Romex question

  1. Can romex be directly attached to a disposer?
  2. Can romex be attached to a plug (is there an approved plug)?

Having trouble finding the answers via Google.


Answers :

1.) Question # 1 - Depends on who you ask. If the romex is subject to physical damage and not run with the contours of the building then it should be sleeved and protected ( whips have some exceptions as well ). Personally if it is run with the contour of the plumbing and is not hanging down I would probably not harp on it too much…but thats me ( I see gray sometimes )

If they want to be safer…sleeve it in some liquidtight for a little added protection.

2.) No, Romex should not be connected to an attachment plug for the intent you are speaking about. It is not considered cord or flexible cord ( ie: SO and SJ cord for example )

**Attachment Plug (Plug Cap) (Plug). **A device that, by insertion in a receptacle,
establishes a connection between the conductors of the attached flexible cord and the
conductors connected permanently to the receptacle.

Best thing for them to do is take that Romex into a BOX mounted on the surface and buy a 4’ listed and approved Disposal Cord and Plug set and use that…then plug it into the newly mounted receptacle.

I call it out as “sub standard” installation. Romex is not designed or intended to be a flexable cord. Upgrades recommended by a qualified trades person.

What, why and how.

Thanks for the info,

I sometimes see romex run straight to a disposer. I write it up but never really knew a source to back me up.

I write up a plug on romex however I saw one today that really looked like it was intended for the romex. A nicely done connection. I wrote it up as usual but still wondered.

I know the disposer manufacturers allow direct connections and they are made up in a j box. The switch is considered the disconnecting means.

Yep…except if they try to use a decora “ROCKER” switch which has no On/Off actually on the switch.

Faster to carry a magic marker than write it up. :smiley:

Interesting point Paul. Personally I still like the idea of cord and plug connected disposals and dishwashers. If you order them that way it is only a couple bucks more, cheaper than buying a plug and 3 feet of romex. Legal too.


I am with you fella, I install all mine with a cord and plug on it and place a receptacle under the sink for each of these items. Both of which get a single plug ( 20A ) and just makes for a nice and neat install.

And you are so correct…a legal one to boot…:wink:

May I clarify. I am still a bit in the dark.

Is attaching the romex directly to a dishwasher allowed?
Is attaching the romex directly to a disposer allowed?

I understand the preferred method of a cord and receptacle. I also know there are regional variations.

Romex direct to disposal or dishwasher can be okay if not subjected to physical damage but don’t connect an attachment plug to romex in order to plug it into a receptacle.

Thanks. . . . I think I have it now.

Here that translates to: exposed in the house anywhere, lower than 7’ high in a shed or on the patio, exposed to direct sunlight.

Your reccomended serving suggestions may depend on your regional tastes, please consult your personal physican before adjusting your milage

This has always been a grey area. A strict reading of the code says you can’t run exposed Romex unless it closely follows the building surface. Flying arcoss under a sink base can hardly fit that description but is a handy place to hang the windex sprayer. :frowning:
In that regard, coming out the drain bezel in the drywall and tywrapped to the pipe is probably more code compliant than anything else I can think of.

Good point…I’ll try to stay with “around here”.:smiley:

Like this Greg?

What about the idea that it should be installed as per manufacturer’s instructions? But then, who knows the mfg’s instructions? :roll:

AS greg stated…it can vary depending on the AHJ who looks at it. Personally, if they run the NMC along the drain pipe and secure it neatly I would probably not harp on it too much, but I would suggest they consider the box and proper plug option because if the have the romex coming through the wall anyway…adding a surface mount box would not be brain surgery to do it right and get a properly listed cord and plug for the disposal and dishwasher.
If we stick to the letter of the NEC it is not allowed but is done all the time so it really depends on how enforce worthy the AHJ is…I know I did fail one at one time because it was drooping down and quite sloppy so they tie wrapped it up and I said fine…lessor of two evils…

Personally the complaint way is mount a box and use a proper listed cord and plug setup from the units to the surface mounted receptacle box.

Screw the NEC, I am sure the UPC does not allow drains to be used as electrical supports.

If it looks farked up it most likley is. The NEC does not specify this type of install , but it it should be obvious that it is sub standerd and needs repair.

Just write it up and forget about it.:cool:

That would be a shocking experience!:shock: