Cable to Outside Light. Where Should it Go?

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by stem, 5 Mar 2010.

  1. stem

    stem

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    My mother has an outside light installed when her house was rewired about 25 years ago by the then EMEB (East Midlands Electricity Board) the T&E cable supplying it is clipped direct to the outside wall. (There didn't seem to be an issue with PVC and sunlight back then, as they also installed PVC on a catenary out to the garage, but that's another matter)

    Several times she has asked me if it would be possible to move the cable so that it's hidden. I've always told her that cables inside cavities are not allowed, and that it can't be buried inside the property because there would be nothing to indicate its presence. An answer that has always satisfied her....... until her sister moved into a fairly new build bungalow with several outside lights and no cables on show. There is nothing to indicate their presence inside the house such as a switch or other electrical accessory, nor could the cables be in a corner (safe zone).

    So I have now been called to task to explain. Any help would be appreciated.
     
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  3. dannyboi2003

    dannyboi2003

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    Because the cables for the lights on her sisters new house probably come out from the floorboards level so the safe zones issue doesnt apply. You could do the same on your mothers house and drill out from under the floor boards unless the lights are mounted higher in which case they will need to be moved.
     
  4. ban-all-sheds

    ban-all-sheds

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    They didn't have sunlight in the East Midlands 25 years ago.... :LOL:


    No, but seriously - there are ways in which the bungalow could have been done - conduit, BS 8436 cable, cables >50mm from the surface - you won't know unless you go and look.
     
  5. 1john

    1john

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    if you could get a flexible conduit up the cavity then you can run the cable in that.
     
  6. stem

    stem

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    But she lives in a
    There aren't any floorboards :eek:

    But I get your drift, unfortunately mum lives in a bungalow too.

    Probably not, but today we do :D probably be horrible for the weekend though :cry:
     
  7. ban-all-sheds

    ban-all-sheds

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    Are there ceilings?

    How high up are the external lights?
     
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  9. stem

    stem

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    The cable comes from the ceiling, out behind the soffit with about a 2' (60cm) drop down to the light.
     
  10. ban-all-sheds

    ban-all-sheds

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    I meant in her sister's new place.

    It will be really awkward to get to the eaves inside the loft, but putting the cables in the cavity will be the least disruptive solution. The reasons for not running cables in cavities are twofold:

    1) If CWI is installed then the cables could overheat or be damaged by contact with the insulation.

    2) They can't be properly supported.

    In this case (2) isn't an issue because of the short drop, and provided you don't use PVC cable and use a size which would be OK if it's rated current carrying capacity were halved then that would take care of (1).

    Or go with the flexible conduit idea, although that will require larger holes in the walls.

    Another thought which has just occurred to me is how far below the interior ceiling level are the lights? If you drilled upwards at an angle could you emerge within 150mm of the ceiling?
     
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  11. stem

    stem

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    Good idea, I think that has possibilities. I will investigate that when I go over on Sunday.
     
  12. londonboy

    londonboy

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    Thats what I did last time, with a metre long sds bit at a 45 degree angle ;)
     
  13. ban-all-sheds

    ban-all-sheds

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    It's scary how they wobble, isn't it.

    I'm normally a bit cavalier re eye protection when drilling holes in brick or block, but seeing that metre long bit precessing as well as rotating does make me switch off and think "I'll just get my goggles"... :confused:
     
  14. 1john

    1john

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    i like to start off with a 400mm bit first, then get the lengthy one out!
     
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