View Full Version : Home Improvement Question

George Bokros
12-11-2012, 9:14 AM
Is it acceptable top run 110 volt for power in a stud bay that is being used for a cold air return? My son needs a grounded outlet so his surge suppressor will function properly. He has a sub panel in the basement we can put a circuit in. The basement steps are on one side of the basement center wall and on the other side is some duct work which we many have to remove for access but it may (I haven't looked at the situation yet).

This may a challenging situation.



Brad Sperr
12-11-2012, 1:35 PM
I'm not an electrician, but it seems like the rules on this changed in the 2011 NEC. Under the current code, at 300.22, it only allows MC cable in an environmental air duct "If necessary for direct action upon, or sensing of, the contained air." Under the 2008 NEC, I think it allowed you to run cable through the duct for any purpose, as long as it was MC, or in EMT, IMC, or rigid conduit. I think it was common practice at one time to run NM cable through a stud bay used as a cold air return as long as it ran perpendicular to the stud bay, but I think that was based on some confusion in the NEC that has been removed from the latest code cycle. You should be able to run that new circuit and avoid that stud bay entirely, although it may not be the most direct run.

Jim Koepke
12-11-2012, 2:55 PM
When a similar problem faced me a ground rod was put in outside the wall with the outlet and run to the one outlet.

Not a "code" solution, but it fixed the immediate problem.