Main Panel

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  #1  
Old 03-27-07, 09:54 AM
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Main Panel

Ok, I,ve finished the basement and put in all my outlets and now I need to tye them in...my question is can I split a 20 amp and have an extra line for the basement...some facts are...
1)there was only one 15 amp line for the basement....I used that for High Hats....so thats unavailable
2) 1992 construction in long island new york
3) the main panel does not have a main breaker
4) all the breakers total up to 200 amp
can I split a 20 a bring the main total up to 220 or more.....

Thanks
 
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  #2  
Old 03-27-07, 10:03 AM
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Your questions are somewhat ambiguous. I suspect we just have a terminology problem.

I'm not sure exactly what "split up" means to you.

The sum of the breakers is a meaningless number.

You can almost always add another 20-amp circuit to the panel if there is room for the breaker.

One new 20-amp circuit may or may not provide enough power. When I finished my basement, I added seven new 20-amp circuits. It all depends on what you plan to do down there, and how much power it takes to do it.
 
  #3  
Old 03-27-07, 10:04 AM
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The total of the breakers means nothing. Your breaker total could easily be several times your 200 amp main breaker rating.

If you mean can you install a tandem or mini breaker, that would depend on whether your panel supports them or not. If you can't then you will need to install a sub panel.

As for the 20 amp breaker in general, you must have used all 12 gage wiring to use a 20 amp breaker.
 
  #4  
Old 03-27-07, 10:08 AM
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min panel

by split I mean remove one of the 20 amp breakers in there and put two 20 amps in its place (smaller/narrower ones)...what does a 200 amp box mean...is that the limit...
 
  #5  
Old 03-27-07, 10:14 AM
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200 amps is the maximum that the panel is designed to supply. The main breaker will trip if the current through it exceeds 200 amps. If this is your main panel then it typically means you have 200 amp service.
 
  #6  
Old 03-27-07, 10:16 AM
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If the panel accepts tandem breakers, then yes you can do it. Not all panels accept them, and even those that accept them do not always accept them in all positions. Please give us the make and model number of your panel.

The number 200 tells you the total number of amps that each leg of the service can provide. Remember that a 120-volt breaker only provides amps from one of the legs. And also remember that not all of your circuits are providing their full capacity simultaneously. So it's just fine if your breakers add up to a lot more than the size of your main breaker.

The main breaker does its job, and the indivudual breakers independently do theirs.
 
  #7  
Old 03-27-07, 10:48 AM
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main panel

the model number and make for my panel is, CHALLENGER SL12 (12-24) CCT over SL12 (12-24) CCGT, and it has 6 knock-outs on each side.....please note there is NO Main breaker....when I need to work on the panel in the past it was necessary for me to shut off the power at the meter outside the house and lock it out..
 
  #8  
Old 03-27-07, 10:55 AM
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Okay, I'm guessing that 12-24 means 12 spaces and 24 circuits. So it probably does accept tandem breakers. But that's just a guess, so you should confirm with the manufacturer. Another possible clue is if the label on the panel door lists an "A" and "B" for each space. It should also be covered somewhere on the printing on the panel.

Note that if there's no main breaker, then this isn't what we would call a "main panel". That means you need to keep the neutral and grounding wires electrically isolated in this panel.
 
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