Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Question about electric in finished basement

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Question about electric in finished basement

    I'm in the process of finishing my basement, and have nearly all the studs up. I'm at the stage where I need to start the electrical, and have a couple questions.

    Lighting - 1
    The side I am finishing has 3 standard basement ceiling light fixtures, the kind with the round white base and a single bulb. These are controlled by a simple 2-way switch. One plan is to have this circuit continue to light this side, but expand to 4 can lights and replace with switch with a dimmer. Simple.

    But I'd 3-way dimmer the easy way if possible! Short of wiring it for 3-way switches, is there such a thing as a switch setup where you can have 1 real and 1 "virtual" switch?

    In other words, there would be a primary switch that uses logic controls (think rocker paddle) as opposed to a physical rheostat, and a second switch across the room would act as a remote. So the second switch would look just like the first, but simply send signals to control the first.

    Lighting - 2
    Can I split the current lighting circuit into 2 branches? It is a 15A circuit. The goal is to do what I describe above with one branch, and then add another dimmer set to control low wattage accent lighting inside soffits and along a couple edges to illuminate the walls.

    The first branch would carry 4 60W spots in cans, and the second branch would carry up to 6 40W mini spots or eyeballs, maybe 3". The main circuit feeds the other side of the basement (unfinished) which has 4 CFL's pulling I believe 13W and they are rarely on.

    Smoke Detector
    The "code" requires a smoke detector that is powered by house power and also have battery backup. Should this be on a dedicated 15A circuit, or can it branch off the unswitched feed from a lighting circuit? My intuition says using an outlet circuit would be a poor choice, since they are GFCI down there, and a trip might render it useless.

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by JoePolvino; 12-01-2010, 11:49 AM.

  • #2
    Re: Question about electric in finished basement

    I have seen some wireless units that can be used to "add" switches with out hard wiring,
    But have never used or have any reviews on there actual function and or reliability, or battery life.
    this is one company that sells this type of items,
    (NOTE: have not dealt with them and am not endorsing them in any way for information use only).

    http://www.x10.com/promotions/x10_cat_new.html#aut
    Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
    attributed to Samuel Johnson
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Question about electric in finished basement

      Originally posted by JoePolvino View Post
      I'm in the process of finishing my basement, and have nearly all the studs up. I'm at the stage where I need to start the electrical, and have a couple questions.

      Lighting - 1
      The side I am finishing has 3 standard basement ceiling light fixtures, the kind with the round white base and a single bulb. These are controlled by a simple 2-way switch. One plan is to have this circuit continue to light this side, but expand to 4 can lights and replace with switch with a dimmer. Simple.

      But I'd 3-way dimmer the easy way if possible! Short of wiring it for 3-way switches, is there such a thing as a switch setup where you can have 1 real and 1 "virtual" switch?

      In other words, there would be a primary switch that uses logic controls (think rocker paddle) as opposed to a physical rheostat, and a second switch across the room would act as a remote. So the second switch would look just like the first, but simply send signals to control the first.

      Lighting - 2
      Can I split the current lighting circuit into 2 branches? It is a 15A circuit. The goal is to do what I describe above with one branch, and then add another dimmer set to control low wattage accent lighting inside soffits and along a couple edges to illuminate the walls.

      The first branch would carry 4 60W spots in cans, and the second branch would carry up to 6 40W mini spots or eyeballs, maybe 3". The main circuit feeds the other side of the basement (unfinished) which has 4 CFL's pulling I believe 13W and they are rarely on.

      Smoke Detector
      The "code" requires a smoke detector that is powered by house power and also have battery backup. Should this be on a dedicated 15A circuit, or can it branch off the unswitched feed from a lighting circuit? My intuition says using an outlet circuit would be a poor choice, since they are GFCI down there, and a trip might render it useless.

      Thanks in advance!
      I have seen the wireless 3 ways in action...i recommend wiring a true 3 way switch. the smoke detector , NEC code requires that smoke detectors be run with a lighting circuit, in a new home. Now it should also be interconnected with the rest of the house if it has them. and i would see no issue with your 2nd lighting question. 4 60w= 240w 6 40w=260w total 500w= 4.5454 amps roughly.
      Last edited by BDover; 12-05-2010, 05:26 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Question about electric in finished basement

        What I ended up doing here is this: Took the incoming 15A line and broke it into 3 separate branches within a junction box mounted to a floor joist. Branch #1 feeds a temporary 2-way switch for the finished side of the basement. Branch #2 feeds a 3-way for the stairs. Branch #3 feeds a 3-way for the unfinished side of the basement.

        I've pretty much given up on converting the 2-way to a 3-way. That 2-way will be replaced by a simple dimmer to control 4 60W cans. I might eventually put in a controller that works with a remote so we can adjust light levels from the couch.

        I still have to pigtail in another line to the source for the smoke detector.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Question about electric in finished basement

          Smoke alarms need NOT be their own circuit from the panel?
          Is that so that if the smoke alarm circuit-breaker trips, it willikely not be noticed?
          But if part of a lighting circuit, it more likely will be noticed?

          If you can, interconnect the smoke alarms.
          Later that can be used to connect smoke detectors to a monitored system if you or next owner wishes.

          Your wireless remote makes sense. No need to run three or four-way circuit wiring.
          Last edited by Robert Gift; 01-05-2011, 04:30 PM.
          I'd take an educated guess - but I'm unqualified.
          It ain't just soot, it's paydirt.
          "I swear, wherever Gift goes, argument follows." -Youtube comment

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Question about electric in finished basement

            Originally posted by Robert Gift View Post
            Smoke alarms need NOT be their own circuit from the panel?
            Is that so that if the smoke alarm circuit-breaker trips, it willikely not be noticed?
            But if part of a lighting circuit, it more likely will be noticed?
            Yes, I think that is the point. I wish the "code" books had some sort of reasoning behind why each clause exists.

            Comment

            Working...
            X