We have some underground wires for low voltage lighting in our front yard. Note they are just wires buried in the ground and not inserted in tubes. I want to remove some of the lights and need to know the correct way to "patch" the wires once the light has been disconnected.

How do I fix the wire that was spliced before putting it back into the ground? I was thinking of putting a pigtail wire nut and sealing it with hot glue. Is that good enough?

  • 2
    Hot glue doesn't seal things. It's not sticky enough to create a bond with plastic, etc.
    – isherwood
    Apr 13, 2022 at 13:16
  • Do you know for sure that there are splices? Some LV lights are connected via clamping connectors which penetrate the insulation of the supply wires. These can simply be removed. Apr 13, 2022 at 15:37
  • @PhilFreedenberg my lights are connected to the main cable w/ pigtail wire nuts. The nuts are sealed with some kind of black sealer. And it's been holding up for over 20 years now.
    – Quoc Vu
    Apr 14, 2022 at 0:28

3 Answers 3


For low voltage underground splices look for "dryconns" or waterproof wire nuts to make the splices. If you bury these directly in the ground they won't last long. Movement of the soil will tear them apart. You should put them in accessible splice boxes, such as small valve boxes where they will last longer and can be more easily maintained.

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Ideally you would not have any underground splices in your wiring. While they are common, they are also problematic. If it's possible to insert the wires into integral junction boxes in your light fixtures with no splices in between them, that's preferable. Consider moving the lights slightly or replacing cables to achieve this.

I've also seen landscapers run LV cable on the surface. They use green cable camouflaged in the ground cover with water tight splice boxes also sitting on the ground. I'm not a fan of that, I think it's WAY to prone to being damaged by animals, lawn mowers, and people walking on them.

  • If you have say, ten pathway lights, it's pretty much impossible (and unattractive) to put a hand box/"valve box" next to each light. I've never seen anyone do this. The most common thing I've seen is the clamp connectors that pierce the insulation on the main supply line so you don't have to cut it. I have no idea how waterproof those are, but ours have worked for 25 years.
    – Robert M.
    Aug 22, 2022 at 17:40

It's low voltage so you can probably do that if you want to without bothering any authorities.

On the other hand, I would be dubious about the waterproofness, longevity and reliability of doing that, rather than using things made for the job, which are available.

A quick look shows low voltage wirenuts "prefilled with non-hardening petroleum sealant" (pushed for sprinkler control applications, but probably work for lighting loads as well) and there are of course waterproof heat-shrink splice kits that are not limited to low voltage, but work just fine for it as well as higher voltage.

  • "prefilled with non-hardening petroleum sealant" sounds like they put a dab of petroleum jelly in them and mark up the price.
    – crip659
    Apr 12, 2022 at 21:31
  • @crip659 I think it's conductive jelly. And there are little flaps to keep it in. Maybe that makes you a little less cynical about the pricing? :)
    – jay613
    Apr 13, 2022 at 13:26

I coat the wire nuts with silicone on the many connection for my sprinkler valves. No problems for 20 years. If the silicone RTV works foe aquariums it should work in damp soil.

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