Doorbell double-taps?

David Cook “In some areas the ESA will allow a soft (doorbell transformer) to be under the same screw as a hard wire.”


I haven’t heard this before, but it makes sense. I always report the doorbell double-tap, but often wonder if it requires rework in a case where there are no other issues. My thinking is that it was allowed at the time of construction, and has been that way for 20 years in many cases. Any objections?

John Kogel


The second picture shows the tap on a double 15A breaker, breaker services two general room circuits, outlets and lights. Any objections?

My favorite one below, double-tap and a solid Al pigtail with an ordinary wire nut to lengthen the copper neutrals . :cool:
(That other wire is a flexible cord from the fireplace fan which is nearby, who needs a junction box?)

That is a code violation. Breaker not rated for 2 wires. An Issue?, you decide.

At least your transformers are mounted on the outside of the panel. I aways find them laying on the inside.

In my area I find this consistantly on old and NEW construction. It a double tap, but it’s also allowed by local authorites.

I doubt you will find a breaker listed for anything smaller than 14. What is the wire size of a doorbell transformer lead?

About #18? But it is tucked in with a #14, in most cases.

Multi strand #18 or so? But it is tucked in with a #14, in most cases.

If it is really 16 or 18 you can’t connect it to the breaker in any way. You have to pigtail it.

Is there a reason other than code violation? Is there a shock hazard? I doubt it. Loose branch connection could possibly be a fire hazard. I wonder how a pigtail connection makes it safer? There is still potential for a loose, hot connection, and now you’ve added a flammable wire nut. :roll:

The breaker lists the wire sizes it can successfully terminate. If the wire is too small they are saying it may not be a good connection particularly if you have 2 wires. Pigtailing a compliant wire increases the chance you will get a good connection.