Questions tagged [old-work]

Electrical wiring and junction boxes that are designed for usage in an existing home.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
1 vote
0 answers
30 views

Need advice tracing and troubleshooting old to new wiring and an accidental ring circuit in 100 year old US house

I'm in the US (Minnesota) in 100 year old house that has a c.1980 Square D 150 amp panel. I am working to de-energize some knob-and-tube I've recently discovered that is buried under insulation in the ...
OldHouseMN's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
2k views

Safe, easy way to tap into taut NM cable in wall?

I am trying to add a wall sconce. I determined that there is wiring coming down from the attic crawlspace to receptacle low in the wall. I knocked a hole in the drywall as shown above, where it has ...
Alan H.'s user avatar
  • 205
0 votes
0 answers
33 views

Is there an "old work" NM cable clamp for metal boxes? [duplicate]

I'm trying to add an additional outlet below a metal box. I was gonna tie on to that circuit and just drop the romex down the wall (it's about 3' off the ground), install an old work box and go about ...
Gilligan's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
569 views

Can I ground only part of my house?

Background: My house was built in the 50s (I think) or thereabout. Hence the electrical wiring reflects the understanding of that time and is not the way that current (2023) code and safety ...
THill3's user avatar
  • 127
0 votes
2 answers
135 views

Stapling cable inside of a box when there is no room

There are rules that Romex cable has to be stapled within a foot or so from the electrical box. However, there is an exception when doing rewiring (because wall is not open). I am rewiring from knob-...
divB's user avatar
  • 1,255
2 votes
1 answer
3k views

Can I use an old-work box on an exterior wall?

I would like to add an outlet to my deck -- there is no power there and running an extension cord around the house to another exterior outlet is a total bummer. I actually have relatively convenient ...
Sidney's user avatar
  • 1,645
0 votes
0 answers
161 views

Exhaust wiring problems in a old house

I'm remodeling a bathroom from 1932, at some point someone put an exhaust fan/light/heater combo in. With all 3 functions on separate switches. It has 3 stacked switches in a single 1 gang box. The ...
Brad's user avatar
  • 1
0 votes
0 answers
16 views

Kitchen drain older copper metal steel replace put a new one in

I'm trying to remove a drain out of a sink it's the older one I don't think it's ever been replaced the actual centerpiece it's letting all the debris go down it needs to be taken out so what do I do ...
Ky Freedom's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
67 views

Replacing old electrical work

Bought an old house (1911) over the summer and I'm looking into making the upstairs more livable. The upstairs is a converted attic, there are three rooms and a hallway and only three outlets in total ...
user3286057's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
257 views

How can I remove foamboard insulation from behind drywall so electrical box tabs have clearance to grab?

I'm planning on adding a lot double-gang old-work boxes to a wall that is made of 2" foam and 1/2" drywall on top of 2x4 studs. The tabs on old-work boxes don't reach far enough to grip the ...
Brandon's user avatar
  • 31
0 votes
2 answers
644 views

Install old work low voltage bracket in too big hole

I'm trying to repair a low voltage outlet that was butchered by our cable installer. I was hoping I could reuse the bracket he had used by the "wings" were on serrated or corrugated tabs ...
Alf Neuman's user avatar
6 votes
5 answers
4k views

How do I keep a GFCI outlet with tight clearance from shorting inside a steel electrical box?

I was replacing outlets and faceplates in my kitchen, finding mostly original electrical boxes or blue old-work boxes, and everything was going fine until I tested a double-gang GFCI outlet and outlet ...
Neil Steiner's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
426 views

Grounding recommendation at a remote receptacle/ground rod?

My home was built in the 1930s with knob and tube wiring. The previous owner(s) replaced or augmented it, a bit at a time, and when I purchased the home from the last one he said that there was no ...
ehbowen's user avatar
  • 429
10 votes
5 answers
26k views

"Old Work" electrical box: should it be screwed into the stud?

