Just came across a neat product at the local hardware store, but I wonder if they are up to code and safe to use. They are a wire nut that allows you to simply push the wires in, instead of twisting on a traditional wire nut.
They cost slightly more, and you have to keep a wider variety of connectors on hand since they vary by the number of wires that can be connected.
they accept 12-22 AWG solid and 12-22 AWG stranded wire, and are rated at 600 VAC. They come in a variety of sizes from 2 - 8 'ports', so they should be up to any job.
Has anybody ever used these, and are they code compliant in the United States? Is there any danger of the wires slipping out over time?
Found some standards information:
(Ideal Industries IN-SURE(TM) PUSH-IN CONNECTORS)
UL 486C, UL 467 GROUNDING
CSA C22.2 #188
UL 94V-2 FLAME RATING
US PATENT 7,507,106
US & FOREIGN PATENTS PENDING
I finally got my hands on some of these things, and I'll tell you what. If you can pull the wires out through normal means once they're locked in, you deserve some type of prize. I did find a way to pull the wires out, but I doubt they'll ever see enough movement while in use to allow the wires to slip out. If you spin the wires back and forth while you pull, they will eventually work their way out. Doing this chews the wire up pretty bad, leaving a bunch of nicks along the length of the wire.
They say not to reuse them, and I can see why. Removing the wire; even when using the "release", can leave a fairly deep gouge in the wire. If you ever have to remove them, you'll likely have to trim the wire back and restrip it. However, Even after torturing them (including taking them apart), they still held the wire when it was reinserted.
So as long as your wiring is not subjected to constant twisting and pulling, you should have no problems with wires pulling out of these things.
I think I finally found the relevant section in the code that would apply to these devices.
NEC 2008 110.14 (B)Splices.
Conductors shall be spliced or joined with splicing devices identiﬁed for the useor by brazing, welding, or soldering with a fusible metal or alloy. Soldered splices shall ﬁrst be spliced or joined so as to be mechanically and electrically secure without solder and then be soldered.
All splices and joints and the free ends of conductors shall be covered with an insulation equivalent to that of the conductors or with an insulating device identiﬁed for the purpose.Wire connectors or splicing means installed on conductors for direct burial shall be listed for such use.
I would say these devices fit both criteria. They are identified for the use, and they provide insulation equivalent to the conductors.