Insulation in the Main Panel


Old 09-24-05, 02:25 PM
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Insulation in the Main Panel


I would like to know if it is legal to wrap an electrical wire with electrical tape where it enters the main panel.

I ran wires to my main panel and (like an idiot) I cut the insulation off before pulling it into the panel and now the insulation just barely peeks into the panel through the punch out hole.

I live in Maryland and I’m pretty sure that code requires at least ¼” of insulation inside of the panel so, as I prepare for a home inspection to sell my house, I would like to make sure that everything is okay.

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Old 09-24-05, 09:37 PM
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I assume you do not mean the insulation on the conductors, in which case the answer would be NO. I guess you mean the cable jacket, and I do not know the answer to that. It seems that a tape wrap would provide adequat cable protection. Someone will tell us if code allows it.
Old 09-25-05, 08:15 AM
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Tape will move in time and is not a good alternative to this problem. Can't you find 1/4" of slack in the cable?
If not, as long as the insulation is beyond the cable connector in the panel it will be fine. If it is short of that, you really do need to find the slack.
Old 09-26-05, 06:15 AM
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I’ve pulled the cables pretty tight already but it sure seems like a can find another ¼”. I will give it another shot.

Thanks for your help.

Old 09-26-05, 10:28 AM
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Heat Shrink Tubing

What about a small section of heat shrink tubing to replace the wire jacket? If it is "code compliant", it should be an easy fix and keep you from pulling the wire taught to get the last 1/4 inch.

I'll have to defer to the experts if this would meet code.
Old 09-26-05, 12:08 PM
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That sounds like a good idea.

Does anybody know how I could find out if something like that would comply with code?

Old 09-26-05, 12:20 PM
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chase the wire back, set a junction box and splice in a new length of wire to run to the panel and don't cut off the insulation before you get it in the panel.
Old 09-26-05, 12:25 PM
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That is a good idea also. I thought about that but, again, I wasn't sure if it would comply with code.

...and, don't worry, I will not cut it short this time.

Old 09-26-05, 12:44 PM
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It's okay as long as the junction box is permanently accessible.

You don't want to stretch your cable like a piano wire. It may fail under thermal changes.
Old 09-26-05, 02:09 PM
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Ahhh…good to know about not stretching them like piano wire. The way they are now you could probably play a pretty good tune on them.

I better add that junction box.

I have the home inspector here now looking at things. I’d like to see if he notices. He seems pretty thorough so far….

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