Agricultural Wiring Methods and Codes

Wiring Codes

  • There are two national electric codes, the NESC and the NEC. The NESC covers facilities and functions up to the service point. The NEC covers beyond the service point.
  • National Electrical Safety Code. The NESC is meant to safeguard people during the installation, operation, or maintenance of electrical supply and communication lines, equipment, and associated work practices of those employed by a public or private electric supply, communications, railway, or similar utility. The NESC is published by the IEEE and revised every 5 years. It is typically adopted by state Public Service Commissions or Public Utility Commissions.
  • National Electric Code, also known as NFPA 70. The NEC addresses proper electrical systems and equipment installation to protect people and property from hazards arising from the use of electricity in buildings and structures. It is not a government document, but is typically adopted by each state according to statute or administrative rule. Chapter 5, Article 547 covers agricultural buildings. The NEC is periodically revised by the National Fire Protection Association, a recognized standards developing organization. Visit the website of the Electrical Code Coalition to find out which version of the code has been adopted by your state.
  • Minnesota Department of Labor & Industry information page on electrical codes and standards, including bulletins on agricultural issues and updates to the National Electric Code.
  • National Ag Safety Database information on electrical hazards.
  • Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection’s Rural Electric Power Services Program (REPS). A source for training and information on energy management, farm rewiring, and stray voltage. Managed jointly with the Wisconsin Public Service Commission.

MREC Conference Presentations on Ag Wiring

Older archived presentations concerning agricultural wiring: