What is the proper term for the breaker I am looking for?


Old 11-19-04, 01:39 PM
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What is the proper term for the breaker I am looking for?

Please see this image in regards to my question:


1. I am trying to install a line for a new eletric oven I purchased. The oven requires:
120/240V AC or 120/208V AC, 60Hz, 4 wire, single-phase power supply.
30 amp circuit.

2. I have found a breaker (20A)that controls only 1 outlet in my extension. From it's location, I believe it used to be for an A/C unit that used to be there. (image 1 on the link above) I no longer have use for this, so I will reuse this breaker slot for my oven. (I have no free slots available).

3. From reading other threads, I think I need to replace breaker 1 with something that looks like breaker 2 (with 30A).

4. Than connect a hot wires to each half of the new breaker and I'll have a 220 30A circuit.

Is this thinking correct? If not, please someone correct me. If it is correct, can someone teach me the proper term for this new breaker that I need?

I removed breaker 1 already, and brought it into the Home Depots around my area, but none carry it. I'd like to search through the internet to buy it, but don't know the proper name to do searches.
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Old 11-19-04, 01:56 PM
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What you need is commonly called a two-pole breaker. This will attach to both the hot buss bars. You will need 2 full size slots to install this breaker. A single breaker with 2 handles will not give you the 240 volts that you need.

The pictures are fuzzy, but I would guess that you have a Federal Pacific panel. If so, you will need to get it from a company that specializes in obsolete breakers. It will not be cheap.

If your panel is Federal Pacific you may want to do a search as there have been many articles written about some problems associated with them.
Old 11-19-04, 03:33 PM
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Talking Free photo tip from the Photo Forum:

When you take a picture as close as the ones of your breaker, you would need to set it to macro if your camera has this feature.
If not you have to be back no closer than the "minimum focus distance", which will be in your camera manual.

Using my imagination you appear to have the old Bulldog Pushmatic breaker.

A clearer picture would show exactly what you have.
Old 11-24-04, 09:02 AM
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Thanks for the info.

I can free up 2 slots, one on top of each other. to do so, I have to move my outlet for the cooktop (currently has a dedicated breaker) to the same breaker as my washer (washer). the wires happened to be close to each other in the basement. And my cooktop is gas, so I'm guessing it shouldn't be needing too much juice. Than I need to rearrange the location of the breakers in the panel.

Now my problem is purchasing these old bulldog pushmatic breaker. I see them on ebay, but they are selling them in lots of 10 or more. I only need this one breaker. Luckily, they aren't too expensive even for the lot of 10. One of my Home Depots, does sell new pushmatic breakers made by connecticut electric. Can I use these? They are more expensive, but at least they are new.

Q. Do I have to install a double-pole, or can I install 2 single pole and wire it as if it is a double?

I'm asking, in case it is cheaper to buy 2 single pole, than one double pole.

I took a picture of the entire panel. Would you be able to see if it is a federal pacific? If so, I guess that means I have to look into replacing it in the future. I've already run over my budget on this remodelling job, so it will probably have to wait until next year. Sorry, the picture is still fuzzy. This time I think the reason is because I couldn't keep my hands steady enough. I tried to take it with and without the macro function.
Old 11-24-04, 09:19 AM
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Location: Chester, IL
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It may be cheaper to buy 2 single pole breakers than one double pole, but not much, not enough that its worth the trouble, or the risk. But to answer your question, yes you can, BUT you should also install (and of course buy ...so now your up to the cost of the double) a "switch connector" for lask of a better term, or the correct term (sorry...don't know the name of them ) so that if one breaker trips, the other one will trip automatically, and in my experience, which is admittedly little, they don't hold up long, they break or get loose enough to NOT trip the second breaker. So, IMHO, the double would do you far better than 2 singles and the cheaply made connector.
Old 11-24-04, 11:18 AM
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double poles really don't cost that much. I would be silly to cobble together two single poles and a made bridge to get a double pole that is nec compliant.
Old 11-24-04, 11:23 AM
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The story about Federal Pacific (FPE) breakers/panels starts here:


Replacements for FPE are still being manufactured. Pacific Coast Breakers sells them, just to name one. Visit them on the web at


Or just google "federal pacific replacement breakers".

Regular Square D or GE breakers go for around five bucks or so. I can't imagine anybody would hit you for more than $20 or $30 for a 50 amp/2-pole breaker for your range. (I could be wrong)

Hope that helps.

Old 11-24-04, 11:40 AM
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I saved about a 5 gallon pail of the Fed breakers and now dont even bother, in the junk they go. I did sell a main a while back,,, cash,,,, ha
Old 11-24-04, 11:42 AM
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$11 or $15 for a Siemens 60 amp double pole at HD. I'm using for spa.
Old 11-24-04, 01:08 PM
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Yes, it's a Pushmatic.

If the new Conneticut breaker is approved for use in your panel that would be the way to go.
Old 11-25-04, 09:46 AM
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Ah Bulldog Pushmatic...one of the best service panels ever made.The 2 pole 30 you need should cost you around $35 -$40.I hope you dont plan to put the hots from the cooktop & washer in the same breaker.Its against code & may cause nuiscence tripping if both appliances are on simultaneously.While your getting the 2P 30 you should get a twin 20 breaker.It will take the place of 2 standard 20a breakers but only use the space of one.I would guess they cost around $40.
Old 11-25-04, 04:43 PM
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jproffer :

I think "handle tie" is the word you are looking for.
Old 11-26-04, 10:05 AM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Chester, IL
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Yeah, handle tie thank you Tom..saw "bridge" above too, I guess about anything that gets the point across will work

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