Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?

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Do you live in an apartment building and have questions about wiring? 

Are you wondering if it’s safe to use Romex, a type of electrical cable, in your apartment? 

If so, then this blog post is for you! 

Here we’ll explain what Romex is and whether or not it can be used safely in an apartment Building.

Romex® Type NM Cable is a popular choice for residential wiring, as it is relatively inexpensive and easy to install. 

Romex can be used in apartment buildings. However, it is not suitable for use in all buildings and should not be used in certain types of construction. 

It is important to understand the building code requirements. And the type of construction before attempting to use Romex® Type NM Cable. 

This blog post will explain what Romex® Type NM Cable is, the types of construction it can be used in, and how to ensure safety when using it. In addition, this blog post will provide information on alternative wiring options for apartment buildings.

What is Romex® Type NM Cable?

Romex® Type NM Cable is a popular electrical cable used in residential and commercial buildings. 

It is a type of nonmetallic-sheathed cable, commonly referred to as NM cable. 

This type of cable is composed of two or more insulated conductors, sheathed in an outer plastic jacket. 

It is also available in several sizes and colors, allowing for easy identification of the conductors within the cable. 

The most common type of Romex® is 14/2 gauge, which contains two insulated conductors and one bare copper ground wire. 

Romex® is a great choice for residential wiring projects. Because it is easier to install than other types of electrical cables.

And Romex is more affordable than other materials used in electrical wiring projects in apartment buildings.

What Is Type I and Type II Construction?

Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?
Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?

Type I and Type II construction are the two most common types of construction used in multi-family dwellings such as apartment buildings. 

Type I is a noncombustible construction, which is typically made of concrete, steel, or masonry. 

Type II construction is combustible and is often made of wood or other materials that are easier to work with and less expensive than noncombustible materials. 

Both types of construction must meet certain requirements to ensure the safety of the occupants. 

For instance, windows, doors, and other openings must be properly sealed with fire-resistant materials, and fire-resistant insulation must be installed in walls and ceilings. 

Additionally, all combustible materials must be kept away from any potential sources of fire such as heating systems or electrical wires. 

By following these guidelines and abiding by the building code for your area, you can ensure that your building is safe for its occupants.

What Is Type III, IV And Type V Construction?

Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?
Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?

Type III, IV, and V construction refer to the different types of noncombustible construction materials used in buildings. 

Type III construction is a heavy timber frame, while Type IV and V are steel or concrete structures. 

Type III is typically used for residential buildings up to four stories tall, while Types IV and V are often used in commercial or industrial buildings that are taller than four stories. 

Romex® Type NM cable is approved for installation in all three types of construction, as long as the building does not exceed the height limitations specified in Appendix E of the 2002 NEC.

What Type of Construction is the Building?

When installing Romex® Type NM cable in a building, it’s important to first determine what type of construction it is. 

Multi-family dwellings up to 5 stories can use Romex® in types III, IV, and V constructions. 

Noncombustible construction types I and II can also use Romex®, provided the building code will allow combustible materials. 

Wood frame buildings are usually considered Class I constructions, where Romex® is not allowed. 

Knowing the type of construction of the building is an essential step before installing Romex® Type NM cable.

Is Romex® Type NM Cable Approved for Multi-Family Dwellings?

Romex® Type NM cable is approved for multi-family dwellings up to five stories of construction types III, IV, and V. 

This means that those who live in a multi-family dwelling with up to five stories can use Romex®. 

However, it is important to note that these cables should not be used in any apartment buildings or structures of combustible construction such as Types I and II. 

It is also important to check with local building codes before using Romex® Type NM cable in any multi-family dwelling. 

Doing so can ensure that the cables are being used safely and in compliance with regulations.

Can Romex® Type NM Cable Be Used in Noncombustible Constructions?

Yes, Romex® Type NM Cable can be used in noncombustible constructions, such as Types I and II. 

Type I and II construction require that the building is built of noncombustible materials such as brick or concrete. 

This type of construction is often used in taller buildings and multi-family dwellings, where the risk of fire is greater. 

Romex® Type NM Cable is approved for use in these types of buildings, provided the building code allows it. 

It must be installed in accordance with local codes and regulations to ensure safety.

Why Is Romex® Dangerous in Some Buildings?

Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?
Can I Use Romex In An Apartment Building?

Romex® Type NM Cable is not approved for use in certain building types, such as multi-family dwellings, due to safety concerns. 

The National Electrical Code (NEC) prohibits the use of Romex® in any dwelling or structure over three stories high. 

Additionally, Romex® must never be left exposed, as it can be a fire hazard. 

If it is used in a combustible construction, it must be run through conduit and properly supported in accordance with NEC requirements. 

This helps to protect the cable from mechanical damage and reduce the risk of fire hazards.

How Can I Ensure Safety in My Building?

When it comes to ensuring safety in a building that uses Romex® Type NM cable, one of the most important steps is to ensure that the cable is installed correctly. 

It is important to ensure that all connections are properly secured and that all joints are properly taped and covered with insulating material. 

Additionally, any type of fire-life-safety or area increase exceptions should be documented. 

Furthermore, when using Teck cable, it is essential to make sure the armor of the cable is bonded through an approved ground bushing. 

Finally, receptacles should not be located within 1.5 meters of the bathtub, shower or clothes washer to prevent potential shock hazards. 

By taking these precautions, it is possible to ensure the safety of any building that uses Romex® Type NM cable.

What Are Alternatives to Romex® Type NM Cable?

When installing wiring for a multi-family dwelling, there are alternatives to Romex® Type NM Cable. 

MC cable is a metal-clad armored cable, which can be installed underground or in conduit. 

It provides a cheaper alternative to conduit while still offering physical protection and fire resistance. 

Additionally, individual wires can be installed inside of a rigid or flexible metal or plastic tubing called conduit. 

Conduit provides additional mechanical protection and allows for easy replacement of individual wires if necessary. 

As with Romex® Type NM Cable, individual wires should be labeled and identified to ensure safety. 

Both of these options are approved by the National Electrical Code (NEC) for use in multi-family dwellings. 

Ultimately, it is important to ensure that the wiring system used meets all local and state codes for safety and reliability.


In conclusion, Romex® Type NM cable Can be used in an apartment building under certain conditions. 

While it may be allowed in some countries or for certain types of construction, it is generally not suitable for multi-family dwellings. 

It can be dangerous in buildings with combustible construction, and the best way to ensure safety is to install the cable in approved conduits. 

There are alternatives to Romex® Type NM cable available, such as MC metal-clad cable and armored cable. 

It is important to check with local code officials before beginning any wiring project to make sure that the materials used are up to code.

Best Wishes!

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About Charlie D Paige

Charlie is a massive DIY fan, with dozens of DIY projects under his belt - ranging from tiling to electrics, and concrete pads to walls. Charlie loves tinkering, seeing how things works, the outdoors and playing with power tools... so is it any wonder that he's completed so many DIY jobs over the years?

Charlie loves spreading his hard-won DIY experience with the world via this blog.