Shared Neutral - replaced breaker

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Old 03-24-06, 11:22 AM
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Shared Neutral - replaced breaker

Heres the situation, I replaced a single 20A breaker with a new single wide, but double 20A breaker. After I did it, I wondered if this would be a problem when the first original circuit was on a shared neutral arrangement.

This came about due to my Basement remodel I am completing. My plan was to take the upstair bath circuit & the new basement bath circuit and put on this new double breaker within a single slot. This way both baths are still indpendant of each other and both are on 20A breakers. The origial wiring on the upstairs bath had it on a shared neutral with another circuit. The new basement bath is using its own 12/2 romex.

FYI, I did place this new double breaker in the same location that the old single breaker came from. Panel uses Seimens breakers.

As a seperate question, does it matter if the panel has all or most of the 20A circuits on 1 side in this case the right hand side, and all or most of the 15A circuits on the left? I just noticed that when I was adding a couple of my basement circuits.

Thanks for your help. Mike
 
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Old 03-24-06, 11:49 AM
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As I read your post you are okay. As long as the two hot wires for the shared neutral circuit go to the same breaker positions as they originally went to then you are fine, assuming they were correct before you started.

To be safe, use a voltmeter and measure between the two hot wires. You should get 240 volts.
 
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Old 03-24-06, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by mike-the-diy'er
I wondered if this would be a problem when the first original circuit was on a shared neutral arrangement.

FYI, I did place this new double breaker in the same location that the old single breaker came from. Panel uses Seimens breakers.

does it matter if the panel has all or most of the 20A circuits on 1 side in this case the right hand side, and all or most of the 15A circuits on the left?


1. There should be a label inside the panel door showing which breaker slots are connected to which bus, each of which is connected to one line from the transformer. I refer to these as the A and B bus.

2. Two handles manufactured into one assembly that fits in a single slot is usually referred to as a tandem. Sounds like a tandem breaker is what you're talking about. A "double wide" or "double slot" breaker is often referred to as a two-pole or double-pole breaker.

3. As long as your neutral is shared by two breakers, one on the A bus and one on the B bus, you are OK. But you cannot share the neutral between the two handles on one tandem in any panel I've seen.

4. Most panels split the A and B bus evenly between the right and left side, alternating with each slot. So for example 1 is on A, 3 is on B, 5 is on A, 7 is on B. So assuming you have a typical panel and the breakers are not in every other slot or something like that, you are OK.
 
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