This article was posted 06/25/2012 and is most likely outdated.

Mike Holt - 2011 Changes to the NEC - 210.5
2011 Changes to the NEC - 210.5

2011 Changes to the NEC – 210.5

The following is an instructional page from our 2011 Changes to the NEC Textbook/DVD Package complete with graphics and video where applicable. As part of our on-going effort to provide free resources to help the industry, we will be sending this content as part of a series of newsletters. Each newsletter will feature pages taken directly from our textbooks. This can be a great training resource for your organization!

There are some important features in this text which help to highlight the changes that you should be aware of:

  • Each Code section which contains a change includes a summary of the change, followed by a paraphrase of the NEC text affected by the change. Any specific change is denoted by underlined text and in the corresponding chapter color
  • Graphics with green borders and 2011 CC icons next to the heading are graphics that contain a 2011 change; graphics without a green border or icon are graphics that support the concept being discussed, but nothing in the graphic was affected by a 2011 Code change.
2011 Changes to the NEC Part 1

210.5(C) Identification of Ungrounded Conductors

The requirements for the identification of ungrounded conductors have been reorganized into a list format.

210.5 Identification for Branch Circuits.

(C) Identification of Ungrounded Conductors—More Than One Voltage System. Ungrounded conductors must be identified as follows:


Figure 210-4 (Click on image to enlarge)

(1) Application. If the premises wiring system contains branch circuits supplied from more than one voltage system, each ungrounded conductor must be identified by phase and system at all termination, connection, and splice points.

(2) Means of Identification. Identification can be by color coding, marking tape, tagging, or other means approved by the authority having jurisdiction.

(3) Posting. The method of identification must be documented in a manner that’s readily available or permanently posted at each branch-circuit panelboard.

Conductors with insulation that’s green or green with one or more yellow stripes can’t be used for an ungrounded or neutral conductor [250.119].

Author’s Comment: Although the NEC doesn’t require a specific color code for ungrounded conductors, electricians often use the following color system for power and lighting conductor identification:

  • 120/240V, single-phase—black, red, and white
  • 120/208V, three-phase—black, red, blue, and white
  • 120/240V, three-phase—black, orange, blue, and white
  • 277/480V, three-phase—brown, orange, yellow, and gray; or, brown, purple, yellow, and gray

ANALYSIS: When NEC sections become longer and longer due to increases in requirements, they often become difficult to read and understand. In this section, for example, the requirement for posting the identification at the panel or a readily available location was often overlooked due to people only reading the first two sentences of the section and not reading the last one. Creating a list format makes the requirements easier to follow and easier to understand by breaking them up and adding titles for the individual requirements.


2011 NEC Changes DVD Package

Don't let the scale of the code changes intimidate you, this package will get you up to speed on the most essential 2011 NEC changes quickly. The book is well-organized, easy to follow, and the full-color illustrations bring the material to life. The DVDs bring together a group of experts from the field to discuss the changes and how they apply in the real-world.

This program includes the following items:

  • Changes to the NEC 2011 Textbook
  • Changes to the NEC 2011 DVD 1 & 2 includes Articles 90 - 810

Product Code: 11CCDVD
Price: $198.00

Order Now


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  • I think these emails are great, Mike. I among others appreciate all that you do.

    mack  June 26 2012, 5:16 am EDT
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