60 amp service or 100amp????

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  #1  
Old 09-12-06, 10:42 PM
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60 amp service or 100amp????

Hello,

My name is Brandon. I live in Oklahoma. I recently purchased a home from the veterans association, a foreclosure home, and I have a major electrical problem. When I purchased the home, the electrical panel was completely gone. the meter was still there, the service was not "dead" because there is fuses at the pole, and there is a splice box on the back porch of this house right above where the panel should be. I just intalled a Square D Homeline panel, and attatched the 3 wires coming from the meter. My question is I have called a local electrical company to attatch all of the circuits coming from the house and they told me that my service is only 60 amp service. I have a 100amp box with a 100amp main breaker. I have 3 wires (2 black and 1 white) coming off the line from the pole and into my weatherhead. I have an uncle that tells me that I have 100amp service because I have 3 wires coming in, and that if it were 60amp service I would only have 2 wires coming into my weatherhead and out of my meter. Someone please help, I have called 4 different local companies and everyone says something different! Thanks in advance for any help/suggestions!

Brandon
 
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  #2  
Old 09-12-06, 11:14 PM
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I fail to see why a 60A service would have fewer wires.

The electrical company SOMETIMES really does know more about their wires supplying a service than an uncle does.

What gauge are the wires supplying your service? What size are the fuses at the pole?

You should be able to satisfy the utility by replacing your main breaker with a 60A. If you need a 100A service, more work is likely required, but may well be worth it, too.
 
  #3  
Old 09-13-06, 02:21 AM
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Your uncle is wrong. There was a time when many 120/240 60 amp services were installed. The wires comming from the utility are the wrong size perhaps, The drop from the weather head is the wrong size, and you have the wrong size meter, and wires from the meter to the panel.

The new code says that you need a 100 amp service minimum. In most locations, your grandfather clause ended when you purchased the home. The old home owner was grandfathered in and was not required to upgrade. The grandfather clause issue is one to be decided by your local bldg dept, but I suspect that the electrical contractors in you area know what they require.
 
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Old 09-13-06, 04:29 AM
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Many years ago, and in a FEW places in the country, they installed 120 volt service, using two wires. Most of these have long since been upgraded. I believe that this what your uncle is thinking about.
 
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Old 09-13-06, 05:45 AM
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Jwhite is correct.
A one family dwelling is required to have a 100A service (minimum). Your problem may be that your service cable from the weather head to the meter, and from the meter to your 100 Amp main are rated for 60 Amps maximum.
The conductors from the weather head to the meter and from ther meter to the 100A main breaker should be a minimum of #4 copper or #2 aluminum for a 100 amp service.
Your meter itself may not be rated for 100 amps.
Sounds like you may need a new service entry to your new 100 amp main panel.
steve
 
  #6  
Old 09-13-06, 07:34 AM
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Thank you all for the fast responses. I believe that the wire coming into the meter from the weatherhead and from the meter to the panel is #4 copper (3-ot?). also, the previous owners of this house were running 6 wall-unit air conditioners, all 220v. Would using all of this electricity be possible having only 60 amp service? Also will #4 copper work for 100amp?
 

Last edited by baacrb; 09-13-06 at 07:49 AM.
  #7  
Old 09-13-06, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by MAC702
I fail to see why a 60A service would have fewer wires.

The electrical company SOMETIMES really does know more about their wires supplying a service than an uncle does.

What gauge are the wires supplying your service? What size are the fuses at the pole?

You should be able to satisfy the utility by replacing your main breaker with a 60A. If you need a 100A service, more work is likely required, but may well be worth it, too.
Also, my uncle has a residential electricians liscense. He would be the 5th electrician to look at it and all of them are telling me completely different stories.
 
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Old 09-13-06, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by baacrb
Thank you all for the fast responses. I believe that the wire coming into the meter from the weatherhead and from the meter to the panel is #4 copper (3-ot?). also, the previous owners of this house were running 6 wall-unit air conditioners, all 220v. Would using all of this electricity be possible having only 60 amp service? Also will #4 copper work for 100amp?
I have no idea what 3-ot means. and if you have copper feeder drops you are among the few.

no 4 copper is good for 100 amp service.

what the previous oweners used or did not is meaningless at this point.

it is more likely that you have no 4 aluminum. which is what was standard for a 60 amp service. Also the meter may still need to be upgraded.

If you uncle is a qualified residental electrican, then let him pull the permits, do the calcs and guild the work.
 
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Old 09-13-06, 03:23 PM
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I am sure that what I have is #4 copper. Just to be sure, let me get this straight. #4 copper will work with 100amp service, #4 aluminum will not, #2 aluminum will?
 
  #10  
Old 09-13-06, 03:44 PM
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What everybody is trying to say is that the entire system from the POCO tap through the panel must be rated at 100 amp or you cannot have a safe (opr legal) 100 amp service.

It sounds as if you have large enough service conductors.

Did your uncle tell you if you have a 60 or 100 amp meter??. If it is a 60, you will need to upgrade that. The POCO will upgrade their part (from the service drop back towards the POCO tap) if needed AND if your sytstem is legal. (in most areas, that means an inspection)


and yes. #4 cu or #2 al for 100 amp service
 
  #11  
Old 09-13-06, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by jwhite
I have no idea what 3-ot means. and if you have copper feeder drops you are among the few.

no 4 copper is good for 100 amp service.

it is more likely that you have no 4 aluminum. which is what was standard for a 60 amp service. Also the meter may still need to be upgraded..
I'm sorry, maybe its 3/0 wire? My uncle tells me that It is slightly bigger than #4? And what else is weird is that not only does this house have copper feed drops, but I checked the house I am currently living in and it has #4 copper feed drops too (must be something with the area?). Well I had my uncle hook everything up and the inspector will be out tomorrow to check things out and hook up the service. Thanks to everyone that helped clear things up for me!
 
  #12  
Old 09-14-06, 05:40 AM
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Until it hits the meter or weatherhead, the Power Company can use any wire they want or demand. They are not bound by the NEC.

Overhead drops here are often upgraded without changing out the feeders.
 
  #13  
Old 09-14-06, 07:35 AM
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Smile

Originally Posted by MAC702
Until it hits the meter or weatherhead, the Power Company can use any wire they want or demand. They are not bound by the NEC.

Overhead drops here are often upgraded without changing out the feeders.
Around here, the customer is responsible for the service cable (or wires) from the weather head (or service drop connection to the house) to the meter.
It (they) have to be rated for the size (amperage) of the service main.
steve
 
  #14  
Old 09-14-06, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by hillbilly ace
Around here, the customer is responsible for the service cable (or wires) from the weather head (or service drop connection to the house) to the meter.
It (they) have to be rated for the size (amperage) of the service main.
steve
Agreed. I said "or" because an underground feed has no weatherhead, and the utility goes to the meter. Sorry for the confusion.
 
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