Stuff in my Way

There’s stuff in my way, get out of my way I want to yell in a Grandpa-Simpson voice. The additional electrical items that the inspector has asked me to do are turning out to be a real pain. Let’s start with the “back” of the kitchen. You may remember this little area from our 1st day of demo.

Behind this area is the stairs, down to the basement and also up to the second floor. Because of the stairs, underneath each of those three walls is a doubled up joist that is the exact width of the wall. That means to get wiring into this wall from the basement I have to notch out these important joists, something you have to be careful doing and I don’t want to do.
Double Joists in the Way
In this area will be our pantry cabinet and the fridge.
I am taking care of power for the fridge by using raceway to run the wires.

Non-Metallic Raceway

Image courtesy

I think this stuff is kinda ugly and I wouldn’t put it over my counter tops or in a living room. But it will be hidden behind the fridge. You screw it to the wall and it protects the cables from physical damage. The other thing that needs to go in that wall, on the other side, is a light switch for the kitchen. Our side entrance is through the door next to that area and there is no switch to turn the lights on in the kitchen there. You have to go through the kitchen to hit the switch in the doorway leading to the dining room. We are adding a switch for a three-way arrangement. In addition there is a switch for the basement lights that I have been meaning to rewire (it has no ground). I am going to have to get the wires to the switches though the attic, which means cutting holes in the wall to fish wires through. 🙁

My next task was to install the ceiling boxes for our new lights. The entire 21 foot long kitchen only has one light fixture. You want lots of light in a kitchen. It’s good to be able to see what you are cutting for example. So we are adding two additional light fixtures. Where the fan is currently does not make sense for the new layout so that fixture will be moving as well. To locate the lights I split the kitchen into three even parts along the long side. Then I located a fixture in the middle of those zones. I sketched all of this out in AutoCAD and figured out far each fixture was from the wall. As it turns out the middle fixture was just a few inches from being centered on the range so I moved it to be on the center.

Next I measured along both long walls the length I needed to each fixture. I connected the two marks by snapping a chalk line. Then I measured out the center of that chalk line.
Chalk Line for Light Fixture
If you just put your tape in the middle of the short wall and try to measure out to where the fixture is you could be at an angle to the long walls and thus the light won’t be centered. I drilled a small hole (1/8″) where my mark is and inserted a spare piece of grounding wire through it. Then I went up into the attic and looked for the wire with a flashlight. Got that idea from my Creative Homeowner’s Ultimate Guide to Wiring. Unfortunately one light fixture will be underneath this set of cabinets the previous owner built in the attic.
Cabinets in Way
And in the way of another light fixture is this junction box.
Junction Box in Way
Oh bother! I can’t wait until this electrical stuff is done.

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