Another Panel Upgrade Question....


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Old 05-31-06, 11:00 AM
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Another Panel Upgrade Question....

First of all, I'd like to say thanks to everyone for the good info I've found on this board. I just stumbled on this, and with the projects ahead of me I'm sure I'll be here often.

Now to the fun stuff....

I'm moving into a house that currently has a 100A glass breaker panel located in the back corner of the basement. To the left of the panel is the back outside wall. To the right of the panel is a bathroom wall. There's probably 2 1/2 feet between the two. In front of this panel are a sump and a water softener. Obviously access to the panel is not good at all. What I would like to do is upgrade to 200A service, and at the same time relocate the panel about 7-8 feet away on the back wall of the basement (Where there is much better access). Is it possible to feed the existing panel from the new panel allowing me to move circuits as I progress through the remodel of the house?
 
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Old 05-31-06, 11:08 AM
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Do I understand your question properly?

You want to install a new 200 amp service panel somewhere else in the basement, and then install a 240 volt, 100 amp breaker which will feed your existing panel which you will temporarily convert to a sub panel.

Then, as you modify circuits in the house you will remove them from the sub panel, relocating them to the main panel. Eventually you will remove the sub panel completely.

Is that right?


As for your existing panel, it does not sound like it is in a spot that would meet code. The width is correct, if it is 30 inches, but the sump and the water softener in front would not be allowed.
 
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Old 05-31-06, 11:22 AM
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You've got it exactly. I want to install a new 200A panel, and turn the existing panel into a sub until I can move circuits over as I remodel. The original panel will eventually be removed.

As far as the location of the old panel, I wasn't sure what the dimensions were for clearance, but I know it's definately not enough in front of the panel.
 
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Old 05-31-06, 11:29 AM
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Old 05-31-06, 11:38 AM
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The existing location has acceptable width (30"), but the softener and sump violate the 36" clearance requirement in front of the panel. How is the new panel location in relation to the slop sink that appears to be in the lower corner of the picture?
 
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Old 05-31-06, 11:47 AM
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Looking at the slop sink head-on the panel would be about 30" centerline to centerline. However, I plan to remove the slop sink from this area.
 
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Old 05-31-06, 11:51 AM
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Your old location is definitely wrong.

Here is what I would do. I would skip the sub panel idea completely.

Install the new panel. Move any wires that will reach directly into the new panel. If they all reach great, you can eliminate the old panel right away. For any wires that don’t reach, use the old fuse box as a junction box (or simply install a large junction box) and run plain 14-2 or 12-2 (or whatever) cables from the appropriate breakers in the new panel to the "junction box". You could even use 14-3 or 12-3 and make the runs multi wire runs.

This avoids the whole issue of whether the old main panel can legally be converted into a sub panel. (An inspector would probably allow it, since your goal in the end is to remove it, but would certainly not allow it for a "permanent" solution.) This also saves you the cost of a 100 amp (or whatever) breaker for your new panel and appropriate sized wire to feed the "sub panel".
 
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Old 05-31-06, 12:03 PM
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That's kind of the other direction I was thinking of heading. I know they won't all reach to the new box, but I wasn't sure if I could put say a 12x14 box there (or something along those lines) for the time being.

I'm having someone come out to estimate on the job simply because I don't know the ins and outs of if the meter socket will still be good or permitting or power company issues, but I want to have an educated plan going into it. The rest of it I'm more than comfortable with.
 
 

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