14awg behind baseboard heater?

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Old 07-12-18, 05:01 AM
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14awg behind baseboard heater?

The place we moved into (bought) has wires glued and tacked to the top of the baseboard and going around the room. Where there is a baseboard heater, they have run the cable behind the heater.
won't this mean that the cable is heated to a temperature behind its normal range when the heaters are on? They are 14awg behind the heaters connected to receptacles.
 

Last edited by qwertyjjj; 07-12-18 at 05:21 AM.
  #2  
Old 07-12-18, 05:22 AM
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Must be old Canadian code since a lot of houses have that. They were passed under the fact that the cables are not exposed to damage because they are firmly secured just above baseboard and not subject to damage (feet etc.) Same principle as running exposed cable along the ceiling wall? I don't like it much either but it seems to be ok with code?
If installed exposed, the NM cable must closely follow the building surface or another means of support for the cable must be provided.
 
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Old 07-12-18, 07:36 AM
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I have also seen installations with the cable stapled along the baseboard in older houses where electricity was added after construction. I think you're right to have some concern about the cable behind the heater. If it's wedged tight there is no air circulation so the cable is probably overheating back there. I'd probably try to relocate them if it was my house.
 
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Old 07-12-18, 09:12 AM
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I should have been more careful with my answer. You are right I was wrong.
 
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Old 07-12-18, 06:52 PM
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Lol, I'm merely asking if code allows exposed cable because it seems it does as long as it can't be damaged (which is debatable).
I'm more worried about the overheating aspect reducing the capacity of the copper...
 
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Old 07-13-18, 05:55 AM
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The older houses seem to have solid walls of wood on one side (no studs). I think it would still be possible to remove the lathe and somehow get metal or some other protection in there but that seems to be why these were installed along baseboard. Whoever did it, would not have been able to destroy the floor to feed the wires (unless doing it from the ceiling on floor below). Any suggestions as to what to fit in by cutting out the lathe? Maybe a raceway seems easiest but how do I get a raceway to go around the baseboard heater and onto the next heater in the circuit?
 

Last edited by qwertyjjj; 07-13-18 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 07-13-18, 10:08 AM
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What part of the code prevents exposed cable on baseboard (if not subject to damage)?
 
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Old 07-13-18, 10:50 AM
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What part of the code prevents exposed cable on baseboard (if not subject to damage)?
None in U.S. code but I can't say for Canadian.
 
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Old 07-13-18, 11:09 AM
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The code US or Canada does not give many specific rules as to where non-metallic cables are allowed. It uses word like "subject to damage", "supported" and "protected" with the intention of the local inspector making that decision based on the specific case. Over time I believe inspectors have gotten more strict on interpreting the "damage" clause for non-metallic cables. Exposed romex was often allowed in the past whereas if you were to do that same job today I bet the inspector would fail the job even though the language of the code hasn't changed that much.
 
 

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