and no extraneous fluff.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    How about that!
    Two with the same answer!


  11. #11
    Bob Spermo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Jeff,

    Here are my quickly ascertained answers:
    No
    38.25 cu in
    4 11/16 x 2 1/8 square

    I think questions like this are good as they get me back into the books. I really do not care what the motives for asking the question are.

    Now the other issue that has been brought up. I am licensed Texas Professional Real Estate Inspector and an ICC Residential Combination Inspector/TRCC Third Party Inspector. Either of those allows me to do new construction phase inspections in Texas. So when I do a phase inspection it is, if not a code inspection, very close as I cite code requirements alot. Now when I do a home inspection beginning on Feb 1 I have to call items such as no AFCIs in the entire house as "deficient". That sure sounds like a code issue. My point is, at least under the new Texas rules, the home inspection and code inspection are becoming very blurred and the clearly defined distinction is eroding.


  12. #12
    Jeff Remas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Jim, Wayne and Bob along with myself all came up with the same answer so there can be consistency when 4 out of 4 inspectors come to the same conclusion.

    Thanks to all of those for taking the time to respons appropriately rather than responsing as a detractor.

    Jeff


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    I agree with the answers.

    The solution may be to change the box to a 4 11/16 X 2 1/8 or add an extension box. If the original installation met the 6 inch rule(300.14) then there is a good chance it will meet the 3 inch exception with the extension ring.

    "Get correct views of life, and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret. " Robert E. Lee

  14. #14
    Jeff Remas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Wow, 5 for 5. Like a well oiled machine.

    That particular inspection was a code enforcement inspection. However, if I saw that during a regular home inspection I would have pointed it out too using the codes as a reference.

    In this case I simply wrote up the contractor for exceeding box fill and referenced the appropriate IRC section. It is up to the electrician to figure out how he will remedy the situation.


  15. #15
    MaMa Mount's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Mr. Remass, You amaze me. You come on this site regularly and ask some unusual question and then question everyone's else ability to answer it. If your just so damn smart, why the question? You always seem to find a way to compliment yourself at the end like today mentioning 5 for 5 and then mentioning you had already wrote it up as such. Your words, In this case I simply wrote up the contractor for exceeding box fill and referenced the appropriate IRC section. It is up to the electrician to figure out how he will remedy the situation.

    So what do want? A Cookie.

    You mentioned Jerry needed a -er on his name. I gave your name an extra "S" as it seems appropriate.

    M. Mount


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Quote Originally Posted by MaMa Mount View Post
    Mr. Remass, You amaze me. You come on this site regularly and ask some unusual question and then question everyone's else ability to answer it. If your just so damn smart, why the question? You always seem to find a way to compliment yourself at the end like today mentioning 5 for 5 and then mentioning you had already wrote it up as such. Your words, In this case I simply wrote up the contractor for exceeding box fill and referenced the appropriate IRC section. It is up to the electrician to figure out how he will remedy the situation.

    So what do want? A Cookie.

    You mentioned Jerry needed a -er on his name. I gave your name an extra "S" as it seems appropriate.

    M. Mount
    .
    .....
    .

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  17. #17
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Jeff--you snared yourself three critters. The rare but persistant "wannabe". Jerry, Billy and Ma Ma Wannabe.. A whole family

    "Get correct views of life, and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret. " Robert E. Lee

  18. #18
    RANDY NICHOLAS's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    it sounds like jeff and roland need some towels to clean the mess after they pleasured themselves.??


  19. #19
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Quote Originally Posted by Roland Miller View Post

    persistant "wannabe"...... Billy
    .
    ....

    .

    ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images
    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  20. #20
    Jeff Remas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Has anyone ever put a box fill issue in a home inspec. report?
    Not necessarily as a code violation but as a defect with a possible code reference.

    It is in the basements, crawlspaces and attics that we see the potential for this as these are the few areas that are accessible and will normally have juntion boxes.

    I am sure we have all seen electrical junction boxes with covers missing only because it was impossible to put them on due to the mound of wire coming out of the box.

    Whenever I see a large amount of conductors entering a junction box, it gets me to think.

    I admit that I have written this up before during a home inspection. I am not out there trying to find it and look at every single box, but there are those that really stand out and calls attention to itself.


  21. #21
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Remas View Post
    Has anyone ever put a box fill issue in a home inspec. report?
    Not necessarily as a code violation but as a defect with a possible code reference.
    Yes, with and without a code reference.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    I perform a home inspection, not a code enforcement inspection. I am familiar with current building code, and had read both the plumbing and electrical code.

    As a home inspector, it is not my task to determine joist size vs. span, junction box sizing, or other similar calculations. If I see a "too many" wires streaming from a junction box, I will probably call it out for further evaluation but I am not going to perform size calculations. That is beyond a typical home inspection. Usually there are additional indicators that sub standard work has been done.

    If a person was to measure a junction box, determine the number and size of wires in the box, and refer to a table in the code, we all should get the same answer. But... home inspectors are inspecting for safety and habitability, not code enforcement. 3 different home inspectors will find and report different things because we are not inspecting to code. Often times a code enforcement inspection can not be performed due to finish materials. Only those items visible can be inspected and the code violation may be obscured.

    Real Estate agents know that and that is why they pick and choose who they recommend to their clients. Depending on what the agent wants reported, they choose the inspector that meets their needs.

    "The Code is not a peak to reach but a foundation to build from."

  23. #23
    Fred Warner's Avatar
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    Default Re: Box fill variable per inspector

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Ramsey View Post
    .........................
    Depending on what the agent wants reported, they choose the inspector that meets their needs.
    "Inspector shopping" from a real estate agent. What a novel idea.
    "Inspector shopping" from a contractor. What a novel idea.



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