Codes & Standards


Essential to the work of the electrical contractor is knowledge of the National Electrical Code, the National Electrical Installation Standards and additional standards and codes administered by the National Fire Protection Association, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and others. Here is a list of all our articles on codes and standards listed chronologically by issue date. 

Article 210 in the National Electrical Code (NEC) covers branch circuits, with the exception of circuits that supply motor loads only. Article 430 covers these branch circuits, and Part II covers motor-circuit conductors.

A reader wrote in that an inspector had turned down one of his projects, citing the installation was in violation of National Electrical Code (NEC) 517.13(A) and (B) because Type MC cable was installed in the patient-care areas.

Jim Dollard has an extensive background in codes and standards. If you have a query about the National Electrical Code (NEC), Jim will help you solve it. Questions can be sent to Answers are based on the 2014 NEC.
 Kitchen countertop receptacle height

Many of the articles I write for ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR originate as questions from people who read my columns or attend my workshops.

More on Codes & Standards

Carbon Monoxide Detection

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas that in sufficient concentrations, can threaten life.

Sizing Conductors, Part XI

One of the most-referenced tables in the National Electrical Code (NEC) is Table 310.15(B)(16), formerly Table 310.16. It contains allowable ampacities of insulated copper and aluminum (or copper-clad aluminum) conductors rated up to and including 2,000 volts (V).

The Shady Side of PVs
by Staff |

A friend of mine called with questions about overcurrent protection for direct current (DC) output of photovoltaic (PV) modules, the DC output of combiner boxes, the location of disconnects for both DC side and the alternating current (AC) side of an inverter, and sizing conductors on both sides.

Here's Your Sign

While teaching codes and standards across the United States, the question often arises why the National Electrical Code (NEC) incorporates so many requirements for signage. For example, orange has historically served as a warning to electrical personnel.

Loop Length, Underground Feeders and More

If you have a problem related to the National Electrical Code (NEC), are experiencing difficulty in understanding a Code requirement, or are wondering why or if such a requirement exists, ask Charlie, and he will let the Code decide. Questions can be sent to

Not as Easy as It Looks

The term “integrated systems” has appeared to some of us in the field to represent secret meaning for saving money by combining systems.

How Many Is Too Many?
by Staff |

With the proliferation of electrical and electronic medical equipment in general care or critical care patient bed locations of a hospital, the number of branch circuits necessary to supply the equipment and the number of receptacles on these branch circuits becomes a real dilemma.