Running Wire in Conduit

Chicago has one of the nation's most stringent electrical codes, and with good reason: Ever since the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, anything related to fire safety has been taken very seriously. The city requires that all electrical work — even in residential settings — be protected by metallic conduit, with no exceptions. Contractors and electricians in other areas may view this as an unnecessary and expensive precaution, but running wiring in conduit — otherwise known as EMT — does in fact offer several advantages over nonmetallic sheathed cable (commonly referred to as NMS or Romex).

Chief among them, of course, is safety. Anyone who's been in the trades knows what happens when an errant fastener finds its way into an unprotected part of the cable. With conduit, the likelihood of that happening is dramatically reduced. Fasteners that come in contact with the pipe tend to simply bend or glance off the wall. Also, when conduit...

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