What is a 'panel plug'?


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Old 04-12-05, 06:37 AM
boppa7
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What is a 'panel plug'?

In my new home I have an outlet right next to the panel and it has a dedicated circuit breaker called 'panel plug'. What is it used for and does it need a dedicated breaker?
 
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Old 04-12-05, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by boppa7
In my new home I have an outlet right next to the panel and it has a dedicated circuit breaker called 'panel plug'. What is it used for and does it need a dedicated breaker?
Is it a standard looking receptacle (happy face)?
 
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Old 04-12-05, 10:26 AM
boppa7
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Yes. The only thing that makes it stand out from all other receptacles is that it is beige with a metal utility cover vs the standard white in all other places in the house.

Perhaps a picture would help.
 
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Old 04-12-05, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by boppa7
Yes. The only thing that makes it stand out from all other receptacles is that it is beige with a metal utility cover vs the standard white in all other places in the house.

Perhaps a picture would help.
Hi boppa7,

It appears from your picture, that the label says "Panel Plug" because the 15 amp recept is simply in close proximity to the panel. The breaker could probably have been more appropriately labled as "Recpt at panel"

Regards,
Mike
 
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Old 04-12-05, 10:58 AM
boppa7
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Mike,

While that was also my first thought though I still find it rather odd that the receptacle is so noticably different than all other plus it is the only device on the circuit.

Should I be using it? Can I extend it to other parts of the basement? Pondering...

Jason
 
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Old 04-12-05, 11:30 AM
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It's possible that a previous owner used that plug to backfeed a generator into the panel using a male-male extension cord. This is wrong and dangerous, but unfortunately common. That would explain the "mysterious labelling".

I don't see any reason why you couldn't use it as a normal plug.
 
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Old 04-12-05, 12:36 PM
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Not sure if it was code or not but it is very common here to see a plug at the panel. Usually the first thing installed so you can have some power as other circuits are added.
 
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Old 04-12-05, 12:50 PM
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Wink

Ill bet it was put there to have power to the home after they set the main panel and meter. Before any thing else was wired in

ED
 
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Old 04-12-05, 03:06 PM
boppa7
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Ed,

That makes perfect sense. When they were building the house (I'm the first occupant) I remember them having extension cords running up from the basement long before the place was completely wired. That may also explain the utility look of the box as compared to the other, finished boxes.

I am getting an electrical inspection of my garage sub-panel in the next week or so. I will ask the local inspector for his thoughts and get back to you all.

Thanks,
Jason
 
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Old 04-12-05, 03:52 PM
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I think a receptacle at the service panel is required by code (maybe some codes)....whether it is to be the only thing on that circuit is another question.
 
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Old 04-12-05, 04:06 PM
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It is a common misconception that a panel receptacle is a code requirement. It is not.
It is however code to have a receptacle in a full basement, regardless if is there is an electrical panel present. The easiest way to meet this requirement is to place it next to the panel if the panel is in the basement.
 
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Old 04-12-05, 04:06 PM
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I might add that the reason it is likely off white is because of the same reason I have a drawer full of them.............................Everyone wants white ones now.
 
 

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