I'm interested in replacing an existing outlet (in a wall that's finished with drywall) with a two-gang duplex (four outlets total), using an "old work" box. This box is located in the ...
whiskeychief's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
4k views

How to fix broken screw hole in ceiling box? (re: ceiling light fixture; how to replace the box?)

I was trying to take down the ceiling light above my kitchen table and in the process one of the plastic screw holes in the ceiling box broke: This ceiling box holds a ceiling light (14.2 lbs) so I ...
SofaKng's user avatar
  • 361
0 votes
0 answers
143 views

Why does a light switch that is switched off show 50 volts between hot and neutral? [duplicate]

It's a two-wire light fixture without ground. When the switch is on I measure 120 volts between the hot and neutral in the ceiling fixture. If I switch it off I measure 50 volts. Why?
brentonstrine's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
114 views

Tips for getting cables through old work box knockouts and into wall

I’m replacing a botched 3 gang switch box (formerly consisted of two incompatible boxes together, cover plate did not fit right). I have clamps on all my cables and am ready to put them through the ...
Ivan G.'s user avatar
  • 245
4 votes
3 answers
3k views

How to remove old-work ceiling light fixture box attached to conduit pipes

I am trying to install thin LED recessed lights in my hallway. I need to remove the old ceiling box, as shown in the picture. I tried to remove the box for the whole day but was unsuccessful. I cut ...
NIT_GUP's user avatar
  • 121
3 votes
1 answer
610 views

How should an unused knob and tube run be terminated?

What are the safe and compliant options for terminating an unused knob and tube branch? In this instance, insulation will be applied, so the fixtures and receptacles previously on this circuit have ...
Ivan G.'s user avatar
  • 245
0 votes
2 answers
489 views

Tips for replacing a wire inside a wall?

Last night we were experiencing some power glitches then around 1am it went out completely, but only part of the house. Thinking there could be a potential fire hazard somewhere, I stayed home today ...
Phaelax z's user avatar
  • 608
3 votes
2 answers
111 views

Need Tips for Mounting screw-in Slider electrical Boxes

I know they've been around awhile but I'm still kind of new to them. I occasionally have to mount these Allied slider boxes in new and old work situations, and sometimes they go in perfectly with no ...
Nicknamednick's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
51 views

Old wiring trying to change a switch outlet to half hot outlet

In setting up my work from home office in my 1950's triplex I am trying to change an outlet from a switch to half hot. I snapped the tab on the side but when I was working with the wires realized I ...
Julie M's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
2k views

Replacing old 60's junction box with recessed lighting

I want to replace a light fixture that was put in the 60s with recessed light. The junction box looks to be held in place by a metal 'u' shaped bar, with the 'u' bend going over the junction box. ...
Anh's user avatar
  • 41
0 votes
1 answer
816 views

Switch outlets to permanently hot. Switch to control new recessed lights

I have a small room with one switch outlet and 3 Hot outlets on the same circuit. The work is old and ungrounded. I’m looking to make the switched outlet permanantly hot and use the switch location to ...
J.Johnson's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

Vanity light installation using an old work box

I have a vanity light that weighs 5.6 lbs. The old work box I have is rated for 6 lbs. This seems very close to me. Is there something else I should be using?
Jim's user avatar
  • 19
5 votes
3 answers
56k views

How do I safely extend electrical wiring without replacing it entirely?

I'm in the process of replacing a light fixture with a ceiling fan. I replaced the old mount with a pan ceiling support box. The wiring is old (1920s) and inside armored cable coming through the stud. ...
Kai's user avatar
  • 263
4 votes
3 answers
17k views

Old Work Box for Vanity Light?

So I went to go change my bathroom vanity light today and discovered that it simply had the wiring coming through a hole in the wall and the previous vanity was literally just screwed into the wall ...
msmith1114's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
384 views

Possible to attach an external electrical box to an old work box?

I have an old work box occupied by 6 ethernet keystones and the corresponding wall plate. I want to use a branching raceway to hide the ethernet patch cables coming out of the wall. But without other ...
CodeBricks's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
538 views

Can I ground a new light to an old metal box via a switch yoke?

