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Overloaded Circuit (No way to run wires for a new circuit)

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  • Overloaded Circuit (No way to run wires for a new circuit)

    My house is about 50 years old, the problem is on the forth floor where we have a space heater, a few computers, 2 tv's, a tredmill, and more. so as you can imagine all that on one 15amp circuit is a problem. Right now there is an extention cord running from another circuit downstairs but even that circuit is a bit overloaded. I want to run 2 circuits up, one for more outlets and one for a 240volt heater, there is room in the 200amp panel but I can't find a way to hide the wires all the way from the bottom. There is an attic than runs along one side of the 4th floor and one floor below and then below that a small crawl space, once I get the wires down to the crawl space the rest is easy. Any ideas for places to hide wires?

  • #2
    This is an idea and one where you really want to hire a good electrician to help. How about running galv pipe through the basement wall and up the outside wall of the house and then into the attic. Somewhere either in the attic or 4th floor install a sub panel and run circuits from it. Is the attic at all finished or is it crude? The pipe can be painted first with the correct primper and then to match the house. It can be run in places where it doesn't show that much. Inside it you would pull 4 wires. 2 for hot (black and red) 1 for neutral (white) and a green for ground. For what this will take, I would go with #6 THHN wires and then add a 50 Amp 2 pole breaker in the main panel. Where the sub panel is, go for no less than 8 spaces. This can be either surface or flush mounted depending on the location of it. A good electrician may well find a way to run it through an inside wall so as not to need anything outside. They have their "tricks of the trade" that most of us would never think of. In addition you really want a licensed electrician to do the work for this project.


    • #3
      It may be somewhat circuitous, but, assuming the main panel is in the basement, try to find where the main soil stack rises through the house. A little patience and a few lenghs of "green sticks" might enable you to run the wires wherever vertical plumbing lines go. Green sticks are flexible fiberglass rods about 4' long that can be screwed end to end and are used to "snake" a path from floor to floor inside walls. Once snaked from points of source and use of power, wire is attached to the source end and pulled through to the point where it is needed. When done, try to leave a drag line behind for future projects.
      there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.


      • #4
        The attic is not finished


        • #5
          I just thought you should know that this is a split level house


          • #6
            running wires

            I have snaked many wires through old houses, like other said look by the soil stack or by the chiminey. I prefer to use beaded chain, I bought a spool of it years ago, you'll have to find a lamp supply or good old fashion hardware store. Once dropped through a hole it seeks its way down. If you get blocked on a floor try to determine how far you got by pulling back and measuring length. Most time removing a section of baseboard and cutting a hole behind it at floor level can get you through the next floor. This chain is only used to get through, you then pull a strong string (masons line) or fish tape. Use those to pull your wires. Your other option is to keep over loading everything like you are doing, pay your insurance and make sure the new house has proper wiring.



            • #7

              Hi ,As the man said run a conduit on outside to attic area, then to a sub panal,as many amps as u want ......Tom