Senior Member
I have had two symptoms pop up, that I think I have an idea what might have caused it but was hoping someone might be able to validate my thinking:

The symptoms:
1. I have recieved a few instances where the panel put out an 1130 FAIL TO COMMUNICATE TROUBLE related to the smokes and then a fire alarm (but nothing from the detectors themselves). These were working fine for a few months. I originally thought perhaps I caused an issue as I was working on the wiring in the garage, but I did not touch this wire and was on the other side of the room. I then also thought perhaps severe rain introduced something with how the cable was run, but everything started working again.
2. Instances of being dropped offline when playing some online games went up drastically. This was through connections that have been in place for a few years.

After trying to establish why these changed and didn't relate these two items until recently, I remembered that the electrician ran new circuits to break up the house wiring better.

I didn't watch how he did it, and was dissappointed later as he ran the wiring across some of my other lv wiring. It was crossing as it should in one place, but was parallell in another case.

My thought: Could it be possible that the proximity of the electrical lines is causing these issues?

My possible solution: Would it make sense to put that wiring in metal conduit for short distances (a few feet where they cross/run together) but not the entire run? That should, from what I understand remove the possible impact of this having any effect. Is it against code or anything to only run in conduit for short distances and not an entire leg?

Any thoughts would be appreciated, I've heard many comments on not running electrical wiring close to LV but not many on the actual effects.

If you pull any more LV wire try and use shielded wire to minimize the AC Induction. In my house I admit I did not adhere to the code perfectly as far as spacing between LV and AC wiring. Enough that it is safe. Since I used sheilded wiring I am not seeing problems. My noise problems are on the lighting end which is all AC and not LV.

I assume you meant put the LV wiring into the conduit. You cant put the AC wiring into the conduit as easily since there are many requirements in the code. I have seen people "sleeve" romex with conduit and that is not acceptable since it is not designed for that and you could have heating issues etc.

You mention that you see the internet drop out also? I have seen this to recently and we live very close to each other. It may be Cablevision since they made changes to their systems recently.
Thank you.

Good to know on the changes to cablevision, the two may very well have nothing in common.

I had run 5 sets of metal conduit for LV but havent put anything in there yet. I was planning on moving the smoke wiring up to the attic into one of them.

Good to know on the 'sleeving' conduit around romex. You mentioned it was not designed for that, which I thought I have seen romex run inside EMT (which is what I was referring to for the electrical wiring) if everything is connected. In fact I have some examples of it in my basement I think. Were you talking about just using conduit for a section being 'wrong'? I wasn't quite following the heating issues.

I'm also trying to pull out the wiring in question this weekend and examine it. My first symptom happened the night of the huge rainstorm (which originally led me to believe the wire might be getting stressed somehow that I was not seeing. When it began working again that did not seem to make as much sense. What has had me perplexed was why it did not work for awhile then came back on (I neglected to include that earlier). All smoke detectors were not blinking and then they later began blinking again (this made me suspect the leg of wiring from the panel to the first detector).

Well I went back and checked the logs on the router and it seems the dropouts were related to the servers I was connecting to (referenced bad packets, of course then again isnt that what interference would cause?) and it seem isolated to a group of specific IP addresses.

I can move the electrical wiring over I think so it does not run in the same holes as the original LV I had run (I was surprised he did this and only noticed it later).
The insulation used for Romex was not really made to be enclosed in conduit if I remember correctly (the heating effect could damage the insulation). Ask an electrician but I think you need THHN type wire in the conduit. I am not an expert on this but check with one before you do it so you dont have problems.
BraveSirRobbin said:
Digger is correct;

You can't run "romex" type wire inside conduit.
I have seen lots of installations where an electrcian will run romex from the rafters of a garage or basement through a short vertical run of conduit to a surface mount box on a concrete wall. Something in the code about vertical runs of surface wiring must be enclosed in conduit or raceway to prevent damage from shelving or other items stored against the wall?
I think the code is that you cannot have non metalic sheathed cable (Romex type which is a brand) exposed where it is subject to physical abuse.

The transition from "romex" to conduit should be with an electrical box and the wire should be changed at that point to a type that is suitable for use in conduit.

Again I am not an expert but you may wish to check into this further before you proceed
Digger said:
I think the code is that you cannot have non metalic sheathed cable (Romex type which is a brand) exposed where it is subject to physical abuse.

The transition from "romex" to conduit should be with an electrical box and the wire should be changed at that point to a type that is suitable for use in conduit.

