W. Creighton Schwan

Former Code Columnist

W. Creighton Schwan was a long-time contributor to ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine and an important figure in the electrical code world. His first article written for ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR was published in January 1980 issue. He wrote a total of 326 articles.

On December 16, 2006, Creigton died of a form of leukemia. He was at home with his family. For more, see this article.

Articles by W. Creighton Schwan

August 2004
Can a 20A receptacle be placed on a 15A circuit? A reader asks, “On a multioutlet circuit at 120V, I know that I can put a 15A receptacle on a 20A circuit, so why can I not put a 20A receptacle on a 15A circuit?” First, let’s look at 210.21(B)(3), which permits 15A receptacles on a 15A circuit and 15 or 20A receptacles on a 20A circuit. This dates back to the 1947 NEC. READ MORE
July 2004
Picture an electrician installing a load center (technically, a panelboard) on a 120/240V AC system at a location in the building remote from the service location. The electrician finds the bonding screw in an envelope, notes printed on the envelope say something about grounding, and the electrician thinks, “Grounding is good, therefore more grounding is better,” and installs the screw. READ MORE
June 2004
One of the most important NEC requirements (and yet one most often ignored) is 110.22: Identification of Disconnecting Means. It reads: “Each disconnecting means shall be legibly marked to indicate its purpose unless located and arranged so the purpose is evident. READ MORE
May 2004
It can keep you warm—or create a fire hazard “BUNDLE (bundled, bundling):To occupy the same bed without undressing, said of a man and woman, especially during courtship.” —Webster’s Dictionary. This practice was brought to the colonies from England, Wales, Scotland, Holland and Germany, and was widely followed in Pennsylvania, New England and some southern states until the early 20th century. READ MORE
April 2004
The problems with multiwire circuits On March 20, 1883, a U.S. Patent was issued to Thomas A. Edison for a three-wire distribution and branch circuit electrical system consisting of a neutral conductor having a voltage of 120 between it and each of two “hot” conductors with a voltage between them of 240. READ MORE
March 2004
In many conversations with electrical inspectors on the subject of arc-fault circuit-interrupters (AFCIs), I find them variously questioning, doubtful, confused, bewildered and puzzled concerning the application of 210.12. The most often expressed concern is that there have been many reports of AFCI failures. The next concern is statistical: how many fires will be prevented, and at what cost? READ MORE