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Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

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  • Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

    Hey all,

    I am going to add a 220v heater to the ceiling of my garage and will need to add a 220v circuit to my main panel (also located in the garage) to accommodate this.

    I have basic electrical experience. I have installed new bathroom vent fans, new outlets, roughing in houses, etc. I have never installed a circuit directly into a main panel before though. I usually left that to an electrician to complete. This being said, my father has done it several times in his building career and said it is quite simple and can be safe if done properly. He advised he would walk me through the process.

    The way I would like to install this is have a 220v outlet box mounted to the ceiling (visible), run a 220v line along the wall (directly where the ceiling/wall meet) until I get over to where the main panel is. Then I plan on running the line into the wall and into the panel. My thoughts are that this would prevent me from having to bore through the existing 2x4's and simplifying the install.

    My questions:

    What wire meets code to be mounted outside a wall? (I heard something about armor cable?)

    Is there a 220v outlet box that can be mounted without having to be hidden in a wall/ceiling?

    Should I do the entire process myself or have an electrician do the final connection after inspecting my work (which will all be visible in my noted configuration)?

    Does anyone have anything to add?

    Cheers,

    Adam

  • #2
    Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

    I am not a electrician but have done this several time. In fact I just added two 220 circuits in my home a few months ago. In all the cases I have done this work I have done it the way it would be done as if it was new construction. That is in the walls behind the Sheetrock. The last one was for a heat pump and I had to drill through over 30 studs in an external garage wall and remove the sheet rock to do this. If it was me I would open the wall and run the home run to the panel not forgetting to use nail plates. You should then be able to mount a j box to the ceiling joist and hard wire the heater. I really do not like exposed wire unless it is in conduit and even then I don't like the look.

    Also, you should be able to find an electrician that will do the final install after you do all of the grunt work. That is what I did for the heat pump. I did the grunt work, he came out and did the final connection and it was not much.
    Charles

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

      The "grunt work" is the hard/complicated/code intensive part. The "final hookup" is the easiest part.
      I have NO idea why folks are under the extreme misconception that the opposite is true.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

        Almost any cable is approved for exposed use. Thing is most must be protected from physical damage.

        Drilling a few, even many, 2x4's is FAR better than running it on the surface.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

          Originally posted by NW Diver View Post
          I am not a electrician but have done this several time. In fact I just added two 220 circuits in my home a few months ago. In all the cases I have done this work I have done it the way it would be done as if it was new construction. That is in the walls behind the Sheetrock. The last one was for a heat pump and I had to drill through over 30 studs in an external garage wall and remove the sheet rock to do this. If it was me I would open the wall and run the home run to the panel not forgetting to use nail plates. You should then be able to mount a j box to the ceiling joist and hard wire the heater. I really do not like exposed wire unless it is in conduit and even then I don't like the look.

          Also, you should be able to find an electrician that will do the final install after you do all of the grunt work. That is what I did for the heat pump. I did the grunt work, he came out and did the final connection and it was not much.
          Why not just pull a homeowners permit and do it all yourself? They(local building dept. AHJ) can spot things you may not think of... Did you size the conductors 125% for continuous load? Did you derate for bundling next to other cables? Did you compromize the structure by drilling into the wrong portion of the floor joists? Box fill ok/number of wires in box? (just to scratch the surface) A lot of stuff to know. They are usually very helpful. It would be a shame if the electrician had to rip it all out and start over. On a side note, if permits are not pulled and their was a problem (fire) your home owners insurance is worthless.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

            Originally posted by johncameron View Post
            On a side note, if permits are not pulled and their was a problem (fire) your home owners insurance is worthless.
            This last part is NOT true. It is an old contractor's tale perpetuated over the years by internet forums.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

              They may not always find out about your illeagal work, but most insurance companies are just looking for a reason to deny your claim. Don't believe me, Ask any lawyer to read the fine print of your contract and see what they say.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                Originally posted by johncameron View Post
                They may not always find out about your illeagal work, but most insurance companies are just looking for a reason to deny your claim. Don't believe me, Ask any lawyer to read the fine print of your contract and see what they say.
                I HAVE asked my insurance agent just for this reason. I was told FLAT OUT THIS WAS UNTRUE. The only time they have a legal base to deny a claim such as this is if it is found out that it was done intentionally to cause damage or harm. In that case your insurance is the least of your worries.