All of my switches are installed in old metal boxes with no threaded ground screw holes. The boxes are wired using old cloth BX with no ground wire(grounded via casing). Some of the BX wire ...
Dave's user avatar
  • 11
2 votes
1 answer
2k views

Attach receptacle box to baseboard via screws through plaster ears?

The plaster ears on old work metal receptacle boxes (see example) each have two holes on the face of them. Is it ok to put screws through these holes to secure the box to baseboard? In this ...
PhilPDX's user avatar
  • 399
4 votes
1 answer
3k views

Install fire/smoke alarm directly to stud or in electrical box?

I am installing (6) brand new smoke alarms in my home, including running all new 14/3 wire to each alarm. I have purchased "old work" electrical boxes for all of the alarms. However, the existing ...
StephenH's user avatar
  • 250
6 votes
2 answers
17k views

Plastic electrical box tabs - ok if broken?

I've come across this using "old-work" boxes, but all plastic boxes for switches and outlets are basically the same: These boxes have 4 knock outs per gang and they open at an angle. They seem to be ...
JPhi1618's user avatar
  • 27.9k
0 votes
1 answer
175 views

Converting a table into a counter

I want to take a sentimental (but not expensive) table that my father built my husband and I for our first apartment. He used old spindles from my parents first home and the hardwood . And made a ...
Gabrielle's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
229 views

How do I add wire to a rusted electric box?

I'm adding a plug to a closet so that I can put my server and router in there. I am trying to daisy chain it off of the nearest plug, but when I try to remove any of the knockouts they won't budge, ...
Eric C's user avatar
  • 147
2 votes
2 answers
271 views

What are the considerations for crawlspace encapsulation barriers / humidity control?

I live in a house that's half slab, half crawlspace. The crawl is half basement. Typical crawlspace/basement humidity readings are: 80% RH @ 67°F 85% RH @ 68°F 78% RH @ 67°F Where in the ...
Bryce's user avatar
  • 10.9k
0 votes
1 answer
172 views

Repairing a circuit when the break is unknown and inaccesible.

Background: 100+ year old house with lots of really janky, messed up stuff. Some novice before me has been monkeying around, so don't assume that the current wiring is sane, safe, legal, modern etc. ...
adamwong246's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
5k views

Am I going to die of Cancer from Asbestos if not handled correct? What more should I do? [closed]

So I have scrapped down old pop corn ceiling and removed staple on tile on drywall attached to plaster, that can be only lord knows how old. I didn't hang any barriers up as we are planning to do ...
user2140261's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
2k views

How should I mount a rework box if it has to go through an MDF/wood panel and drywall?

I need to install a combination power and low voltage box in the ceiling of my finished basement for my home theater projector. I can't bolt the projector mount directly to the studs because of ...
Dino Z.'s user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
294 views

How do I wire a switch to a fixture that is served by wires in an iron pipe?

I have wall sconces similar to the one pictured below in my apartment: The only difference between this and the picture is in addition to containing the switch, there is a power outlet in the bottom ...
Brian Colavito's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
36k views

Is it possible to install a ceiling fan without an electrical box?

A while ago I had some electricians install a ceiling fan mount. Now that I've finally gotten around to installing a fan I've discovered that they didn't install any sort of electrical box to house ...
Brad Mace's user avatar
  • 2,495
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

How do I install an old work junction box around fire blocking?

I have an interior wall with a one-gang light switch; it contains a dual dimmer. I'm trying to change this to a single dimmer, and to add a new switch (to drive the other load) on the opposite side ...
Geoff's user avatar
  • 245
5 votes
2 answers
1k views

How can I trim off the corner of this stud?

As I was preparing to install a 3-gang old-work box I discovered a random cripple stud whose only purpose for existing is screwing up this project for me: In the bottom right is the corner of a 2x6 ...
Brad Mace's user avatar
  • 2,495