Can an open junction box be allowed over an enclosed ceiling?


Yes, you should install covers on the boxes.

You should be able to pick up covers at the local hardware or big box, fairly cheap. Just make sure you measure all the boxes, and note their shape, before heading to the store. If the mounting screws are not in the boxes, you'll also have to pick up some of those.

Chapter 3 Wiring Methods

Article 314 Outlet, Device, Pull, and Junction Boxes; Conduit Bodies; Fittings; and Handhole Enclosures.

314.25 Covers and Canopies. In completed installations, each box shall have a cover, faceplate, lampholder, or luminaire canopy, except where the installation complies with 410.24(B). Screws used for the purpose of attaching covers, or other equipment to the box, shall be either machine screws matching the thread gage or size that is integral to the box or in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.

No, you cannot cover the boxes with drywall. The boxes must remain accessible.


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Installing a light fixture or outlet in the ceiling requires an electrical junction box to hold the wire connections and the fixture or device. Installing such a box in a finished ceiling can be a bit tricky; not only must you ensure the brace bar connects to the ceiling joists securely, but you must make sure the box does not sit too far into the attic or protrude into the room below.

Find the joists near where you want to install a ceiling electrical junction box by sliding a stud finder over the ceiling. Mark the positions of the joists nearest to where you want to install the box.

Place the open side of the ceiling junction box that came with an expandable brace kit against the ceiling where you want the box installed. Make the location between joists, not on a joist. Trace around the box.

Push the end of a jab saw through the ceiling drywall along the trace line. Use the saw to cut along the line to create a hole in the ceiling.

Insert the brace...

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An electrical junction box is a container made out of metal or hard plastic that contains the


junctions or intersections for electrical connections. These help the wiring in the home or public building interface with the main power supply provided by a local utility. The general purpose of a junction box is to conceal the electrical junctions from sight and to keep them from being tampered with. Here are some of the frequently asked questions answered by Experts regarding junction boxes.

Is having a junction box fitted into the wall a violation of the electric code?

It is not against the code as long as you take care to see that the junction box is not buried behind the sheet rock. You will need to install a blank cover over it as the code dictates that every splice needs to be accessible.

Is there a electrical code that specifies if a junction box is required in a crawl space of a house or can taped wires be left in its place?

It is...

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Another problem with wire connections can occur around the screw terminals of outlets or switches. With a proper connection, the bare wire (that part of the wire not covered with plastic insulation) wraps around the terminal screw and is completely covered by the screw head. Some amateur electricians make the mistake of stripping away too much insulation from the wire, so that a small section of bare wire extends beyond the screw.

All cable connections should be enclosed within a metal junction box. The cable entering the junction box must be anchored to the box with a cable clamp (available at home centers). The clamp is important because it secures the cable so it can't rub against the sharp edges of the knockout (the hole in the side of the junction box). (Note: some codes do not require a clamp with a plastic junction box, provided the cable is secured to a framing member within...

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Electrical junction box in the process of installation.

Electrical conduits

terminate at the sides and


pass through or are joined inside the box.

Australian Internal Surface Mounted Junction Box - showing wiring stages.

An electrical junction box is an enclosure housing electrical connections, to protect the connections and provide a safety barrier.


A small metal or plastic junction box may form part of an electrical conduit or thermoplastic-sheathed cable (TPS) wiring system in a building. If designed for surface mounting, it is used mostly in ceilings, under floors or concealed behind an access panel - particularly in domestic or commercial buildings. An appropriate type (such as that shown on the left) may be buried in the plaster of a wall (although full concealment is no longer allowed by modern codes and standards) or cast into concrete - with only the cover visible.

It sometimes includes built-in...

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Most electrical boxes are either metal or plastic. If you are using metal conduit to run wiring to the electrical box, then a metal box is required—to anchor the conduit and because the conduit and metal box system itself may be used to ground the system. If you are using non-metallic cable, such as Type NM-B (non-metallic sheathed cable), then you can use either plastic boxes or metal boxes, as long as the cable is secured to the box with an appropriate cable clamp.

Modern wiring systems with... NM-B cable usually include a ground wire inside the cable, so the box is not part of the grounding system (however, metal boxes must be connected to the system ground, usually with a short length of wire called a pigtail)....

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Schematic Diagram for 1 way lighting

Switch terminal markings

A two way light switch can also be used instead of a single way light switch by connecting between wither Com and L1 or Com and L2.
Hint, if the light switches off when the switch is in the on position, swop the wire from L1 to L2.

