Unique Subpanel Question


Old 01-15-07, 06:18 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Posts: 484
Unique Subpanel Question

Hi everyone,

I have a subpanel 2 feet from the main panel that serves my attached garage; it has two 220v and a 110v breaker. But it has a main breaker of 100 amps. My Main box right next to it also has a 100 amp main breaker.

I thought it was a little wierd but when I removed the covers, I found that instead of the subpanel having a line to the main panel, it actually branches off the main service wire just as the main panel does. So the main service line in is serving both panels and therefore the "subpanel" doesn't have an isolated ground/neutral.

Is this OK to leave it this way? Or do I NEED to change it to a subpanel?

Thanks in advance folks ...I appreciate your help! -Tony
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Old 01-15-07, 06:25 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Assuming that all is wired properly, and the meter is designed to be tapped this way, then this is okay. You don't tend to see this in homes with 100 amp panels, it is more common in larger homes that need more than 200 amps. They have two 200 amp panels, instead of a single larger panel.
Old 01-15-07, 08:07 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Posts: 484
Well, good! I was dreading redoing the whole thing! I just want to clarify that both panels branch off from the main service wire from the telephone pole (after the meter of course). I hope that was evident from my initial question.

Hey, I just realized that I REALLY have 200 amp service! So I assume that the service wire coming from the telphone pole can handle 200 amps since both mains can handle 100 amps at the same time.

Now I just need to figure out a strategy for my backup generator.

Thank you for the help. -Tony
Old 01-16-07, 02:05 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Now in Sun City, AZ
Posts: 135
Use one panel?

I would put the Critical circuits that need generator back up all in one panel. That could then be hooked to the generator, and the other panel could be shut down while on the generator.

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