Again I am not an expert but you may wish to check into this further before you proceed
I'm not saying it meets code. I just note that electricians commonly make the transition with nothing more than a romex connector that fits on the end of the conduit.
I agree that many electricians do things that do not meet code. I also agree that just because something doesn't meet code doesn't mean it is definitely unsafe. However, in this case...... I would personally be hesitant on putting romex inside conduit (maybe if its significantly derated ok).

We used to travel to Straussburg PA all of the time (where all of the neat train stuff is). There is a resturant there (near the hotel that is made out of railroad cars) that has romex wiring running down the wall and through a baseboard heater to the other side of the mens bathroom. If its still there is been there for about 7 or 8 years now that I know of. I seriously doubt that it meets code (I would bet money that it doesn't) but its there. So far I guess the building has not burned down and that nobody has been electrocuted. If it was me....... I would rip it out and put it all in conduit with the proper wire. Yet maybe 10 years from now it will still be there and nobody will be dead from it.

Code is a guideline...... not a bible written in stone. I TRY and meet it when practical and always when it involves safety.
Thank you again, I was not aware of this. I am going to move the line so it is run up into the attic a few feet to the right of the LV wiring. The other line the cuts it perpendicular, I will leave as is. If I still have issues I guess I would need to add another electrical box, switch to THHN and run conduit horizontally to the outlet. I'm hoping it does not get to that.

Also I will revisit my plans once I get the fire wire out and see if there is any indication of damage (somehow I suspect I will not be that lucky). It seems the internet issue was unrelated and if I rerun the firewire in the new conduit, even if the electrical lines were an issue the conduit should help protect me. Running a new line of firewire removes that leg as an issue as well and hopefully resolves my problem.
Ok I finally had some time off and went to replace the wiring to the attic, and I think I found the issue.

(This is what I suspect, if anyone has opinions on if this makes sense, chime in please) When I had an electrician run metal conduit to the attic for LV wiring, he bolted down the 5 metal conduits (1 inch I think) on top of my fire wire for the smoke detectors. I am guessing that the pressure was not 'critical' but when it rained for long periods of time, the wood beneath it expanded and must have compressed it somehow to temporarily cause this. Then when the the wood dried out it allowed the signal to go through again.

I replaced the run, this time running it inside the new conduit and I will see if the issue repeats.
Re: Romex inside conduit.

We had an electrical inspection on a house two weeks ago, and the code-enforcement officer MADE us put some of the romex inside conduit.

The situation was that some walls were cinder-block, with one-inch furring strips to enclose the insulation and to hold the sheet-rock. We had originally run the romex down from the ceiling, along the furring strips, to the outlet boxes near the floor.

The code-enforcement officer said that the romex was too close to the sheet-rock, and had to be "armored" to prevent nails from picture hangers or other wall mounts from piercing the romex (the minimum clearance is 1.5", I believe). He instructed us to remove the romex from the box, in order to slide 1/2-inch conduit over it, up through where it transitions into the ceiling (the conduit then had to be caulked).

The length of the conduit is only 6' 8" (box centers are 15" from the floor), and is enclosed with a furring strip on one side, the cinder-block wall behind, Styrofoam insulation on the other side, and sheet-rock in front. The enforcement officer approved it, and did not require that we de-rate it at all (12/2 romex on 20 amp breakers).
From what I am aware of the code the inspector was correct that you need to have wiring in a metallic sheath or in conduit in the application you describe.

Having Romex type wire in the conduit I do not think is acceptable and you might want to investigate it further. See if you know a licensed electrician you can check with. Obviously if you call one they will say its no good since they will want to correct it and charge you (unless you find a really honest one and they are out there).

Not saying I know everything but I am pretty sure you cannot put Romex inside conduit so you may want to pursue this. Not all inspectors know everything either.

Worst case if there was a problem it would probably not be a hazard.

One question for you. How did you connect the conduit to the electrical ground (exposed dead metal, meaning non energized metal, such as conduit, shall be connected to ground).

The reason I ask is that should there be a problem and the "hot" conductor becomes in contact with the conduit you do not want to touch the conduit and get a shock. If it (the conduit) is connected to the electrical ground then the circuit breaker would trip if that type of fault were to happen.
Yes, I forgot to mention about the grounding. The inspector was very specific about that.

The outlet boxes were metal. He wanted the romex clamps on the box replaced with conduit clamps and the ground wire from the romex had to be connected to the box. He tested the conduit's ground on the final rough inspection.
Glad to see that the grounding is there.

I still think that the romex is a concern in the conduit. DONT LOSE SLEEP OVER IT but if you can maybe check with a professional..........

I always like to be safe than sorry. I believe others agree with me that it is a concern but majority does not mean correct necessarily.