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  1. #1
    Loren Young's Avatar
    Loren Young Guest

    Lightbulb CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    I am wanting to build a kitchen island in my house to eat at and prep food. My friend who is a cabinet maker said I may be required to run a power outlet to it. I do not need power as the island will not be used for appliances portable or installed. Can anyone answer weather it is required for me to run power? Thanks

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  2. #2
    Guy W Opie's Avatar
    Guy W Opie Guest

    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    The NEC requires an outlet for the island and if the island top is divided by a cooktop, sink etc than an outlet is required on both ends.


  3. #3
    Loren Young's Avatar
    Loren Young Guest

    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    Thanks Guy, not the answer I wanted to here but I appreciate it. I am from the midwest where all the houses have basement and running electric would be much easier. My house here in CA is built on a slab and has a tile floor so now I have pull the tile and cut a channel in the slab and run conduit which will be much more labor intensive. I appreciate the advice even though I think it is stupid. I see no logic in it if I don't need power.


  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    If the countertop space is small enough in area and dimmensions it may not require one. If the "island" is not permanently attached (itself or via connections to building systems, such as plumbing, etc.) it may not require one. If the island is freely mobile, such as on casters, feet, and can be moved, and is without attachment or interconnection to systems, it may not require one.

    Without a floor plan, some sort of dimmensions regarding countertop area, etc. Unknown if overhead cabinets, etc. it is difficult to devine a precise response. I realize you mentioned wanting to eat at the island and dually use for a food preparation surface - but this doesn't necessarily imply for example, an area with dimensions equal to or greater than four square feet, or either dimmension equal to or greater than 24" or 12", or the lack of an above the island countertop surface equal to or less than 20"

    In other words, there can be more than one way to "skin that cat". Free standing "furniture" can be created and simply "set" in place. You might have more than one side by side latched together. Other "features" such as pull-out cutting boards, hinged leafs, etc. might be utilized.

    Since you indicate no desire to have any fixtures, appliances, etc. in place, and presumed no plumbing fixtures either, seems a simple matter to create kitchen "furniture" to meet your needs, even if comprised of matching cabinetry components upon a mobile frame with feet, etc. As long as its not "too heavy" or "too large" so as to prevent it from being moved when intended.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 04-11-2011 at 09:31 AM.

  5. #5
    Guy W Opie's Avatar
    Guy W Opie Guest

    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    Hg Watson Sr. has brought uo a valid point. If the island is movabale such as being on locking caster wheels than the island would not need a outlet, since it would be free standing furniture. That is the way I would go about it.


  6. #6
    Loren Young's Avatar
    Loren Young Guest

    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    Thank you both for your input and I will probably go with a portable island via casters and just run trim around the base to cover them. I wrote an electric company too and they said it is required on a stationary surface due to the fact you could plug something in on the counter across from the island and set the item on the island then it becomes a trip hazard. I am not quite sure how the island being installed vs. portable makes any difference in that situation as I can do the same thing on a portable island or my table but oh well. The other thing I was wondering is about was counter tops. My cabinet maker friend also told me about making a portable Island but said most granite or other stone companies will not install a top on a portable surface due to the weight. If I were to install it myself it also might make the island too heavy to be considered portable.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    The safety issue is the same but the building codes have no jurisdiction over furniture and a movable counter would be classified as furniture, not part of the structure.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Default Re: CA Electric Code for Kitchen Island

    Are you planning on having part of the top overhang, so as to form a place to sit and eat? If so, please keep in mind that children like to hang off of things. Small children have been seriously injured by hanging on an island counter top where the island was not secured to the floor. They can be a tip hazard.


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