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IC Boxes for Recessed Lights

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Posted by: from Winnipeg
4/18/2012 at 5:18:28 PM

I am in Winnipeg, and am wondering if it is still acceptable to install 5/8" Type X drywall into a joist cavity and seal it with fire caulking, instead of purchasing metal boxes?

I am trying to save money and drywalling is part of my trade and I have access to limitless amounts.

REPLIES (5)
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Robert from Electrilight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time4/18/2012 at 6:48:02 PM

You still need vapour barrier, and as long as the insulation stays away 10" and there is room for airflow to keep the pots cool, you should be fine. How big are you planning to make the boxes?

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Toney in Winnipeg
Date/Time4/19/2012 at 5:58:02 PM

This is in my basement, I shouldn't need a vapor barrier for that. And I was thinking on just the 3 1/2" pots with drywall boxes surrounding them. Which would be from joist to joist, and equal size all around... So, 10 1/2" x 10 1/2" x 7 1/2" (joists are 2x8).

I heard I would have to have an air space above the box with no insul.

Is this correct?

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Robert from Electrilight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time4/19/2012 at 8:49:20 PM

You didn't mention your basement. You only require IC type boxes (IC = Insulated Ceiling) around insulation, non-IC or open frame are used around joists and no need for fire barrier.

Post a pic of what you are asking to put in as your question is not really clear.

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Toney in Winnipeg
Date/Time4/19/2012 at 9:25:52 PM

I don't have a picture to show, because it is only open, unfinished ceiling in my basement.

What I am trying to get across is that I am going to be installing pot lights into my joist cavities in my basement. I would like to insulate within the cavities so, unless I purchase non-IC pot lights, I would need a fire box. I want to know if I am allowed to use 5/8" Type X drywall instead of a metal fire box that can be purchased at any big box hardware store. My joists are spaced 12" apart and are made from 2x8 lumber. I would like to cut the drywall to fit within my joists and create a sealed box around each pot light. I would use fire caulking and metal tape. The dimensions of the box would be about 10 1/2" x 10 1/2" x 7 1/2".

Is this still acceptable to do? Or do I have to purchase the actual boxes or enclosures to hold the pot lights? I am talking about code and not personal preference. I have tried to contact electricians and the Permit/ Inspections department in my city, but no one can give me an answer.

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Robert from Electrilight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time4/19/2012 at 10:05:29 PM

That is a building code rule. check the building code in your area, nothing in CEC code for fire proofing pot lights. We do not require anything in open air joists.

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