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View Full Version : Ideas to illuminate right side of house...


andersman02
09-23-2012, 11:35 PM
So we did my first lighting job a few weeks back for a friend, lighting went up easy enough and like I thought would happen, the left side of the house (right side from the street) looks "left out" during the night times. We got a 4.5w uplight for the ninebark trees on the right but ended up not using it as I didnt want to cause to much clutter along with uneven lighting on the two entrance trees (they didnt want to install a conduit for the other tree).

how do you guys think i could give the right side ( from the street) some attention during the night? We do have an extra smallish up light that could be used, i was thinking something along the lines of lighting up the rock and hydrangea with the corner of the house as a backdrop but wasnt sure howd that would look.

We can also still return the small flood for a different fixture as we havent openned it yet.....

http://i1229.photobucket.com/albums/ee469/andersman02/DSCF1209_zps2dea6fdb.jpg
http://i1229.photobucket.com/albums/ee469/andersman02/DSCF1207_zpsa99f7f9d.jpg
http://i1229.photobucket.com/albums/ee469/andersman02/DSCF1187_zpsd4898ef7.jpg
http://i1229.photobucket.com/albums/ee469/andersman02/DSCF1185_zpsafde02b2.jpg

Sorry dont have any better pics of that side

S&MLL
09-24-2012, 01:17 AM
Transformer looks bad being on the front of the house. And lift it off the ground if you want to satisfy nec

irrig8r
09-24-2012, 11:08 AM
And as an aside, who plants a tree under the eaves like that? Looks like they're asking for trouble in a few short years.

andersman02
09-24-2012, 05:47 PM
homeowner wanted to keep it near the entrance, the hydrangeas should block it in a year... as for the trees, they shouldnt get much taller and they will be pruning it to keep shape, the original ones were a smaller cutlivar but they didnt have any in stock unfortunatly

S&MLL
09-25-2012, 03:41 AM
homeowner wanted to keep it near the entrance, the hydrangeas should block it in a year... as for the trees, they shouldnt get much taller and they will be pruning it to keep shape, the original ones were a smaller cutlivar but they didnt have any in stock unfortunatly


Your job as a "professional" is to install the transformer in a location you see fit. I cant think of one reason a homeowner would want it in front of their house. They have no reason to ever open the transformer or need to access it on a hourly basis to be in such easy reach of it.... When you raise the transformer off the ground to the appropriate level it will take much longer for your bush to block it.

andersman02
09-25-2012, 12:43 PM
Alright, what would be the minimum height off the ground? Also how would you go about placing this ttransformer? Place on the right side of the house?
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starry night
09-25-2012, 02:55 PM
Andersman, If you are going to continue to do lighting jobs, you ought to check the NEC code. It is very detailed. For simplified guidelines (still based on the code) go to the AOLP website where you can download a several-page guide to best practices.

andersman02
09-25-2012, 05:39 PM
Thanks starry night ill definately take a hard look over the winter
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muddywater
09-26-2012, 10:54 PM
I dont have the vast amount of lighting knowledge some of these guys do, but i would have tried to sell architectual lighting on the house. Just not much to light up in the front as far as specimen plants IMO.

And if you want to sell more lighting jobs, you need a nice camera. I bought one that was recomended on this forum and it takes incredible pics compared t what i was using. It has really been a great sales tool.

andersman02
09-26-2012, 11:33 PM
The guy is a friend (son of old boss) so i can still definately add on to it, the only problem is he didnt want to put in a conduit under the sidewalk, woulld some down light look nice? I was just thinking if we down light the right side, the left would look left out... Maybe something subtle?
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LLC RI
09-27-2012, 05:54 PM
Andersman....

If you go online and search Flexi Drills or Canada Flexi Drills, you'll find some tool companies who sell these products.. What you ( and others too) might want to get is their 72 inch long x 5/8 or 3/4 masonry flexi bit.

Above you are talking about the guy not wanting to put a conduit under the walk... WHY?... imagine if you could get a 6 foot long drill bit and simply bore a small hole under the walk in the gravel/sand below, and pull your wire through very simply?

We do this all the time and it's a huge time saver and with just a hole one one side of the walk and a narrow trench a couple of feet out on the other side, it s a minimally invasive method to cross a narrow walkway.

S&MLL
09-27-2012, 10:35 PM
Just be sure to be 18" under ground as per nec when going under a walkway
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muddywater
09-27-2012, 11:00 PM
Just be sure to be 18" under ground as per nec when going under a walkway
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What is the reasoning behind that? Sounds ret@rted to dig a 2' hole to get under a residential sidewalk.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
09-29-2012, 09:57 PM
The 18" is depth. According to code you must bury electrical cable to 18" below a sidewalk or driveway. (Although I am not sure if that code applies to extra low voltage cable - under 30V)

S&MLL
09-29-2012, 10:11 PM
In nj it does and im pretty sure its a nec thing...... yes 6 inches under the lawn but 18"under a walkway.