Alternative marking

Alternative markings may also be used as in this diagram.

How they are wired

Using a junction box:

Click here for non harmonized colours
Junction boxes need to be in an accessable location for inspection.
Chock block for the light fitting must be enclosed in fitting or in a suitable enclosure above ceiling which is accessable for inspection. The chock block must not exposed to heat from the lamp.
If a metal light switch is used, connect the earth wire to the earth terminal on the light switch and loop to the back box.

Using a loop...

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My extreme apologizes yacunix, as I just received notification!

I do realize the gravity of your problem due to,

A) Your indication of shutting all power off to your residential structure

B) The grave safety factors that are involved, and it is my contention that you should be led step, by step, with safety guidelines being implemented during the entire course of the procedures involved.

All safety issues Need to be addressed, Before starting the procedures, and During the procedures.

In my possible defense, and this website's defense, I would wish you to know why my response is so late.

I didn't provide a Solution. I provided information in a Clarification. This was implemented, because I hadn't provided any sort of solution to your problem, just possible information to tools you may want to consider, and a way to start diagnosing your problem.

I was alerted that you had posted again, and had my user name in the heading, by a...

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Warning: To complete electrical works you must comply with Electrical Regulations – Click here for more information.

Working With Junction Boxes Safely

Part P of the new building regulations could involve a check on any additional circuitry by qualified electricians when you sell your home. This can affect your sale, you could be breaking the law and your house insurance may not be valid. Please be absolutely sure you know what you are doing and get all of your work checked by a qualified electrician. Make sure you turn all power off and isolate the circuits you are working on.

What are Junction Boxes Used for?

Junction boxes can be used to connect additional sockets to circuits, add lighting points, extend circuits, and in general they are a way of getting power from an existing source and taking it somewhere else. They can also be used for repairs.

If a wire has become damaged, the damaged section can be cut out and teh two sections joined...

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There is attic, but with no access to this room from above.

I don't understand. Can you go into your attic and put your hand on the old fixture box that you want to replace?

If so, you can mount a new box there to use to splice the two BX cables together. If not, you should be able to install a fan-rated box that's deep enough to provide room for the extra conductors and splices.

To answer your original question, yes, you can use a box that a ceiling fan is mounted on to splice a different circuit through, so long as it's big enough.

Posted By: pcboss As Ray said, as long as the fan box has spare cubic inch capacity and is fan rated you are fine.

Three of us have said that...

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Connections are permitted in attics so long as they are considered an accessible space, and they are in a mounted, covered, compliant junction box with a mechanically fastened cover. For attic space connections without an access to the space an access door is required, and for areas without access, you would have to mount the box so it is through the ceiling with a cover plate on the occupied side of it. Where sufficiently large florescent fixtures are installed in hard ceiling, 2X4 and 2X2 feet, they may be considered an access location, if they can be lifting out so a person can reach the junction box through the fixture opening. This is common in commercial buildings where hard ceilings are used, since the florescent fixtures usually are wired from a central circuit, and may require junction boxes to feed from regular conduit to flexible conduit for powering the...

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I'm now doing some substantial remodeling. In the course of the projects a number of junction boxes were found hidden behind the sheetrock. I know that current code doesn't allow reconciled junction boxes at all.

The house is middle-aged, some parts date from the 50's and 60's. There were 2 major additions - an 880 sq ft addition and later a second floor after a fire. These additions were both were properly permitted and inspected at the time. It's apparent that there were also several smaller remodels over the years (repartitioning rooms, adding ceiling lights, adding a bathroom, etc). It seems that these were not permitted and inspected. FWIW, this situation is extremely common in the area. Many houses are much, much older and have had ongoing and undocumented changes for 150+ years. Anyway, here are my questions:

Were concealed junction boxes ever allowed by code? Is it acceptable to have a hidden junction box behind an access panel? If not please explain....
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Electrical junction boxes are devices that contain the wiring junctions or intersections that allow the wiring in the home or public building to interface with the main power supply provided by a local utility. The presence of the box is generally regarded as both practical and more esthetically pleasing than a bunch of exposed electrical wires. While the exact configuration for electrical junctions containers of this type vary slightly, there are a few basic elements that are common to all designs.

For many people, the main purpose of a junction box is to conceal the electrical junctions from sight. Usually constructed with the use of metal or hard plastic, the general appearance of the box is either a square or rectangular design. A door on the front allows access to the interior. The door may be recessed in the front of the junction box, or the entire facing may swing upward or downward to allow access to the junctions within the device. In many homes, the box proper is...

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