                I am not saying they will not drop you the minute the claim is closed, but they CANNOT deny you just because of shoddy/unpermitted work.

                I'll challenge you the same thing; don't believe me, ask YOUR lawyer or insurance agent.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                  In my case all required permits were pulled and signed off by the inspector before covering.
                  Charles

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                    Originally posted by Speedy Petey View Post
                    I HAVE asked my insurance agent just for this reason. I was told FLAT OUT THIS WAS UNTRUE. The only time they have a legal base to deny a claim such as this is if it is found out that it was done intentionally to cause damage or harm. In that case your insurance is the least of your worries.

                    I am not saying they will not drop you the minute the claim is closed, but they CANNOT deny you just because of shoddy/unpermitted work.

                    I'll challenge you the same thing; don't believe me, ask YOUR lawyer or insurance agent.
                    Your "agent" may have said so but I don't know If I would trust everything this guy said unless he has the ultimate say so for your check being cut. (I doubt it) This guy has no legal authority. Furthermore, Its not just that the work was done without a permit, its that the work was not done to the state and local laws. Even if your insurance paid the claim, the person that done the work is still liable for any future litigation.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                      Originally posted by johncameron View Post
                      Your "agent" may have said so but I don't know If I would trust everything this guy said unless he has the ultimate say so for your check being cut. (I doubt it) This guy has no legal authority. Furthermore, Its not just that the work was done without a permit, its that the work was not done to the state and local laws. Even if your insurance paid the claim, the person that done the work is still liable for any future litigation.
                      Fine, but this is a far cry from your original comment (which is often parroted by folks) I quoted.
                      Originally posted by johncameron View Post
                      On a side note, if permits are not pulled and their was a problem (fire) your home owners insurance is worthless.
                      I stand by my original reply to this.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                        Originally posted by speedy petey View Post
                        i have asked my insurance agent just for this reason. I was told flat out this was untrue. The only time they have a legal base to deny a claim such as this is if it is found out that it was done intentionally to cause damage or harm. In that case your insurance is the least of your worries.

                        I am not saying they will not drop you the minute the claim is closed, but they cannot deny you just because of shoddy/unpermitted work.

                        I'll challenge you the same thing; don't believe me, ask your lawyer or insurance agent.

                        i was married to a insurance claims lady for years, and this is a true statement,
                        they have to pay your claims, they then have the right to collect from anybody that did illegal work and or
                        cancel your policy
                        JERRYMAC
                        E-MAILJERRYMAC777@GMAIL.COM
                        CALIF. LIC. PLBG,HEAT,DRAINS,ELECTRIC,WATER HEATER, BOILER, POOL AND SPA HEATER
                        FIRE SPRINKLER CONTRACTOR,
                        SINCE JAN. 1989

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                          JerryMac you are correct. I am a Independent agent with over 30 years experience and know of no provisions in an insurance contract that would allow them to not pay on a claim like this. They do have the right to surrogate against any other parties that may be liable. And if there is a wacky insurance contract out there that would allow that and your agent said it was covered then you would have grounds to file a claim under his E & O. But I still believe that you should always pull permits if required even if you are allowed to do them yourself (such as here in Oregon).
                          Charles

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                            Originally posted by Speedy Petey View Post
                            Almost any cable is approved for exposed use. Thing is most must be protected from physical damage.

                            Drilling a few, even many, 2x4's is FAR better than running it on the surface.
                            Of course, this will weaken a 2x4 at the drill point. Do enough holes and the whole wall will be weaker. I say surface mount the wire and cover it with a narrow cover. Those should be available from several sources.

                            Howard Ferstler

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Adding 220v circuit to garage shop

                              Originally posted by Howard Ferstler View Post
                              Of course, this will weaken a 2x4 at the drill point. Do enough holes and the whole wall will be weaker. I say surface mount the wire and cover it with a narrow cover. Those should be available from several sources.

                              Howard Ferstler
                              The whole wall??? Weaker? From a few 3/4" holes? Like one hole in each stud?
                              I hardly think so. If that were the case then drilling would not be allowed by code.

                              Comment

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