So much for all you flex bitters at 4"s haha
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muddywater
09-29-2012, 10:21 PM
In nj it does and im pretty sure its a nec thing...... yes 6 inches under the lawn but 18"under a walkway.


So much for all you flex bitters at 4"s haha
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That doesnt make ANY sense. That wire is just as safe 4" as 18". In fact under a sidewalk is probably the safest place in whole yard for a wire! Have fun diggin! Flex bit here i come!

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
09-29-2012, 10:37 PM
Muddy: 1 - How about you introduce yourself or put a proper signature line on your posts? It is a drag having to converse with a total stranger.

2 - Are you a pro or not? if you are a pro, then you had best be doing your installations in a professional manner and that includes following the applicable local, state and national codes.

Nothing puts a worse stain on this industry than those operators who convince customers to entrust them with their hard earned money, who then show up and install less than professional systems that either do not pass code requirements, prematurely fail, or do not deliver the performance and effect that was expected.

Do us all a favor; learn the regulations, guidelines, practices and codes and then put them into effect in all of your systems. You will be the better for it, for a long time to come.

P.S. No it does not make much sense, but it is not ours to challenge by bending the rules. Want to make a positive change? Join local and national organizations like the AOLP, IES, PLANET and others and then get on the committees that work to produce the guidelines and regulations that govern us.

muddywater
09-29-2012, 10:56 PM
Muddy: 1 - How about you introduce yourself or put a proper signature line on your posts? It is a drag having to converse with a total stranger.

2 - Are you a pro or not? if you are a pro, then you had best be doing your installations in a professional manner and that includes following the applicable local, state and national codes.

Nothing puts a worse stain on this industry than those operators who convince customers to entrust them with their hard earned money, who then show up and install less than professional systems that either do not pass code requirements, prematurely fail, or do not deliver the performance and effect that was expected.

Do us all a favor; learn the regulations, guidelines, practices and codes and then put them into effect in all of your systems. You will be the better for it, for a long time to come.

P.S. No it does not make much sense, but it is not ours to challenge by bending the rules. Want to make a positive change? Join local and national organizations like the AOLP, IES, PLANET and others and then get on the committees that work to produce the guidelines and regulations that govern us.

How many on here have there low voltage license?

It just doesnt make sense to go 18". It isnt any safer. When we install low voltage irrigation wire under a sidewalk to mount controller in garage it is a bore a few inches under sidewalk slab. Never had an incident in 1000 systems we have installed, and never will have an incident. 18" below the slab is 22"+... that is crazy for a low voltage wire... in my opinion.

And i know for a fact an inspector wouldnt even think about checking depth on a low voltage system. They are too lazy to even inpect a trench depth for 220v we install for electricians periodically. And that DOES need to be deep.

S&MLL
09-30-2012, 03:59 AM
How many on here have there low voltage license?

It just doesnt make sense to go 18". It isnt any safer. When we install low voltage irrigation wire under a sidewalk to mount controller in garage it is a bore a few inches under sidewalk slab. Never had an incident in 1000 systems we have installed, and never will have an incident. 18" below the slab is 22"+... that is crazy for a low voltage wire... in my opinion.

And i know for a fact an inspector wouldnt even think about checking depth on a low voltage system. They are too lazy to even inpect a trench depth for 220v we install for electricians periodically. And that DOES need to be deep.


Irrigation is 24volt systems, mechanics change batteries and work on 12volt cars all day long. Yet in NJ installing a 12volt landscape lighting system is against the law unless your have a electrical license. (not a low voltage, not a communication, not a data license..... A full blown ec.) Does it make any sense? Hell no. But its the law. Do I think its dumb and silly....... of course. Have I also seen transformers melt down that have no secondary protection.... Of course. There is a certain company who offered stainless steel transformers when no circuit breakers or fuses and when things go bad ive seen taps melted to almost nothing. Remember that if you have a 20 amp breaker on the primary line it would take almost 250 amps (depending upon break manu) to trip the main line. There for you have 200 amps (of 12 volts) arching in a stainless steel case sometimes mounted on the home.



Some guys ruin it for all of us. Sometimes its crap installs. Sometimes its labor unions (NJ) but whatever the case the law is the law. If you have to break to law to get the install done its 1 of 2 things. Either A. Your not charging enough for your service to do it right the first time. Or B. Your to incompetent as a professional to know what your doing. Its your job to do things the right way. If the homeowner questions your price its now your job to inform them why your price is your price.

