Piggyback Breaker Won't Fit

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  #1  
Old 02-03-07, 05:42 PM
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Piggyback Breaker Won't Fit

I just installed a breaker Interlock Kit for my backup generator. I needed to free up a couple breaker spaces so I planned on using two piggyback breakers. I got to the point I where was installing them and they wouldn't fit. I've got a Square D Homeline panel and I got Square D twin breakers but they won't go. I asked around at the local Lowes and they said only a few panel positions per panel will accept the twins because of the 42 breaker limit. (My box is a 200Amp 30 breaker.)
I came back and tried again. Still no luck. I pulled all the breakers on one side looking for any difference in the positions but none would accept the twins and all seemed to have the same configuration.
Am I out of luck or is there a second Square D Homeline flavor twin that just isn't carried in the stores where I've looked?
 
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  #2  
Old 02-03-07, 06:30 PM
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Tell us the model number of your panel.
 
  #3  
Old 02-03-07, 06:34 PM
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As you are answering John's question, you may want to drop down one notch in the panel. Sometimes the Square-D has a bar across the front of the breaker to prevent installing except in certain positions.
 
  #4  
Old 02-03-07, 07:57 PM
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I have run into this problem before with Square-D Homeline panels. The Homeline tandem breakers have a much shallower fitting for the bus then then the reqular Homeline breakers. Some specific Homeline panels do not accept any tandem breakers. I know the last rainproof Homeline panel I installed had a very small note on the package it shipped in that said "No Tandem Breakers", it took a lot of careful looking to notice the warning.
Good luck
 
  #5  
Old 02-04-07, 06:13 AM
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ihave a square D homeline panel. same problem, I've learned they do not all take mini tandem breakers. If you need more spaces, you need a sub panel
 
  #6  
Old 02-04-07, 06:24 AM
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Thanks for all the help.
I've got a Square D HOM30M200C. It isn't a rainproof model. I didn't see a note on the panel or inside that restricted piggybacks. It isn't new so checking packaging is out of the question.
Does anybody make an "aftermarket" breaker to fit?
I got around the issue by consolidating some circuits that won't have much load on them. It's just the principle of the thing. I started with each circuit having it's own breaker and I'd like to keep it that way.
 
  #7  
Old 02-04-07, 06:43 AM
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With electrical equipment it is not only important that different parts will physically fit together, it is also important that they work together electricly.

In the case of circuit breakers, aftermarket breaker mfgs take the breakers to a testing labratory and have them classified as being suitable for use in each panel for which they want the breaker to be used in. Test of voltage and amperage are done under lab conditions to insure that the breaker will work as designed.

I cannot say that non are out there, but I know of no mfg who makes breakers classified to work in sq d load centers, other than sq d.

This is not true for some other brands. ITE load centers for example.

Another option would be to install a sub panel next to your main panel. Use a two pole 60 amp breaker to feed a 12 circuit Main Lug Only panel, and you will gain 12 spaces.
 
  #8  
Old 02-04-07, 09:38 AM
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Looks like panel doesn't support tandems:
http://ecatalog.squared.com/fulldetail.cfm?partnumber=HOM30M200C
Look at spec sheet.
 
  #9  
Old 02-04-07, 10:42 AM
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Thanks everybody. I guess I'm stuck with what I've got.
I don't need more spaces so no need for a subpanel. I only needed two to make room for the generator breaker.

Bob22, I could have saved a lot of effort if I had thought to look up the spec sheet first. It just didn't occur to me I wouldn't be able to use a piggyback.

While we're on the generator subject, I've got another question. I want to plug my generator into an L14-30 plug in the garage wall. The only plug I can find is a round flanged inlet. It doesn't appear as if it will easily mount to a standard single gang box. I can find L14-30 outlets that mount to a single box. Why not a recessed inlet? I don't want a big weather proof box affair because I'm not mounting it outside. I want something that is going to be flush with the wall when I'm done.
 
  #10  
Old 02-04-07, 11:10 AM
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Under no circumstances do you want to use an outlet for this. You must use and inlet.

If you use an outlet, and the generator is running but not plugged in, you will have a serious safety hazzard and someone could get killed touching that cord end.

You may have to live with a less than pretty box so that you don't die because you choose the wrong part.
 
  #11  
Old 02-04-07, 11:38 AM
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No, you misunderstood me. I didn't explain well enough.
I want the inlet on the correct side like it is supposed to be. The exposed prongs are on the non-energized house side (because of the interlock). I don't want an inlet coming off my generator for exactly the reason you named.

I was wondering why I can't seem to find a recessed inlet to mount in my garage wall. Everything I find on the internet is a weatherproof box for mounting outside the house. Except for the one flanged inlet that is. It just doesn't seem like it lends itself to a single gang box.
 
  #12  
Old 02-04-07, 11:58 AM
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It won't fit in a single gang box. Shop at an electrical supply house and you can find what you need.
 
  #13  
Old 02-04-07, 12:08 PM
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Excellent catch by bob22 on the spec sheet.

Be very careful with Square D because of the counterfeit recall issue. I believe that is mainly behind us, but I would not be shopping for Square D on the famous auction site, or any other suspect sourcs. They may still be pawning off the counterfeit stuff.

http://www.inspect-ny.com/electric/SquareDRecalls.htm
 
  #14  
Old 02-04-07, 12:38 PM
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this page from the leviton web site has a catalog with a inlet that will fit in a singe gang box.

http://www.leviton.com/OA_HTML/ibeCCtpSctDspRte.jsp?section=17132&minisite=10021

pdf page for the device is 109 catalog page is E22.

It is also made to fit in a WP box cover. I am trying to find a cover that will take the device and let it fit in a standard box.

What part did you find that you do not think will fit in a single gang box?
 
  #15  
Old 02-04-07, 04:14 PM
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The inlet I found earlier was a cooper CWL1430FI.
It looks the same as the Leviton #2715. (Thanks for the site.) They both look like they will physically fit inside a single box, it's just the mounting to the box I'm struggling with. The Leviton site had some plates that looked promising but I haven't hit on the right one yet. I'll keep looking.

Was the catalog the you intended me to look in L-100 (41Mb)? I'm on dial-up at home so it'll be next month by the time that finishes downloading. I'll have to sneak it at work tomorrow.
 
  #16  
Old 02-05-07, 09:21 AM
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Do not follow the advice that was posted here.
 

Last edited by racraft; 02-05-07 at 09:34 AM. Reason: Dangerous advice is inappropriate for posting.
  #17  
Old 02-05-07, 05:05 PM
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I would be tempted to get creative with a two gang box and two gang metal blank plate....
 
  #18  
Old 02-05-07, 07:10 PM
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jwhite, the Leviton catalog looks promising. I can almost piece together what I want. I'm going to take a page or two from the catalog and stop by the local electric supply store and see what we can work out.

I was already planning the blank face plate plan B before you suggested it.

If there is a chance I can do what I want with drop in components even if it costs a little more I'll do it.
But, if this just gets ridiculous I'm looking for a hole saw.

Thanks for all the help, I'll let you know how it turns out.
 
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