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Is pig-tailing aluminum wiring required for light fixtures?

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Posted by: from Kitchener
5/14/2016 at 11:28:17 PM

I have aluminum wiring in my home and a contractor suggested pig-tailing the outlets. Is it also necessary to do the same with the light fixtures?

REPLIES (5)
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Mirek from Mirek Electric in Mississauga
Date/Time5/15/2016 at 6:48:09 AM

Light fixtures should be inspected and proper copper to aluminum connectors should be used.

Also in some cases constant power is traveling through the light boxes and those connectors should be checked or replace.

I would recommend adding copper tails for practical reasons and easier future fixture replacements.

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Robert from Electrilight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time5/15/2016 at 7:42:36 AM

Pigtailing is required for ALL devices, receptacles, switches, smoke detectors, lighting (inside and out). The lighting job is sometimes not easy to remove the light fixtures, or get access to them (20' ceiling), but from what I have seen, more problems lie within lighting joints, switches, and receptacles that are done with cheap copper wire nuts... These connections MUST BE aluminum approved wire nuts (marrette brand #63 or #65). all joints should have paste, even though code only requires stranded aluminum wires (#8 or larger) or smaller light fixture wires.

P.S. The aluminum wire for the receptacle ground is also required to be changed to copper, 99% of electricians fail to replace that one.

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Ivana in Kitchener
Date/Time5/15/2016 at 10:23:45 AM

Thanks for the reply, guys! Much appreciated.

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Jeff from JRG Electric Ltd in Surrey
Date/Time5/15/2016 at 3:29:02 PM

It is necessary to pigtail all aluminum wire with copper tails, properly rated wire caps and an approved oxide inhibiting compound.

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Matthew from M.L Electric in Calgary
Date/Time5/16/2016 at 9:17:02 AM

Most of the time with a fixture you would be using a pig tail style connection anyways because the fixture would come with wires also.

But the reason you would pig tail a cross over on receptacles is for the strength of the connections under the screw and or the push in on the back of the receptacle. They are ment for copper.

You do not need the pig tail. You only need the one connection and just use marrets

M.L electric

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