existing wiring

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  #1  
Old 08-07-03, 08:40 PM
cthack1976
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existing wiring

Does any one have any tips on easing the pain of figuring out what wiring goes where. Here is what I know so far- The house was built in the early 70's. I have 2 breaker panels One I assume to be the original has a 100a main with a 50a and 4 30a, all two pole. One 30a is running a/c, one to the dryer The other panel has 5 20a single pole and a 30a double for the water heater. I have a range cover, no dishwasher or other major appliance. I have 4 2000 watt 240v baseboard heaters. Anyone care to guess the rest based on what is the most likely? I am going to try and post some pics, if that will help anyone? I appreciate any help you can spare!!confused:

thanks

chad
 
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Old 08-07-03, 08:47 PM
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It only takes a couple of hours to shut off all the breakers one at a time, testing each time to see what doesn't come on any more. That's better than guessing.

The 50-amp in your main probably feeds the sub. One or both of the remaining 30-amp double-pole breakers probably run your baseboard heaters. If you have any electric cooking, one of the double-poles would run that. The 20s are powering all the receptacles and lights.
 
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Old 08-08-03, 01:37 AM
cthack1976
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I now know what all of my breakers control. Here is what i need to know. The five 2000w, 240v baseboard heaters are on two 30a 2 poles. Do I have to buy new single pole breakers to use this wiring for 120v applications?

thanks
 
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Old 08-08-03, 01:44 AM
cthack1976
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One other thing.I have one 20 a that runs all of the overhead lighting. The bare wire has been removed from both ends of the wire. What would be the best way to ground this circuit and other than code is it worth the trouble to ground it and then ground all of the fixtures?
 
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Old 08-08-03, 09:58 AM
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So you are removing the baseboard heaters?

Most likely you will need to replace the breakers, not because of the old ones are double-pole, but because the old ones are 30-amp.

It's hard to comment further without more details of what you have in mind.

What does "the bare wire has been removed from both ends of the wire" mean exactly?
 
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Old 08-08-03, 10:21 AM
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John,, I had a handyman in my area that did work for years,,, I can always tell one of his jobs as the ground wires were clipped off where they entered the boxes. I was in a garage the other day where he actually ran 3 conductor wire and uses old 2 prong plugs, clipped the ground off. Now they are all too short to hook up without moving the boxes or changing wire. He did the same to an electric water heater in another place and who knows how many hundreds of other connections he did like that. (you know the philosophy,, they didnt have a ground when I was a kid and it was fine that way,,, ha)
 
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Old 08-08-03, 05:49 PM
cthack1976
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I am removing the base board heaters and would like to use some of the power to wire an attached utility building. Can I replace one of the 30a 2 pole with 2 20a 1 poles? Also, does anyone know where I can find Zinsco breakers at a reasonable price?

Thanks for the help

chad
 
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Old 08-08-03, 06:28 PM
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A regular receptacle can be protected by at most a 20-amp breaker. Since the baseboard circuit only has two insulated wires plus a ground, you can only get one 120-volt circuit from the same wiring that formerly supported one 240-volt circuit. So when you replace the breakers, you'll end up with some empty spaces in the panel. You can buy filler plates to cover the holes.
 
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Old 08-08-03, 08:35 PM
cthack1976
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Very helpful thought. Let me run something else by you. I have a 120 outlet that was used for an old portable dishwasher. It is wired to a 20a single. Would it be safe and/or in code remove the outlet while using the box as a juction box, splice wire up to the current junction for the outlets and replace the wire from the breaker that is ungrounded? Then I will ground the individual fixtures.

Thanks
 
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Old 08-08-03, 08:57 PM
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Kitchen wiring is specialized and highly regulated. There isn't enough detail in your proposed project to know whether it's legal or not. Are you just trying to ground your ungrounded kitchen countertop receptacles?
 
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Old 08-08-03, 09:21 PM
cthack1976
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7 overhead lights and 4 ceiling fans are wired to a 20a single which has the ground wire removed from the wires. i would reallly like to avaoid cutting any walls if i can. The outlet i am speaking is wired straight to it's own 20a. I'm not sure if it was safe to have a splice in a metal wall box.
 

Last edited by cthack1976; 08-08-03 at 10:14 PM.
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Old 08-09-03, 11:09 AM
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Do I understand correctly that your sole goal here is to ground some lighting fixtures and fans?
 
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