Code Question of the Day with Charlie Trout

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The National Electrical Code is the bedrock of the electrical construction business.

Do you know all the ins and outs of the Code? NECA and Electrical Contractor magazine are pleased to present their daily online feature, “Code Question of the Day.”

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Code Question Of The Day

Monday, January 23, 2012

Subject: CQD - December 15, 2011

Hi Charlie,

Would you send some of that warm weather from Chicago up to Wisconsin? A comment for CQD 12/15/2011. Your response to Question 1 is right on. The cord is required to, as they say in 400.8 not be run through or located above suspended or dropped ceilings. In response to Question 2, there are a lot of low voltage transformers for security and other applications that plug directly into a receptacle outlet and then have Class 2 wiring from the transformer running to equipment in or below the suspended ceiling. This does not appear to be a violation as long as the space above the suspended ceiling is not a “Other Space Used for Environmental Air.” Keep up the good work and stay warm.

Bill Neitzel



Hi Bill, thanks for commenting. There is no NEC requirement that prohibits installing a receptacle outlet in a suspended or dropped ceiling. NEC 400.8(5) prohibits a flexible cord from being permanently installed where located above suspended or dropped ceilings. I think we have run his one to death. Let’s get on to other subjects.


Section: 400.8(5)
Source: Charlie Trout

ABOUT CQD: NECA’s Code Question of the Day (CQD) is Charlie Trout’s flagship National Electrical Code® forum for NECA and the industry. The CQD continues to generate a lively dialogue and relative Code-based and practical responses to an ever-increasing and interactive audience.

ABOUT CHARLIE: Charles M. Trout, better known as Charlie, is a nationally known NEC® expert and author. He served on several NEC® technical committees and is past chairman of CMP-12. In 2006 Charlie was awarded the prestigious Coggeshall Award for outstanding contributions to the electrical contracting industry, codes and standards development, and technical training.

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IMPORTANT NOTICE: All answers are based on the latest edition of the National Electrical Code®, unless the question requests a response based on a specific edition. This correspondence is not a formal interpretation of the NEC®. Any responses expressed to the questions are opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of NECA, NFPA, or any technical committee. In addition, this correspondence is neither intended, nor should it be relied upon, to provide professional consultation or services.

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