Running electrical line to the coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by MrJesse34, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. MrJesse34

    MrJesse34 In the Brooder

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    That is GREAT info, Dogfish!! Do you think I can get away with running the underground wire, then terminating it with a plug in the garage? That way I can plug into an existing grounded circuit (GFCI or whatever). This will run off an existing underutilized circuit in my house. I can run a bright light for the garden using your suggestions. Then I can install a switched outlet at the chicken coop that I can use for a heated waterer (in the winter) and a night time light.

    Does that seem right to you?
     
  2. cooper38

    cooper38 In the Brooder

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    12-2 wg is rated for 20 amps in a residential application. National electric code states it has to be at least 12" deep, if your going to be doing any plowing or any thing like that it needs to be deeper. If all you want is a circuit for the coop and see no need for any thing else in the future use 1/2" pvc, it is plenty big enough for one 12-2 and use regular "romex" instead of UF wire. Romex is 1/2 price of uf, and uf is not required or needed it it is installed in a raceway like pvc conduit. The easiest way to run the wire and conduit is to open the ditch, roll the wire out so it lays flat on the ground beside the ditch, slide the conduit over the wire and glue it as you go. once you have it all together lay it over in the ditch all at once. Saves on pulling string and fish tapes.
     
  3. jamband

    jamband Songster

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    I would be very careful with some of the info being shared here. I have been through the process of wiring outbuildings in several different areas and you almost always need a permit.....Actually to do any electrical work you usually need a permit. You cannot run an outbuilding on a circuit already in your house. It has to be a dedicated circuit tapped into the box. Also 12-2 may or may not meet code for 100 foot run. Where and how the electric is buried will vary greatly depending where you live. I have used uf buried without conduit in the past and it meets code some places. The depth will vary from 12 to 24 inches. Your best bet is to get some info from an inspector without giving away your info and plan. YOU as a homeowner have a right to preform any and all repairs on your house and cannot be forced to hire anyone, as long as you can show you have the ability.

    If you want to run wiring to the garden too why not just go totally legit on your plans? Tap a new circuit into you box and run the electric you need now and think big picture....maybe you will build a shed sometime or a workshop? Need to run another water line? run it in the same ditch.....Unpermitted electrical work can lead to nightmares if you ever sell. It won't cost that much more to do it right and permanent.

    Just my opinion. Good luck
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  4. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

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    If they plan on running a light or two, it is a glorified overbuilt extension cord. If they are planning on making it a mother-in-law cabin, that is a whole other issue.

    We are dying the death of a thousand cuts. Better to ask forgiveness than permission sometimes. Never invite "the man" into your life.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  5. jamband

    jamband Songster

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    Quote:I get that and the desire to do it easy but then just leave the extension cord.......Don't do a lot of work, and a 100 ft ditch is a lot of work, to have a half ***** finish. I would leave the cord or do it all the way right but that's just my opinion.
     
  6. spotstealer

    spotstealer Songster

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    Quote:I did generally the same thing, and rather than running directly off the CB panel, I tied in to an outlet from my laundry room. I ran it through to the outside, into conduit, then underground to the coop. I then ran another piece of conduit to an outdoor box with a GFCI outlet. Mine also is built and set on blocks, therby avoiding the requirements of having permits.
     
  7. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Songster

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    Do check what codes are in your area because underground lines you bury will cause problems when/if you want to sell down the road. You can rent a walk behind trencher for electric lines depth but, water lines need a bigger trencher which can be rented too but, you need to know how. If you find you can do it yourself - make sure you draw out exactly where the under ground lines are buried and keep records which other people can decipher for future.
     
  8. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

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    A temporary plugged in line that is burried in conduit will have no effect on the saleability of your property. As instructed, done by someone who knows what they are doing, there will be no issues.

    I finance real estate, commercial and residential, for a living. In 19 years, I have never seen one of these, "well, it could happen" scenarios take place.

    Overbuild it for your sake, not for the sake of the city or county.

    Many changes to the electrical code have no bearing on practical electrical safety. My shop doesn't have TR/WR outlets, didn't have to, because of when the permit was pulled. The house, permit pulled a few months later, same property, had to have TR and WR outlets. Both are built to code. Go figure.

    Nanny state.
     
  9. jamband

    jamband Songster

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    Quote:Any buried electrical wires would technically fall into NEC code. Sure you could just unplug , cut and pull if you need to sell and it was an issue but again why rent a trencher, destroy a 12" x 100' section of your yard, work really hard, spend money on conduit, wire, etc etc. to still basically have a glorified extension plug.


    From a real estate perspective I think it would be nicer to be able to say hey there is full electric to the garden and coop/shed area. Its a good feature to have. I have a 100 ft extension cord across my yard to a shed and I hate it. Flipping a switch would be so much nicer.
     
  10. darkmatter

    darkmatter Songster

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    I built my Coop nearly twenty years ago and never intended to run electricity or water. Works fine, see my BYC page for pics of my setup. Heat is not needed if the coop is managed for the climate----windows open/closed, ventilation, etc.

    [​IMG]
     

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