Service upgrade help!!

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  #1  
Old 12-08-05, 05:44 AM
daneelectric
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Exclamation Service upgrade help!!

Well hopefully this is this last addition we will be doing to the house. The house was an original colonial but now, after all said and done, will be a copper mine. I am good friends with the homeowners, so the labor rate will be fairly inexpensive for them. There is an existing overhead service entrance feeding a CL200 ring style single meter socket feeding a single 200A main panel. Within that main panel there is a 100A breaker feeding a detached garage via an underground service. With the latest addition done to the house the electrical rough in is scheduled by the end of next week. The new addition heeds much more current then the existing 200A panel can handle. It is a 42 slot that is loaded to the gills and is in great demand of an overhaul. Instead of just adding another sub-panel, I would like to upgrade the service. I would like to add another 200A main and have (2) 200A main panels. In return, this will need a CL320 meter socket. Iíll need one adequate for 2 outputs for each of the 200A panels. AND for the questions.

I am under the assumption PECO is not responsible for anything past the end of their overhead service. Correct? Itíd be nice if they supplied the new meter socket.

I have to contact them anyway for I will need a new meter as the existing is sufficient for 200A only. Should I have them install a new overhead drop as the original is up there now, and would a larger AWG drop be a good idea? Will they charge for that?

Any suggestions for an inexpensive CL320 meter socket?

How about grounding and bonding? I figured to bond the neutral bus and the ground bus in each panel and then have a single ground wire for each panel and tie them both at the existing ground rod? What AWG for this setup?

Good plan so far? All suggestions and ideas appreciated.
 
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  #2  
Old 12-08-05, 05:59 AM
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Power companies have their own rules. Some supply meter sockets, others do not. Sometimes they are free, sometimes they charge for them. The power company will decide if the entrance cable is large enough for 400 amps, and will upgrade if necessary. They may or may not charge for it.
 
  #3  
Old 12-08-05, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by daneelectric
Well hopefully this is this last addition we will be doing to the house. The house was an original colonial but now, after all said and done, will be a copper mine. I am good friends with the homeowners, so the labor rate will be fairly inexpensive for them. There is an existing overhead service entrance feeding a CL200 ring style single meter socket feeding a single 200A main panel. Within that main panel there is a 100A breaker feeding a detached garage via an underground service. With the latest addition done to the house the electrical rough in is scheduled by the end of next week. The new addition heeds much more current then the existing 200A panel can handle. It is a 42 slot that is loaded to the gills and is in great demand of an overhaul. Instead of just adding another sub-panel, I would like to upgrade the service. I would like to add another 200A main and have (2) 200A main panels. In return, this will need a CL320 meter socket. Iíll need one adequate for 2 outputs for each of the 200A panels. AND for the questions.

I am under the assumption PECO is not responsible for anything past the end of their overhead service. Correct? Itíd be nice if they supplied the new meter socket.

I have to contact them anyway for I will need a new meter as the existing is sufficient for 200A only. Should I have them install a new overhead drop as the original is up there now, and would a larger AWG drop be a good idea? Will they charge for that?

Any suggestions for an inexpensive CL320 meter socket?

How about grounding and bonding? I figured to bond the neutral bus and the ground bus in each panel and then have a single ground wire for each panel and tie them both at the existing ground rod? What AWG for this setup?

Good plan so far? All suggestions and ideas appreciated.
Whew! There is so much to explain here that it would take a few hours to type it all. Then you would be sure to forget something. I would start your project by reading this article below. This article addresses your 320 meter base in several places. Just a tad past half way through it you will see some photos of a paralleled 320 meter base serving two 200 amp panels mounted side by side. Good luck!~!

http://www.selfhelpandmore.com/homew...eter/index.htm
 
  #4  
Old 12-08-05, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by daneelectric
Any suggestions for an inexpensive CL320 meter socket?

