My new construction home has a 23.5' cathedral ceiling. The electricians roughed in a junction box that is slightly off-center with the room below. In order to fix this, and at the same time not move the current junction box, I'd like to stub up a pendant light through the drywall ceiling. The pendant light would be dead center within the room below. However, it would also be 6 inches or so to the right of the current junction box.

Is it within code to stub up a pendant light through the drywall ceiling, and wire the pendant light ( in the attic space above ) to the roughed in jbox? The junction box is around 6" from where the pendant light needs to go.

  • Are you really going to notice 6" on a 23' ceiling? Also kinda curious how you plan to change the bulbs. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Mar 16 '17 at 3:00

Only if the fixture has its own built in junction box. This is not common on most fixtures that are surface mounted, except for flat fluorescent fixtures or under counter fixtures. You do often find it in recessed fixtures, like can lights.

Fixtures that have built in boxes have a small entry hole for the cable and a clamping mechanism. If a fixture is rated to take a cable directly, rather than being mounted to an approved junction box, its installation instructions will make that clear.

If it is not rated for direct cable mount, the connection you propose will be against code, and more importantly, unsafe.

Finally, if it is code rated, you still have to leave the existing box accessible and need a blank cover over it.

  • The pendant light is a homemade steampunk light, so the fixture does not have its own junction box. The black iron pipe, of which the pendant is primarily composed of, will house the electrical wire. The plan is to have the electrical wire connected at the 'old junction box' and then ran down the top of the pendant light pipe ( which is in the attic ), down through the rest of the chandelier, and onto each of the lights. See pic imgur.com/a/g2NqJ of the design. – user782860 Mar 16 '17 at 1:09
  • Then it definitely does not meet code with a direct wire connection without an approved box. – bib Mar 16 '17 at 2:01

If you are going to go into the attic space to wire it to the other box then you can DO IT RIGHT and install a new box and wire it to one 6 inches away. If you are installing a steampunk iron fixture then you will need box rated to carry weight like a, STEEL CITY 15.8-cu in Metal Ceiling Electrical B. the arms attach to the joist's or truss's and carry the load.

STEEL CITY 15.8-cu in Metal Ceiling Electrical B

If your six inch mark falls on the truss or joist you can use on of these.

enter image description here

  • The current junctio box that's installed is the first picture that is shown. The problem isn't installing a junction box. The problem is the pendant/chandelier is over 150lbs. The pendant needs to go through the ceiling and be fastened directly to the joists do to the weight of the pendant. No junction box I know of will support the weight of the pendant. With that said, what is the proper way to wire this pendant, when the pendant is 6" or so away from the current junction box. – user782860 Mar 16 '17 at 14:26
  • 150 pounds who knEw. If you want the correct answer then you should supply all the information needed in order to achieve that. You'll have to put some blocking in and use a box that bolted directly to the blocking but it sounds like you've made up your mind that you're not going to use a junction box so good luck. – Alaska Man Mar 16 '17 at 15:25
  • No ordinary box can hold a 150-lb chandelier. You'd think that these would require an extra heavy duty or custom engineered attachment system. But the following article says that (at least some) metal fan braces are rated to support 150 lb. I would think though that bolts with nuts would be required to hold the chandelier to the box rather than screws popularmechanics.com/home/interior-projects/how-to/a12396/…. Some large fans have a backup safety cable. – Jim Stewart Mar 16 '17 at 21:28
  • Now that all the information has been laid out, there has to be a proper solution. There's 1000's of chandeliers that weigh this much and have been properly installed while meeting code. – user782860 Mar 18 '17 at 1:12

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