Water in pool light junction box??

Tfastle

Active member
Mar 17, 2014
43
Albq. NM, United States
We are having a new pool put in with a raised spa. It is almost complete but a few details need to be finished up including getting the lights (Intellibrite color) going. I notice that there is water dripping (a rather constant and rapid drip) out of the light wire junction box. First I would like to know if this is a safety hazard and secondly if it's common. I did do some reading on it and gather that I likely have a wet niche light housings and suspect that it is ok for water to get into the conduit but am not positive. It sounds like the J-box needs to be mounted at least 8" above the water line. Ours is about 10" above the pool water line but that puts it about 10" below the spa water line. I am guessing that water is going from the spa light niche through the conduit and that the J-box should be 8" above the spa water level. Is this correct or am I off base? Is there something that should stop the water from getting into the conduit? Obviously I don't want water running out of the j-box constantly is moving it up the correct fix. Thanks!
 

JohnT

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
9,630
SW Indiana
Sounds like you are right to me. The box needs to be above the spa water line or the conduit acts as a drain for the spa.
 

Tfastle

Active member
Mar 17, 2014
43
Albq. NM, United States
Also, while on the subject, the builder put this J-box in a spot that is in the way and unsightly (I actually had him move it next to a stone wall but it's sill unsightly). He told me that it had to be within 20 feet of the pool and therefore could not be at the equipment pad, which is about 60' from the spa light. My guess is that the distance from the pool is not a factor (other than too close) and the limitation is on the length of wire on the light that was ordered. Is this correct or is there some code that says the j-box has to be within 20 feet of the pool? Also, what is the closest to the edge of the pool is can be? This one is at 3'. Thanks.
 

gwegan

TFP Expert
Apr 19, 2013
2,769
Sacramento, CA
Assuming we are not talking about low voltage lights, then the junction box must be 4 inches above the pool structure and 8 inches above the maximum water level. There is no restriction as to distance from the pool. Mine is more than 40 feet away. As you noted the limiting factor is how long a cord is attached to your light.

The code contemplates that the conduit from the light niche to the junction box will have water in it but that the water will never rise to within 8 inches of the box.

Your PB may be confusing the distance requirement for the "6-20" outlet. The code requires that a pool located at a dwelling unit have a 15 or 20 amp convenience receptacle between 6 and 20 feet from the edge of the pool.
 

LeimLife

In The Industry
Jul 27, 2014
25
Cleveland, OH
I've seen electricians that didn't glue the conduit joints or the conduit got broken during backfill. There is a seal that goes around the light cord and into the conduit opening inside the niche. You can use pool putty also. This usually stops the leak pretty good.

pool- adj. A hole of any variois size that you throw stacks of 20.00 bills into
 

gwegan

TFP Expert
Apr 19, 2013
2,769
Sacramento, CA
The NEC contemplates that the conduit from the light niche to the junction box will have water in it. It is usually a bad idea to block the conduit with putty or anything else because it makes running the wire from the pool to the junction box very difficult if you have to relamp.

I've never heard of a seal for that conduit.