Exterior outlet height

What is the heigth requirement for outdoor outlets? This one doesn’t seem right :shock: Thanks.

DSCF0182 copy.JPG

I don’t know of any code…because I don’t know the code like some do here.

But, my common sense code says this is wrong…dirt contains moisture, grade this high will allow moisture into receptacle…how can this be right.

Lacking a code reference, and myself I don’t need to cite code, nor do I want to…I would simply say the outdoor receptacle is below grade and unsafe…blah blah blah…

IRC states maximum height only…

E3801.7 …not more than 6 feet 6 inches above grade.

With this particular install, I’d write it up as being too low to grading. You’d think the electrician would have added an elbow and brought this junction box at least three feet above grade.

I’m bettin’ an ‘electrician’ didn’t do this…:slight_smile:

Hmmmmm…I actually had a comment but I will keep it personal…If the box was truly Weather Proof then the height of this is not a problem because it would be protected by GFCI anyway.

As for the height comments…their are plenty of receptacles located under a roofs soffit to supply snow melting systems and so on…

Switches have height requirments…receptacles are a different story and many examples can be posted…

I would say a definite write-up. Judging by the duct tape wrapped around the box…not too weather proof…the receptical itself does not look to be a GFCI (but it could be connected to a GFCI breaker???). Another thing is that the conduit has seen better days…I don’t think it would be overstepping if you, at a minimum, advise a qualified electrician take a closer look at it in the report to cover your end, as it does not look to be too safe by the picture.

Would it make to much sense to recommend that the receptacle be installed at the standard height of 18"-24", so that it is functionable?
At this height above grade and after a years time, the spring that holds the caps on corrode and do not close, and guess what?, if it is a GFCI it will trip from just the moisture.

Write it as you see it. If you question the normal use of things that are strange, question and recommend further evaluation.


:slight_smile: :slight_smile:

Thats my point…the HI call is the Duct Tape…not the style of install as if it is in a weather proof box it is allowed…the Duct Tape is a dead giveaway that it is a concern because it is broken or defective product that is not being used as its intended purpose.

You can recommend anything on height…Just be ready to back it up when the buyers asked the seller to change it and they call in an electrician who says…It does not have to be raised…

This is my POINT…understanding Code ( which is safety based ) helps explain this so to not make the HI look like a uneducated A$$ to the professional trade person who may look at the request…

If you offer ANY advice to a home owner…know about what you speak before you speak it…sound fair enough…:slight_smile:

P.S. Remember the GFCI listing on the 6’ 1/2" has to do with from grade to be GFCI…the receptacle at the Soffit which is for lets say a heating strip does not have to be GFCI…and it can be any height…:slight_smile:

Thanks Guys-

It was not a GFCI (not protected by one either) and definitley the work of Harry Homeowner. I’m gonna go with a Sparky Eval. of the system anyway - lots of this type of thing. I appreciate the help.