Long Distance Electrical Wiring
How to Install and Connect Long Distance Electrical Wiring: Ohms Law and Voltage Drop Calculations, Increased Wire Sizes and Connections to Electrical Devices, Sizing the Circuit Breaker.
Guide for Installing Long Distance Electrical Wires
Electrical Question: Can wires be trimmed down to fit into terminals or lugs or should I pull the wire out and replace it with smaller gauge wire?
- I have a hen house that I ran 4 #6 wires to, it was a great distance to the electrical panel.
- Because I had extra #6 wire and didn’t want to buy smaller wire on top of that I ran the #6 wire to the outlets I wanted in there.
- Naturally I discovered that the wire was too big to wire the 20 amp outlets I bought.
- Can these wire be “trimmed down” to fit or should I pull that wire out and replace it with smaller gauge wire?
This electrical wiring question came from: Robert, a Homeowner in Oregon.
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Robert.
How to Install and Connect Long Distance Electrical Wiring
Application: Install Electrical Wiring.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced. This electrical project is best performed by a Licensed Electrician.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and a Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools.
Precaution: Identify the circuit, turn it OFF and Tag it with a Note before working with the wiring.
Notice: Installing additional electrical wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.
Long Distance Electrical Wiring
- Installing Wire Over a Long Distance
There are a few details that are not provided in this question about your installation, however if the distance from the panel to the point of use was great then voltage drop can be an issue.
- Ohms Law and Voltage Drop Calculations
Calculating the wire size will depend on how much amperage or load the electrical circuit will require and what the actual length or distance of the wire will be.
- Increased Wire Sizes and Connections to Electrical Devices
The wire size will then be based on a calculations which will factor in this information. Because wire sizes may be increased due to a long distance, short lengths of reduced wire size may be used for connecting devices such as outlets and switches to the circuit wire.
- Sizing the Circuit Breaker
The circuit breaker must be sized to the smallest wire size, depending on the specific type of wire and the device being connected.
- Outdoor Circuits
Outdoor circuits especially in livestock areas must be protected by a GFCI device such as a GFI circuit breaker.
- Local Code Compliance
Please check with your local building department for applicable codes, permits and inspections.
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The following may also be helpful for you:
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.
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I want to run a 30 amp 240volt circuit 1000 ft for a well pump. The wire size has been increased because for voltage drop. How can I connect # 1 AWG to a 30 amp breaker?
Some circuit breakers will accommodate a conversion lug for the larger wire size, or strands of wire may be trimmed carefully to allow maximum termination to the circuit breaker. Apply electrical tape as needed to insulate the trimmed portion of wire.
Thanks for sharing your well pump wiring question with us,