Topic: powering and lighting a shop

just built a 24/30 shop.

Need to wire it up.
and need to light it.

what sort of power should i be looking for?

and how much/many lights or lumens do you normally need.

I dont want to underwire it.
and i dont want to under or over light the thing.

looking for advise. or experience.

Re: powering and lighting a shop

How much do you want to spend?

I assume it is close to your house.  What kind of power do you have going to your house?

I recently built a 36x56 shop.  WIred it for 220/60 amp due to limitations coming from the house.  That is sufficient.  Have enough juice for a 220V welder and a 2 post lift.

I did some craigslist hunting and found a bunch of used fluorescent fixtures.  Going by memory (too lazy to go look), used 4 8 ft fixtures with 2 bulbs each, 6 4 ft fixtures with 4 bulb each, and 4 2 ft fixtures with 2 u-shaped bulbs each.  Lighting is good.  I have 12 ft ceilings, so that makes a difference.  Also, walls and ceiling are painted white which also helps.

I would caution about buying used, though.   I have ended up replacing about 1/2 of the bulbs so far.  As I replace them, I replace them with LED bulbs.  Can get a little expensive, but the light quality is better.

Re: powering and lighting a shop

FWIW, we recently replaced all the 4ft fluorescent lighting in our office building with LED.  Used 4 ft fluorescent has little to no value.  I thought I would supplement my racing fund by selling that stuff off.  I could barely sell a case of good used bulbs for 2 bucks.  I was giving people a 2nd box if they would buy one.  Even in the CL "free" section had no takers.  Ended up having to pay to have a couple hundred disposed.  Same with ballasts.  I still have a box of ballasts sitting next to my desk that got overlooked.

1990 RX7 "Mazdarita" 
1994 Jaguar XJ12 (Winner C-Class 2013 Sears Pointless)
1964 Sunbeam Imp (IOE 2013 Sears Pointless)
1980 Rover SD1 (I Got Screwed 2014 Return of Lemonites) (Sold -> Houston.  Gone and forgotten)

Re: powering and lighting a shop

When I pulled a new feed and rewired my garage (20x20) I ran a 230V/100A feed.
I have an older lump-of-iron TIG welder that can draw 52A, and I wanted heat in the shop with a 230V/30A heater.
Do yourself a favor, when you wire up the outlets use dual-pole breakers and run 14/3  to every outlet with splitting the halves so you have either two 115 circuits or a single 230 available.  You can swap out a 115 duplex outlet for a 230 to get more power for a welder anywhere in your shop.
As for lighting, it's complicated
On one switch I have two of the usual ceramic base bulb holders in which I have 150W equivalent CFLs.
On two separate switches I have two 250W metal-halide daylight 6500K bulbs, each (when new) put out 15000 lumens. They're aimed up and bounce off of the white celing.
On the switch running the CFLs I have a 12v/20A power supply running an even dozen 20W LED COB 4300K/1800lm strips distributed around the garage. Those LED lumen ratings are subject to the "I got these from China" derating, but they're plenty bright.
Theoretically I've got around 1300 lux which is pretty good.

At night it looks like daylight streaming out of the window.

Here's a good basic introduction lighting levels: https://www.noao.edu/education/QLTkit/A … indoor.pdf

More light distributed around is better.

Re: powering and lighting a shop

erich wrote:

Do yourself a favor, when you wire up the outlets use dual-pole breakers and run 14/3  to every outlet with splitting the halves so you have either two 115 circuits or a single 230 available.  You can swap out a 115 duplex outlet for a 230 to get more power for a welder anywhere in your shop.

Not a random disclaimer...check local codes or do this after inspection.  This is technical not legal under the two most current code revisions in a residence but MIGHT be legal in "utility" building.  To clarify what was legal until recently it goes a little different than described (descriptionwas technically accurate, not knocking it).

Each breaker in a box vertically is on a different leg from the one above or below.  Two full space breakers ganged or a true double space breaker (true two-pole) could share a neutral because the "hots" were always in a different aplitude so could not overload it.  This was really common for the outlet under the sink that ran the dishwasher off one plug and garbage disposal off the other.  NEC banned it a few years ago because people would swap around breakers without paying attention to this.

Is it safe...if you or your electrician are the ones doing all the work forever...absolutely!  Get three-fingered Bob the HVAC tech trying to make space in your box down the road...maybe not.

Re: powering and lighting a shop

So, now that I was Debbie Downer...doing your own electrical or no code enforcement?  I am a firm believer in smart, safe wiring codes to protect us from those that do not think need not apply.

12 gauge costs pennies more in DIY.  Make all cricuits 20 amp.  No, by code you do not have to use 20 Amp outlets unless it has no outlets downstream so double them up in each box.  Want to do the 12/3 route from above?  Now you have a much more capable wire for that 220 compressor or welder.  Keep the 14 gauge for the lights. 

I am also a huge fan of exposed 3/4" metal conduit and surface mount boxes cause you can load that conduit up with a ton of conductors and still bend it with a cheap bender.  THHN wire in partial 500' spools is CHEAP on Craigslist and 3/4" EMT is just cheap.  Surface mount or "Handi" boxes and covers are where you spend more money than you should.

Re: powering and lighting a shop

Not a random disclaimer...check local codes or do this after inspection.  This is technical not legal under the two most current code revisions in a residence but MIGHT be legal in "utility" building.  To clarify what was legal until recently it goes a little different than described (descriptionwas technically accurate, not knocking it).

Here in Canada it's MANDATORY to either split kitchen counter breakers or run from a 20A circuit.