I discovered some seemingly-inefficient wiring and a hidden junction box in the wall. I understand why they would put it there, but it still seems inefficient. I think the same could be accomplished differently, eliminating the need for the junction box or possibly relocating it at a normal outlet height, but I'm not sure how.
I've drawn out the wiring diagram.
- L1 = Exterior light fixture 1
- L2 = Exterior light fixture 2
- S1 = Switch that should control both exterior lights (L1 and L2)
- S2 = Empty slot for a switch
- S3 = Switch for ceiling fan outlet
- Junction boxes
- J1 = Round junction box 1 (no access, faces outside, this is what I want to remove, or relocate at normal outlet height, if possible)
Some important notes
- Yellow and orange are on different circuits. I don't want to add anything to the wall heater line. I put it here for reference only.
- Right now, the yellow and orange lines are 12/2. I can replace whatever is visible, pretty much. But, I prefer strongly to avoid replacing the wire bringing power into the first exterior outlet (it runs behind stone and access is only possible if I remove major sections of the exterior wall on the left side of the house). I also prefer to avoid re-running wire number 5; it's not as hard, but it would require me opening up the right side wall to find the next endpoint.
- Since S2 is empty, I would like to use this for additional interior light control. But, those lights aren't installed yet. They would tap into line 5 (on another wall).
- Due to L1's (and stud) position, there is almost no room behind L1. So, it has to use a pancake electrical box. There isn't room in that box for much.
- Similarly, due to the stud position, the switch boxes for S1 and S2+S3 are a tight fit in those spaces. The space between studs where S1 is located cannot fit more than a single gang box. The space where S2+S3 is located cannot fit more than a 2 gang box.
- Not shown are the horizontal fireblocks. I mention this since the hole currently can fit 3 12/2 or 12/3 wires alright. Unless I'm not mistaken, local code limits NM-B per bored hole to 3.
- Number 5 run continues into the next side wall. It's not an end run. I don't want 5 to be switched.
- I do have access to the crawlspace. I haven't run wire in a crawlspace before, so I'd have to figure out what the code is for that. I prefer to avoid doing this, if I can.
- NM Cable Splices aren't compliant in this case (based on local code requirements).
Note that I wouldn't mind relocating J1 junction box underneath the switches (i.e., outlet height). But, that would put it under the fireblock and I'd need to keep the wires going through there to 3 or less. This seems necessary either way if I need to make the junction box accessible without it looking ugly inside.
Any recommendations here?