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Old 04-24-2003, 03:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: Fresno, CA
Installing a New Electrical Outlet

I have a lot of electrical equipment in my office running off of just one outlet. I had to run an extension cord from our guest room so that I could power more items in my office. This is getting out of hand, so I'd like to add two to four more outlets in my office.

The existing outlet is just an electrical box screwed to the wall with the conduit coming out of the bottom and going under the house to the breaker box. I was thinking I could do the same thing for the new outlets I want to put in.

How difficult would it be to add two more breakers to our breaker box and run two outlets off of each of those breakers? Can anyone give me any advice for this, or is this the sort of thing I should really have a professional do?
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Old 04-24-2003, 03:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Location: USA
I was able to nearly complete the installation of a new electric receptacle in my basement, opposite the circut breaker box. The part that tripped me up was actually pretty simple. I bought the wrong kind of circuit breaker. If you can get the right stuff, it is not rocket science........in the basement.

Big but.....if you are running electrical wires up into your walls, I would caution you to consider the possible drawbacks. You could get it wrong and do some damage and if your insurance company finds out you did it yourself, you probably would not be entitled to payment.

So, if you are confident and reasonably smart (I am guessing yes to both), you surely can do it. The question should really be whether or not you are comfortable with the risk.

Good luck!
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Old 04-24-2003, 03:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Location: Fresno, CA
Well, the house is a rental, and the lanlord, who is a handyman himself, would probably give me a hand. I just have to ask him for the help. Thanks HamiC.
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Old 04-24-2003, 03:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: P.R. Mass.
Get someone to watch over your shoulder while you do it. It is not rocket science, but if you are not 100% confident in what you are doing and your ability, stop and hire a pro. Something about the busses when installing a new breaker still scares me. Have a healthy respect for what 120 or 240 can do to you.
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Old 04-24-2003, 07:37 PM   #5 (permalink)
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As long as the breaker isn't being overused (trips constantly), just run lines off the existing plugs and splice lines off that. You'll have to cut into the drywall and do some drilling to get the outlets around the room, but it is pretty easy. Could probably get it done start to finish in around 4-6 hours over two days.
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Old 04-25-2003, 08:18 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree with gar1976 for the most part. Splicing the line will be much easier if you aren't tripping the breaker all the time. It sounds like your current outlet is not recessed into the wall but mounted on the wall. You could run conduit from this box to another outlet box attached to the wall. Most outlest are made so you can run additional outlets. For example if the outlet has 4 screws 2 will be used for the incoming power and the other 2 can be used to jump power to another outlet.

Very important when working with electricity....if you don't know what you are doing, have someone help you who does.
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Old 04-25-2003, 12:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If the breaker in the room is the only one on the circuit you could put more receptacles on it. If not you might want to put an entirely new circuit in the room. If youa re going to use the existing circuit splice off the existing circuit with pigtails in the electrical box. If you are going to surface run the additional wiresThey will need to be in conduit or "bx" for mechanical protection. at each entry/exit from an electrical box you will need an approriate clamp for the type of box and conduit you choose. If you are running the cables concealed it would probably be easiest to put a drop out of each box to the underside of the house. then you would have no drywall cutting to do. Go to homedepot or someplace liek that and tell the electrical guy what you want to do. They should set you up with all the connectors/clamps/boxes/marrets/wire etc. that you will need. Pay attention to how much load you are putting on any one circuit. A 15 amp circuit can only be loaded to 80% or about 1440watts. It will take more before tripping but that is all the code will allow us to design to. You can get the loads of almost all electrical devices from the back somewhere. For example my monitor uses 2.0A at 120V that is 240W. My computer runs 1A or 120watts. any desk lighting load can be calculated using the lamp wattage. Add up all your loads to determine if you need anothe circuit.
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Old 04-25-2003, 12:38 PM   #8 (permalink)
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One more thing. In Canada you can get a book called "the Electrical Code Simplified" for about $9. It is full of diagrams and sketches and is well worth the money. There is probably something like it a homodepot.
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Old 04-25-2003, 12:43 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Last edited by boatguy234; 11-09-2009 at 08:51 AM..
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Old 04-25-2003, 05:27 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Location: The Woodlands, TX
ummm well one thing im gonna say... that no one else has....

i think its prolly pretty important

MAKE SURE YOU TURN OFF THE ELECTRICITY BEFORE YOU WORK WITH THE LINES!!!!!
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Old 04-26-2003, 02:03 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Location: Perth
Bryanzera, Im an electrician! Too bad Im a tad too far away to do the job for you! It's relatively simple to install a powerpoint, an you shouldn't have to install a new breaker. Contact me, I can give you all the low down, plus the laws and regulations in your area.
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Old 05-01-2003, 05:34 PM   #12 (permalink)
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*ZZZAAAAPPPP*

Hey, you guys smell something burning in here? Anyone seen JStrider?
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Old 05-02-2003, 01:42 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Location: Perth
Hey, don't joke about that! I did that yesterday, and it bloody hurts!
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