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  1. #1
    dan orourke's Avatar
    dan orourke Guest

    Default Receptacle outlets on counters

    Last edited by dan orourke; 12-26-2007 at 09:43 AM.
    OREP Home Inspector E&O Insurance

  2. #2
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    Mar 2007
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    Hudson, WI
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    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    I'm surprised no one has chimed in on this one. See BOLD below

    Dwelling Unit Kitchen Counter Top Receptacle Outlet [210-52(c)]

    Kitchen Countertop Receptacles, Two Circuits Required. 125 volt, 15, or 20 ampere receptacles used for countertop surface appliances in a dwelling unit kitchen must be supplied by at least two 20 ampere circuits [210-11(c)(1) and 220-16(a)]. These small appliance branch circuits can supply receptacles in the kitchen as well as the pantry, breakfast room, dining room, or other similar areas where food is likely to be served.
    Kitchen and Dining Countertop Receptacle Location. In kitchens and dining rooms of dwelling units, receptacle outlets for counter spaces shall be installed according to (1) through (5) below. GFCI protection is required for all 125 volt, 15, and 20 ampere receptacles that supply kitchen countertop surfaces [210-8(a)(6)].
    (1) Wall Counter Space. A receptacle outlet must be installed for every kitchen and dining area counter wall space 12 inches or wider. Receptacles must be installed so that no point along the counter wall space is more than 2 feet (measured horizontally) from a receptacle outlet.
    (2) Island Countertop Space. This Section mandates only one receptacle outlet to be installed at each island countertop that has a long dimension of 24 inches or greater, and a short dimension of 12 inches or greater.
    (3) Peninsular Countertop Space. This Section mandates only one receptacle outlet to be installed at each peninsular countertop that has a long dimension of 24 inches or greater, and a short dimension of 12 inches or greater.
    (4) Separate Spaces. When breaks occur in countertop spaces (ranges, refrigerators, sinks, etc.), each countertop surface is considered a separate counter for determining receptacle placement.
    (5) Receptacle Outlet Location. Receptacle outlets shall be located above the countertop, but not more than 18 inches from the countertop surface. Receptacles shall not be installed in a face-up position in the work surfaces or countertops and they must not be located on the sides of cabinets.
    Receptacles that are rendered not readily accessible by appliances fastened in place, or appliances in dedicated spaces (dishwasher, microwave, etc.), are not considered meeting the receptacle outlets as required by this Section.
    Exception. The receptacle outlet required for the countertop can be installed below the countertop where necessary for the physically impaired or where there is no wall space above the island or peninsular counter. The receptacle must be located not more than 12 inches below the countertop surface and it cannot extends more than 6 inches measured horizontally from the counterís edge.


  3. #3
    Nolan Kienitz's Avatar
    Nolan Kienitz Guest

    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Larson View Post
    ... Dwelling Unit Kitchen Counter Top Receptacle Outlet [210-52(c)] ...
    Michael,

    Note your quote specifies "Kitchen Counter Top". Good follow up.

    But, look at Dan's post where it refers to a counter top in the bedroom. He did not indicate it was a "wet area". This being the case the surface mounted oulet is likely okay ... I will hasten to add that it is "not a good building practice" ... but still okay.

    Now, that being said, I know that Jerry P. will also offer a clarification.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    Quote Originally Posted by Nolan Kienitz View Post
    ......... Look at Dan's post where it refers to a counter top in the bedroom. He did not indicate it was a "wet area". This being the case the surface mounted oulet is likely okay ... I will hasten to add that it is "not a good building practice" ... but still okay.

    Now, that being said, I know that Jerry P. will also offer a clarification.
    Good point Nolan, I was thinking kitchen counter top. I would likely call it out anyway and note the possibility of spilled liquids from beverages or even an aquarium.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    Because Nolan said so.

    - 406.4 Receptacle Mounting.
    - - Receptacles shall be mounted in boxes or assemblies designed for the purpose, and such boxes or assemblies shall be securely fastened in place.
    - - (A) Boxes That Are Set Back. Receptacles mounted in boxes that are set back of the wall surface, as permitted in 370.20, shall be installed so that the mounting yoke or strap of the receptacle is held rigidly at the surface of the wall.
    - - (B) Boxes That Are Flush. Receptacles mounted in boxes that are flush with the wall surface or project therefrom shall be installed so that the mounting yoke or strap of the receptacle is held rigidly against the box or raised box cover.
    - - (C) Receptacles Mounted on Covers. Receptacles mounted to and supported by a cover shall be held rigidly against the cover by more than one screw or shall be a device assembly or box cover listed and identified for securing by a single screw.
    - - (D) Position of Receptacle Faces. After installation, receptacle faces shall be flush with or project from faceplates of insulating material and shall project a minimum of 0.4 mm (0.015 in.) from metal faceplates.
    - - (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.
    - - (F) Exposed Terminals. Receptacles shall be enclosed so that live wiring terminals are not exposed to contact.

    Michael was correct in the final answer, just used the wrong reference to get there.

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

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    Thanks for the code reference Jerry. Makes sense to me


  7. #7
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    Post Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    Some folk, whether it is code approved or not, just do not do things sensibly. This reminds me of a family conversation regarding 4.0 grade point averages and common sense. They don't always go hand-in-hand. The attached photo is from a "renovated" home built in the early 1900's. Note particularly the bathroom outlet. That is the only outlet in the bathroom.

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    Randall Aldering GHI BAOM MSM
    Housesmithe Inspection
    www.housesmithe.com

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Aldering View Post
    Some folk, whether it is code approved or not, just do not do things sensibly.
    Just to clarify ... that receptacle outlet is not code approved ...

    It needs to be within 3 feet of the lavatory. I'd have to look up the maximum height allowed.

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

  9. #9
    Nolan Kienitz's Avatar
    Nolan Kienitz Guest

    Default Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    [quote=Jerry Peck;25192]Because Nolan said so.

    - - (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. /quote]


    Thanks Jerry ... I know that you can always be counted on for the correct support. Even approaching 60-years ... I refuse to stop learning! As my Dad taught me, while growing up on the farm in Montana ... "Never, ever stop learning. The day you do you had best be six feet under and toes up!"

    That is my approach to each/every inspection as well. What can I learn from this inspection and how can I best provide that data to my client?

    Thanks again Jerry.


  10. #10
    Richard Hamann's Avatar
    Richard Hamann Guest

    Question Re: Receptacle outlets on counters

    While on this outlet thread, I have a question regarding a GFCI, wall mounted, near the kitchen sink, that started buzzing for no apparent reason. The buzzing lasted for about a minute and had no appliances plugged into it. I then tested the GFCI manually at it's test and reset button and it did not trip. I then checked it with a my plug-in tester and would not trip. It showed hot and wired correctly. Nothing had tripped on the circuit breaker panel either. Obviously the outlet is now defective and should be replaced. My question is, What has happened to the GFCI and the cause of the buzzing sound? Does this occur whenever a GFCI goes bad?

    Richard Hamann
    S & R Inspections LLC
    Brookfield, Wisconsin.


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