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  1. #1
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    Default Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    This outlet is installed on the floor of the kitchen sink cabinet; services the garbage disposer.
    I can't seem to find a code that fit this specific situation.
    I know that if the outlet was installed on the wall of the cabinet it would be ok. Because is it an dedicated appliance outlet (for disposer or dishwasher), it does not serve the kitchen counter and therefore does not have to be on a GFCI protected circuit. If the outlet was on the top of a kitchen counter, it would have to be protected.

    But because this outlet is lying face up under the kitchen sink, that would seem to increase the risk of exposure to water - therefore GFCI? Or a cover?. Or have it relocated? Common sense makes me want to recommend relocation to the wall of the cabinet; do I have any codes that would require it?IMG_0804-s.jpg

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    The upcoming 2014 NEC would require GFI protection, but except for the cables that appear to be unsecured there does not appear to be an NEC issue.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    I have one installed face up in the bottom of my kitchen cabinet, except that the receptacle is a GFCI receptacle and the cover is a bubble type cover (neither is required at this time, but neither is prohibited either, and it increases the level of safety for it).

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Seems I recall a requirement for a metal cover if face up.
    Is that right?

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Similar question asked here. Several code references listed along with debate on if they apply, etc.

    http://www.inspectionnews.net/home_i...-surfaces.html

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

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    Seems I recall a requirement for a metal cover if face up.
    Is that right?
    Not that I am aware of.

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

  7. #7
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    I would have no problem identifying this condition as needing improvement. I have done so many times in new construction, because this is common under kitchen cabinets and under master whirlpool tubs. In my wording I am careful to inform the client this is an opinion.


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    I do not see a problem with it and I would not even comment on it.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  9. #9

    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    While acceptable at time of install, current standards recommend installation of GFCI outlet in this location. For safety purposes, I would recommend upgrading receptacle to a GFCI when possible.

    I would not have a problem making that statement in this circumstance.

    I also would recommend they replace the cover to that outlet. Way to easy for someone to cut themselves on that cover plate that sticks out. Some folks may not think that is a big deal, but catch the corner of that plate between your fingers and you may not have the same opinion next time.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles Wilson View Post
    While acceptable at time of install, current standards recommend installation of GFCI outlet in this location. For safety purposes, I would recommend upgrading receptacle to a GFCI when possible.
    What current safety standard?

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

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Might be talking about the 2014 code change.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Might be talking about the 2014 code change.
    I thought about that too, then I thought about how few places are using the new 2014 NEC already ... but it could be that was what he meant.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  13. #13

    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Jerry, you are correct. I should not say current standards recommend. Until the new codes are adopted, it is just my opinion. I stand corrected.


  14. #14

    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    I would tell them it should definitely be replaced with a GFCI outlet and if they wanted to go the extra mile for safety they could relocated the outlet to the wall instead of the floor. Both are relatively cheap and easy upgrades to make.


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle Montgomery View Post
    I would tell them it should definitely be replaced with a GFCI outlet and if they wanted to go the extra mile for safety they could relocated the outlet to the wall instead of the floor. Both are relatively cheap and easy upgrades to make.

    A GFCI under the kitchen sink mounted on the back wall - HMMMMMMMMM - now lets think about the requirement for the GFCI to be readily accessible ....................

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Might be talking about the 2014 code change.
    understand the guy who wrote the proposal to get that into the 2014 is a damn nice guy............................


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by jack davenport View Post
    A GFCI under the kitchen sink mounted on the back wall - HMMMMMMMMM - now lets think about the requirement for the GFCI to be readily accessible ....................

    HMMMMMMMMM .................. Why would that not be readily accessible?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  17. #17
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    HMMMMMMMMM .................. Why would that not be readily accessible?

    I din't say it was or wasn't .

    I was throwing it out there as I have heard many debates from both sides, as to if it would or would not be readily accessible. The side that claims it is NOT uses the argument of having to empty everything under the sink and having to maneuver into the cabinet to gain access to a GFCI on the back wall.
    The side that says it IS claims that the above described is not what the NEC intended as readily accessible.

    Now lets throw out there the debate of : Is UNDER the sink in the cabinet covered in the within 6' of a sink rule ?


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by jack davenport View Post
    The side that says it IS claims that the above described is not what the NEC intended as readily accessible.
    That side is not saying what the NEC intended, that side is saying what the NEC *STATES* in the NEC definition of "Accessible, Readily (Readily Accessible).
    - Accessible, Readily (Readily Accessible). Capable of being reached quickly for operation, renewal, or inspections without requiring those to whom ready access is requisite to climb over or remove obstacles or to resort to portable ladders, and so forth.

    Now lets throw out there the debate of : Is UNDER the sink in the cabinet covered in the within 6' of a sink rule ?
    There is no 6' of the sink rule for the kitchen, has not been since 1987 as I recall (I know, *I* should look at the GFCI page *I* put together, but all y'all have a copy of it anyway ), and even then the rule was not a blanket within 6' of the kitchen sink rule, it was limited to receptacles which served the countertop and receptacles UNDER the sink were never intended to serve the countertop.

    Since 1987 (as I recall) the within 6' of the kitchen sink and which serve countertop spaces was replaced with 'all' receptacles which serve the countertop spaces.

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

  19. #19
    John Slaughter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry Beck View Post
    This outlet is installed on the floor of the kitchen sink cabinet; services the garbage disposer.
    I can't seem to find a code that fit this specific situation.
    I know that if the outlet was installed on the wall of the cabinet it would be ok. Because is it an dedicated appliance outlet (for disposer or dishwasher), it does not serve the kitchen counter and therefore does not have to be on a GFCI protected circuit. If the outlet was on the top of a kitchen counter, it would have to be protected.

    But because this outlet is lying face up under the kitchen sink, that would seem to increase the risk of exposure to water - therefore GFCI? Or a cover?. Or have it relocated? Common sense makes me want to recommend relocation to the wall of the cabinet; do I have any codes that would require it?IMG_0804-s.jpg
    What about the exposed romex type wiring feeding the electrical box? This romex type wiring as installed is not protected from damage when exposed in the cabinet as it is. All romex type wiring is to be protected from damage by an approved enclosure. For this application generally in my area we see metal clad (M/C) wiring used.


  20. #20
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post


    There is no 6' of the sink rule for the kitchen, has not been since 1987 as I recall (I know, *I* should look at the GFCI page *I* put together, but all y'all have a copy of it anyway ), and even then the rule was not a blanket within 6' of the kitchen sink rule, it was limited to receptacles which served the countertop and receptacles UNDER the sink were never intended to serve the countertop.

    Since 1987 (as I recall) the within 6' of the kitchen sink and which serve countertop spaces was replaced with 'all' receptacles which serve the countertop spaces.

    You may want to look closely at the 2014 NEC. The wording has changed.

    in section 210.8 (7)
    the wording in the 2011 stated - Sinks - Located in areas other than kitchens........
    The wording in the 2014 states - Sinks - where receptacles are installed within 6' of the outside edge

    The code created a loop hole where one could legally install a receptacle within 6' of a kitchen sink and not gfci protect it. ( If it was not installed to serve the counter top).
    There was a proposal that was submitted and approved that closed that loop hole.

    Time to redo your GFCI chart

    I have had conversations with Jeff Sargent , the managing editor of the NEC, and his train of thought is that even under the sink falls within the 6' from a sink . I am not so sure and think it may be a stretch.

    Last edited by jack davenport; 01-22-2014 at 11:33 AM.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Perhaps they need to define it as "as measured by the cord length".

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by jack davenport View Post
    Time to redo your GFCI chart
    Nope, not time to redo my chart, but ... ... I will be doing an update to include a new line for the 2014 NEC requirements when I get a chance - I do updates to it for each new code edition.

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

  23. #23
    Lamar Chandler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    I have not looked this up in the NEC , we never mount any recepts face up without a cover ! (floor type covers when not plugged in)


  24. #24
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Lamar Chandler View Post
    I have not looked this up in the NEC , we never mount any recepts face up without a cover ! (floor type covers when not plugged in)
    The receptacle in the photo has a cover, a 'cover plate' or 'face plate', a bubble-type cover is not required, a floor receptacle-type cover is not required either.

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

  25. #25
    Lamar Chandler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    NEC art 460 no recepts. To be mounted face up in counter tops and similar surfaces.
    ( bad practice because dust can accumulate in the slots over time if not covered or in use !)


  26. #26
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    Default Re: Outlet on floor of kitchen cabinet

    Quote Originally Posted by Lamar Chandler View Post
    NEC art 460 no recepts. To be mounted face up in counter tops and similar surfaces.
    ( bad practice because dust can accumulate in the slots over time if not covered or in use !)
    "(E) Receptacles in Countertops and Similar Work Surfaces in Dwelling Units. Receptacles shall not be installed in a face-up position in countertops or similar work surfaces."

    That is not a "countertops or similar WORK surfaces". Not even close.

    That receptacle is also not "in" the surface, it is "on" the surface. You may think that is a 'minor point' but it addresses the reason receptacles are not allowed "in" countertops and similar work surfaces.

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

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