As a side not calling you incompetent ( Idk who you are)....... Most of us on here take this very very seriously. We are not jack of all trades. We do lighting 100 percent as a profession. So regardless of how "******ed" laws might be its our duty to follow them

muddywater
09-30-2012, 09:15 AM
So do you have your full blown electrical license?
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S&MLL
09-30-2012, 11:24 AM
So do you have your full blown electrical license?
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No Sir. Just pay a boatload of money to have my ec on retainer

muddywater
09-30-2012, 11:44 AM
No Sir. Just pay a boatload of money to have my ec on retainer

Well it seems that you choose to follow the rules that suit you as well.

And I don't think there is anything wrong with that.

Richie@
09-30-2012, 12:29 PM
How many on here have there low voltage license?

It just doesnt make sense to go 18". It isnt any safer. When we install low voltage irrigation wire under a sidewalk to mount controller in garage it is a bore a few inches under sidewalk slab. Never had an incident in 1000 systems we have installed, and never will have an incident. 18" below the slab is 22"+... that is crazy for a low voltage wire... in my opinion.

And i know for a fact an inspector wouldnt even think about checking depth on a low voltage system. They are too lazy to even inpect a trench depth for 220v we install for electricians periodically. And that DOES need to be deep.

Muddywater , Answers to most of your questions can be read at this Link.

http://www.iaei.org/magazine/2004/11/low-voltage-lighting-systems-operating-at-30-volts-or-less/

muddywater
09-30-2012, 12:34 PM
Muddywater , Answers to most of your questions can be read at this Link.

http://www.iaei.org/magazine/2004/11/low-voltage-lighting-systems-operating-at-30-volts-or-less/

Yeah I read that article when I did a google search last night. And it does say that 12v wire needs to be 6" underground... even though I have never ever seen anyone put it 6" underground in a planting bed or natural area.


I have yet to find a NEC download to read through yet.

Richie@
09-30-2012, 12:36 PM
You probably would have to pay for a down load.

Richie@
09-30-2012, 12:40 PM
Also you can go to Mike Holts NEC code forum and find answers.

burial, depths

http://forums.mikeholt.com/search.php?searchid=898874

muddywater
09-30-2012, 12:42 PM
Well for the betterment of the industry as some have said, why doesn't one the nec advocators get the nec guidlines posted to the sticky notes?

Or does anyone actually have a copy of the nec guidelines?

muddywater
09-30-2012, 12:45 PM
Also you can go to Mike Holts NEC code forum and find answers.

burial, depths

http://forums.mikeholt.com/search.php?searchid=898874

This post is interesting. Says there is no direct burial depth for low voltage class 2 or 3 wire.

http://forums.mikeholt.com/showthread.php?t=125143&highlight=burial+depths

Richie@
09-30-2012, 12:50 PM
You can purchase an NEC code book at Barnes and Noble or most Electrical supply companies.

muddywater
09-30-2012, 01:05 PM
I just bought the NEC app for $10 for my ipad. It is a 08 app but I would think it is still good for what we are doing anyway.

The people advocating NEC don't even know the rules!!

Under minimum of 102-mm (4-in.) thick concrete exterior slab with no vehicular traffic and the slab extending not less than 152mm (6-in) beyond the underground installation. ----------------------> can be installed 4" under slab

Richie@
09-30-2012, 01:11 PM
We are still under the 2008

starry night
09-30-2012, 01:14 PM
............ needs to be 6" underground... even though I have never ever seen anyone put it 6" underground in a planting bed or natural area.

You apparently haven't been watching the right people.

muddywater
09-30-2012, 01:14 PM
I am not sure about transformer height. All I can find on transformer height and width is work space requirement of 3'x3'.

muddywater
09-30-2012, 01:16 PM
You apparently haven't been watching the right people.

What is your code number that specifies what depth they need to be?

GreenLight
09-30-2012, 01:22 PM
Im not going to tell anyone how to run their business, but I will chime in and say I have never once seen a complete low voltage system that would have passed NEC code. This applies to more than just low voltage outdoor lighting.

Richie@
09-30-2012, 01:47 PM
I've seen so much jack leg wiring over the years it would blow your mind , both Line Voltage and LV and a lot of it done by home owners , Imagine putting your family and home at risk.

S&MLL
09-30-2012, 02:31 PM
Hopefully one of our ec boys will step in here to do some nec decoding. But if not tuesday ill have the book infront of me
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S&MLL
09-30-2012, 02:32 PM
Muddy look up height of any outdoor jbox with receptacle transformer falls under similar height regulations
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RLI Electric
10-01-2012, 11:47 PM
Table 300.5 (Column 5) We are still in 2005 in CT.