Most homeowners spend a lot of time in their garages, which usually aren’t solely reserved for cars. Garages can contain a variety of other things, from an additional freezer to an entire workshop. Because of that, wiring that particular part of a house or introducing any changes to an existing set of wires might get quite complicated or even dangerous. One loose wire might cause a bunch of problems, from flickering lights to starting a fire.
However, there are many preventive measures you can take to stop such issues from ever happening. Such precautions can include buying high-quality tools and materials or hiring a professional electrician, depending on how much money you are willing to spend. Even if you aren’t financially equipped to really invest in your garage, there are always some small improvements that you might find affordable. It would be best if you looked into all of the options that are available to you, from checking out different brands of certain tools to comparing their prices in a few different stores. It’s an extremely beneficial and reasonable thing to do, especially if you are on a tight budget.
Buying the Right Resources
Getting your hands on high-quality materials and appliances is the first step you can take to make your wiring more reliable. Nowadays, you can buy most of them, from small objects, such as sets of nails and cable clamps, to larger ones, such as drills and even garage doors online. Because of that, you can conveniently get all the things you need for your garage without even leaving your house.
You should equip yourself with absolute essentials if you don’t have them already – a proper screwdriver, a cordless drill, a hammer, and a wire cutter. Other than that, you will definitely need cable and stacker staples, electrical boxes, cables, conduits, and fittings. Buying these materials ahead of time will save you from last-minute shopping trips, which can be a real pain in the neck. Remember to buy such things in reputable stores or from trustworthy sellers. It might not be the cheapest option, but you can be sure that their products are compliant with your country’s safety regulations and won’t potentially put you in harm’s way.
Plan Things Out
When it comes to electrical installations, you need to consider the placement of each and every cable very carefully. If you want to leave the walls and ceilings open, you shouldn’t end up with wires that span across open ceiling joists and stud spaces. It makes the cables more susceptible to accidental damage from sharp gardening tools, among other things.
If you want to do it right, treat the framing spaces in your garage like guides for where the cables should be located. Making sure that the wires hug these places closely and tightly will prevent them from sagging. As a result, damaging them will be much harder, and they will look neat and organized. There is one downside to this method, though. If you ever want to close up your garage walls with drywall, you will have to rewire the whole garage from scratch. Other than that, it’s a pretty cost-effective and practical approach to wiring.
Nailing up the Electrical Boxes, Running the Wires
If you have already come up with a reasonable wiring scheme, you should nail up all of your electrical boxes. Run the cable from one box to another, but remember to staple it to the framing at least every 4 feet to keep it from sagging. Moreover, all wires should be kept at least 1-¼ inches from the front and back surfaces of studs and joints.
Depending on the number of cables you need to run, certain types of garage framing will require you to run cables next to each other or even stack them. To do the latter, you will need to use stacker staples. They might be harder to get than regular staples, but it shouldn’t be that big of an issue if you end up online shopping for supplies. Quite a few garages have at least one wall that’s made out of concrete or one that’s already been drywalled. The wires on such walls should be protected by either EMT or PVC conduit.
All in all, wiring your garage is pretty challenging. You can’t just jump into it without proper preparation, skills, and resources. However, it can be done quite efficiently with the right attitude. Remember to focus on trying not to cut any corners. It will only hurt you in the long run by decreasing the quality and longevity of your wiring. If you end up not being able to do it yourself, hiring a qualified professional is always a viable option. It might be a better one as well, especially if you often find yourself short on time and energy or need to have it done on short notice.