How about grounding and bonding? I figured to bond the neutral bus and the ground bus in each panel and then have a single ground wire for each panel and tie them both at the existing ground rod? What AWG for this setup?

Good plan so far? All suggestions and ideas appreciated.
Are you an electrician? These are not questions an electrician should be asking.


An individual conductor to a ground rod needs to be no larger than #6.
What about your water bond?
One existing ground rod? You will most likely need two.
The POCO is responsible for the drop and will replace it at their discretion.
 
  #5  
Old 12-08-05, 03:05 PM
daneelectric
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Smile

racraft and roger, thanks for input. This site is great, I posted this this morning and there were responses by the end of the day. I will be sure to follow all NEC codes and calculate all apacities properly. Now, just a matter of getting these darn expensive materials.

IF ANYONE HAS A CL320 400A METER SOCKET NEW OR USED CAPABLE OF PARALLEL PANELS, PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
Thanks all for inputs.

Speedy Petey, yes, I am an electrician. Are you a human? I may not have been doing this for 84, 72, 62, or 58 years now, however long you've been doing it, but there are occasions where electricians are aloud to ask electricians questions. Thanks for asking though. If you ever need any work done feel free to e-mail me, and I'll give ya a free estimate. As far as bonding to the water pipe, I took that for granted (for its already done with the existing service) in my original thread but glad you reminded us.
 
  #6  
Old 12-08-05, 04:04 PM
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Wow, touchy are we?
Sorry that you feel defensive about not knowing your job. This is a DIY site, it's a bit strange when an electrician asks basic questions.

Might I suggest http://electrical-contractor.net/
 
  #7  
Old 12-08-05, 04:09 PM
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You'd better be careful soliciting a used meter pan. Make sure it is approved by your POCO.
The ones I use you need to buy the lugs separately. If you are doing a parallel service you get dual lugs for it.

Expensive materials? Is this a contract job?
Did you give a price/estimate before knowing what the materials would cost?
 
  #8  
Old 12-08-05, 07:42 PM
daneelectric
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As a young (yup, these kids these days, think they know everything) electrician, I HAVEN'T done EVERY type of job out there. Most residential dwellings have at most a 200A main. So yes, I can sit down, and look through all the tables and charts and run the figures. But, I was just looking for something along the lines of, "Oh, 2 200A to a 320, yeah, bond this here use 400Kcml size...etc. etc." Figuring that an Xmillion people view these posts daily. So, enough explanation, get `er done!

So, pricing, well, yes and no. I mean, this was initially quoted without the need for an upgrade, for the initial quote was without the need for dedicated base board heat. Now HVAC inspectors come in and say, yeah, you need like 5600 watts to accomodate etc etc. So it brought about maybe a full upgare will be a better idea, I kinda pushed, for it'd be more money. So, their gonna go with it, and I know we'll get the materials cheap, but call goes in tomorrow to POCO. We'll keep ya posted on all the quarrels they're gonna have. Thanks, Dane.
 
  #9  
Old 12-09-05, 11:19 AM
the_fiddler
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Danelectric,

I usually avoid direct personal criticism on forums as it is so easy to just blow off at somebody without having to interact with them personally but in this case I have to say that I hope you take a careful look at your business practises and re-evaluate whether you are doing a fair job for this client or not.

It's people like you that make people like me want to do-it-myself rather than call a contractor.

You have just stated that you have tried to push this client into upgrading their service because it will be more money for you and you will get the materials cheap. Then you come on here and ask the world whether anyone has some used parts you can have/buy, claiming that the materials are 'really expensive'. All this so you can make even more money off this client who thinks they are getting all new high quality stuff. Then you ask what other electricians are calling 'basic' questions. Even I was a little suspicious when you asked whether you could ground the new panel to the existing ground rod, I would hope that any electrician I was hiring would at least know this or be able to look it up aweful quick.

I could go on but just read your own posts and see if you would even want to hire yourself. I feel sorry for these folks that are trusting you with this job.

F
 
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