routing wires from surface mount meter panel

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Old 01-08-06, 10:43 AM
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routing wires from surface mount meter panel

Okay, I've figured out how I'm going to get service to this panel, how I'm going to ground the service and how to wire up the load center once power is in the house but I am not sure of the best way to get power from the meter panel/main breaker to inside the house. So I have a couple questions.

1. I have to run three 2/0 wires and a #4 ground from the main breaker on the meter panel to the load center. Can I run these wires inside my walls and in my attic like romex? Can I run the individual wires as a group between the panels? Or do I have to run the wires inside something such as flexible conduit or EMT?

2. I have to run the ground from my meter panel to the water main. This goes near where my load center will be installed. If I use a single, unbroken, unspliced piece of bare copper, can I run the ground from my meter panel to the ground lug on the load center to the water main?

3. What is the best way to get the wires from inside the meter panel to inside the walls of a stucco house? The meter panel has to be surface mounted and sits about 1/2" away from the surface. The wires need to go inside the wall there and up into an attic space across the ceiling of a room and down a wall to the load center.

I was at HD yesterday and looked at several ways of doing this but none seemed really satisfactory. A 2" coupler could be set in the wall so that a conduit nipple (threaded outside, smooth inside) could be screwed into it from inside the panel. Another conduit nipple on the other end of the coupler would provide a smooth edge for the wires coming out. Although I like this solution it only works if the wires can be routed in the walls without conduit.

If I need conduit then it's a completely different story. Then I'll probably need a 2" LB inside my wall although the ones I looked at seemed to be too big to fit inside my wall. My brother suggested a large junction box inside the wall with a 2" close nipple between the back of the meter panel and the junction box inside the wall. My question is: What's the RIGHT way to do this?

Thanks.

Steve
 
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Old 01-08-06, 01:23 PM
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Steve;
Not sure of California's specific rules, but if the meter base and circuit breaker panel are not back to back, we have to install a master disconnect adjacent to the meter base, and then run the 2/0 in conduit to the panel location. Is this a new or remodel. Sounds like a remodel, and you will have a bear running conduit up a finished wall.
Certain municipalities require the grounding wire to run continuously from the weatherhead, through the meter base and then to the panel. Check into this, also.
 
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Old 01-08-06, 06:54 PM
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New or remodel? Kinda both. I have the inside of the house gutted so I can run just about anything I want. The meter panel and 200A main breaker are in a single box separated by a metal divider. No other circuit breakers are in that box. From there I'm running wires to the load center in the house.

I just redid the calculations with some help from Ugly's and I only need 1.5" conduit (any but PVC except Sched 40 which would work) for three 00 THHN wires plus a bare 4AWG ground wire. So putting 1.5" LB in the wall would probably work where a 2" wouldn't. And running flexible conduit to it should be fairly easy. Now it's a matter of mounting an LB on the inside of the stucco so that it's secure and can be securely attached to the main breaker panel.

Thanks.

Steve
 
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