How to run electrical wire to my shed

Written by cecilia harsch | 13/05/2017
How to run electrical wire to my shed
Run electricity to your shed so you can use power tools there. (Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images)

Provide electrical power to your shed by running electrical cable from your main service to a sub-panel mounted in your shed. Use underground-feed electrical cable that has waterproof insulation allowing you to bury it underground without the need to bury it in conduit. Check with the local council for the locations of water, cable and electrical lines before running electrical wire to your shed. Some electrical knowledge would be helpful, but it is not necessary.

Dig a trench from your home to your shed at least 60 cm (24 inches) deep using a trenching shovel or a gas-powered trencher. Direct-burial electrical cable should be buried 45 cm (18 inches) deep.

Drill a hole through the exterior of your house below the service panel location and just above the foundation using a wood or masonry drill bit. The hole should accommodate the diameter of the electrical conduit that protects the underground feed cable between the structure and the trench. The size of the hole will depend on the size of the UF cable, anywhere from 1.8 to 3.7 cm (3/4 inch to 1 1/4 inch) in diameter.

Insert a 10 cm (4 inch) piece of electrical metallic tubing through the exterior wall of your home. Install a setscrew connector to the end of the EMT. The LB fitting allows you to pull the wire through the EMT at a sharp 90-degree bend. Tighten the screw to hold the connector to the end of the EMT.

Twist an LB fitting onto the threaded end of the setscrew connector. Thread a setscrew connector into the remaining opening on the LB fitting.

Cut an 45 cm (18 inch) length of EMT using a hacksaw. Attach a setscrew coupling onto one end of the EMT. Slide a 45-degree EMT elbow into the coupling. Slide the opposite end of the EMT into the setscrew connector and tighten the screw.

Install the EMT into your shed, repeating the Steps 2 through 5.

Pull the UF electrical cable from the service panel location, through the EMT and to the trench. Lay the UF cable in the trench leading from your house to your shed. Feed the UF cable through the EMT and into your shed.

Cover the UF cable with the soil you removed from the trench.

Things you need

  • Trenching shovel or gas-powered trencher
  • Drill
  • Wood or masonry drill bit
  • EMT conduit
  • Set-screw connectors
  • LB fittings
  • Phillips or slotted screwdriver
  • Hacksaw
  • Set-screw couplings
  • 45-degree EMT elbow
  • UF electrical cable

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