FPE Panel with breakers

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  #1  
Old 04-28-06, 02:42 PM
map686
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FPE Panel with breakers

I need to add some breakers to a FPE panel. I am wondering if any fpe breaker will fit. I am redoing some shoddy work that someone had done before. I.E. doubling hots on existing breakers. I plan to add 2 15 amp breakers to separate the doubled circuits. The guy before me put 14-2 wire on 20 amp breakers. What a hack! Anyway, I was looking at some suppliers sites and they really do not tell to much about the breakers. The panel is FPE L120-40
As always, any help would be great. Thanks All, MP
 
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Old 04-28-06, 03:15 PM
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Most all FPE Stablok panels sold in the U.S. are considered obsolete and unsafe; you should consider having this panel replaced entirely. Look at this website for a comprehensive description of the problems with FPE breakers and panels.

http://www.inspect-ny.com/fpe/fpepanel.htm

Originally Posted by map686
doubling hots on existing breakers. I plan to add 2 15 amp breakers to separate the doubled circuits.
You should only do this if you can verify that the two circuits have seperate neutrals. If in fact, the doubled circuit shares the neutral wire elsewhere in the circuit your fix could potentially load 30A onto a shared neutral segment.

Originally Posted by map686
The guy before me put 14-2 wire on 20 amp breakers.
Now this problem should be fixed with 15A breakers.
 
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Old 04-29-06, 04:49 AM
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Even if you install new breakers (which may or may not be better than the originals) you are still installing them into a panel of questionable quality. As a contractor, I make homeowners sign a disclaimer when I do ANY modifications in an FPE panel.

If you can't change the panel (yes, I understand finances as well as anyone) at least double check that the new breakers set properly and SNUGLY into the panel buss. They should resist being pulled out. The design of the buss is such that bending the contact on the breaker is fairly easy so care MUST be exercised when installing the breaker - don't hurry this part along. You shouldn't have to force the breaker in.
 
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Old 05-22-06, 02:26 PM
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Forget about what you're trying to do. Hire an electrician to change your panel! Federal Pacific panels are fire hazzards!

http://www.inspect-ny.com/fpe/fpefield.htm
 
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