curcuit breaker interchangability

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  #1  
Old 07-18-05, 12:37 PM
carlmeyers
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curcuit breaker interchangability

In my seemingly never ending quest to get a new outlet curcuit in my integral garage, I've settled on EMT and I'm ready to start. The next problem has to do with getting the right breaker. I have a G.E AF series 200 amp panel and as I read the printed material on the panel, it seems to specify THQB breakers which I haven't been able to find so far. I did find a GE single pole,20 amp breaker marked THQL which is the same size and would satisfy my needs. Does anyone see anything wrong with this substitution?
 
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Old 07-18-05, 12:47 PM
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I'm not particularly familiar with GE breakers, but, looking at the pictures of THQB vs THQL that I found online, they appear different, as the THQB looks like a bolt on breaker. As such, they are probably NOT compatible.

Google THQB breakers...you will find suppliers online.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 12:51 PM
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Just go to an electrical supply shop not a home center or hardware and they will fix you up.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 03:56 PM
Eggroll
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I've never seen bolt in breakers in a residential situation. So, if they're plug-in style which you should be able to tell by looking at it, then just about any major brand of plug in style breaker that is the same width will work. The only one that won't is square-D. I believe that most common lines of siemens, cutler-hammer, and GE plug in breakers are all interchangeable.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 04:10 PM
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Please ignore Eggrolls advice.

You MUST find a breaker that is compatible and approved by the manufacturer of your panel. You cannot and should not simply find one that fits.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 06:20 PM
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I have a GE panel and it has a sheet glued to the inside of the panel door. It specifies, GE, Murray, Siemens, & Cutller Hammer as repelacement breakers. Just because another brand fits, it should not be used unles listed in the panel.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 08:58 PM
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Sorry Eggroll,

Please help by keeping the answers to Code compliant solutions.

Just because a breaker fits into another brand panel does NOT make it OK to use in that panel.

Breakers will be listed as to which panels that they can be installed in, or, vice versa.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 09:05 PM
Eggroll
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okay... my bad...


Even though the panel is tested by underwriters laboratories and the breakers made by different manufacturers are also UL listed, and even though a siemens breakers is the exact same dimensions as a GE breaker, and even though between a siemens breaker and a GE breaker there is no difference between the tension plug that makes contact with the bus, and though there is no difference between the "hooks" in the panel and the "Hooks" on the breaker that actually holds it in place, and even though when you use a Siemens breaker in a GE panel you couldn't tell the difference other than markings on the breaker, and even though any electrician who's run a service truck has used a breaker in a panel that was of different manufacturers...




The serious answer is yes, try and use the same brand if at all possible.

But... do you always replace every part on your ford (for instance) with motocraft parts? If you bought an energizer brand flashlight with energizer brand batteries and the instructions only list energizer brand batteries... and your flashlight goes dead but all you have are duracells are you going to wait for some energizers?

My point is, it's not as if you have to force these breakers to fit, these will fit without rigging up anything special. Bob53's' panel has a sheet glued in it which states acceptable replacement breakers. If it's not listed in your panel, it's probably listed in the booklet that came with the panel when it was installed which you probably don't have. In a perfect world we would only replace it with a GE breaker. While it may not be an acceptable practice to certain electricians, i've personally had to use breakers of other brands in a panel but only after holding both breakers side by side and making sure it will fit just as smooth and perfect as one by the same manufacturer.

But, like I said, in a perfect world where everything works out for everyone, yes, you should use a breaker that the manufacturer of your panel approves as a replacement breaker. I'm sorry, I should've been more clear in previous post.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 09:33 PM
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Egg was wondering if you can provide a link or know of a source that would verify your claims. I'm not arguing your point!
I just see an incredible liability problem with what you suggest.
 
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Old 07-18-05, 09:49 PM
Eggroll
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I don't have a link... I've only just seen it myself. If you have a GE panel layin around, try a siemens and cutler hammer breaker in it. hold all 3 side by side and look at the outer plastic molding and how they're almost exactly alike. notice how they all fit in the panel without a hitch. I mean seriously though, in the rare instance an inspector bothered to open the door to a panel, he could easily see by the markings on the breaker that they're not the same, but he doesn't make me swap it for one from the same manufacturer.

When your shop sends you a new dewalt hammer drill that still has the instruction booklet, it states in there "only use Dewalt Brand drill bits in your Hammer Drill" but is your shop always going to send dewalt bits?
 
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Old 07-18-05, 10:10 PM
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Yes, but if I put a different drill bit from a different manufacturer in my drill it doesnt burn my house down.
 
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