04:55AM | 11/04/00
Member Since: 11/03/00
2 lifetime posts
My home was built a long time ago, I am guessing 1960. I wanted to had 12volt Hampton Bay fixture. After opening the box, a WARNING sign was on the flap telling me older homes have supply wired rated at 60 degrees Cel. RISK of FIRE. What are thy talking about?

Thanks in advance


08:25AM | 11/04/00
Member Since: 07/21/00
76 lifetime posts
New code requires houses to be wired with wire that is rated for 90 degree celsius wire. This means that the insulation can withstand higher temperatures before it melts down and causes a short. Higher amperaged drawing devices will result in higher temperatures being produce in the wire resulting in an increased chance of a short and/or fire. If you install the halogen device it will generate heat that could cause a short. I am not saying that it would definately cause a short, just that the chance is increased. The company that manufactures the device puts that label on it to cover itself in case someone installs it in an older house and to adhere to the current code requirements. The code does state that whenever a device that is rated for a lower temperature is placed on a circuit then the whole circuit is reduced to the rating of that device. So if you were installing an old breaker rated for say 60 degrees celsius on a circuit that had wire rated for 90 degrees celcius then the whole circuit would be derated to the value of 60 degrees. Although this is not too relevent to your situation it gives you an idea of how the code is concerned about the temperature rating of circuits and the integration of new and old electric devices together.

As far as installing that fixture on the existing circuit, many electricians and homeowners would probably go ahead and install it if the wire is in good shape and there is ample room for heat dispersion. If you were adding a room addition to the house and adding a lot of devices to one circuit then an inspector would most likely look at the old wiring and make a judgement as to whether or not it needs to be replaced. You are probably not going to get a permit to change this fixture and not going to need an inspector. Ultimately in a situation like this homeowners will assume the risk and make a decision for themself. I strongly urge you to get the opinion of a qualified electrician if you have any doubts about installing this fixture in your home.

[This message has been edited by ElectrcBil (edited November 04, 2000).]


01:52PM | 11/04/00
Member Since: 11/03/00
2 lifetime posts
Thanks for the information. My luck the whole house would burn down.

I think I will look for a different fixture. Thanks Again.


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