Replace or Add Panel?

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  #1  
Old 09-10-07, 06:07 PM
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Replace or Add Panel?

I recently moved into a condo townhouse that has aluminum wiring (built in 1974) with a 125A fusebox. There's 16 15A circuits in the panel and I just filled them all up while adding a few circuits in the basement and garage using copper. I know that eventually I'll be adding more circuits or replacing/improving the aluminum wiring in the near future.

Would it be a better idea to replace my old fusebox with a new circuit breaker type box, considering I still have aluminum circuits or add a sub panel?

Thanks.
 
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  #2  
Old 09-10-07, 06:32 PM
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Do not even consider adding to anything with fuses. Replace the fuses with a circuit breaker box.
 
  #3  
Old 09-10-07, 06:35 PM
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Can I hook up aluminum to new circuit breakers?
 
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Old 09-10-07, 07:09 PM
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Yes, aluminum can be hooked up to new circuit breakers, as long as they are rated for same.

Note that a main panel replacement is NOT considered a do-it-yourself job. I recommend that you get three or more estimates and have an electrician do this job for you.
 
  #5  
Old 09-10-07, 07:12 PM
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Yes, most breakers are dual rated Al/Cu. To be sure, the breakers will have the rating printed or etched onto them (Al/Cu). You'll be best served replacing your fuse box with breakers.

You'll still want to be sure to clean the wires and use NoOx on your connections.

Don't forget to check all the connections at receptacles and such - that's where most of the aluminum wiring issues crop up.

Good luck!
 
  #6  
Old 09-10-07, 09:27 PM
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> Can I hook up aluminum to new circuit breakers?

Yes; make sure to use the correct size breaker. A 15A breaker for #12 aluminum, a 20A breaker for #10 aluminum. This is different than for copper.
 
  #7  
Old 09-11-07, 11:00 AM
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Just a caution:
Most places I'm aware of absolutely forbid DIY electrical work of ANY type anyplace except a single family residence. Even if they don't it is highly unlikely any insurance you have would cover you for the liability if you caused damage to another residence due to a wiring issue. You'd be well advised to see what rules apply in your area.
 
  #8  
Old 09-11-07, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by ibpooks View Post
> Can I hook up aluminum to new circuit breakers?

Yes; make sure to use the correct size breaker. A 15A breaker for #12 aluminum, a 20A breaker for #10 aluminum. This is different than for copper.
Great point IB- This so very often over looked, By me and on this site in general!

UncleBill, You are very correct!!!

Condo dwellers beware. Your actions effect many.

In MA. Your not allowed to do your own work. However 95% of inspectors will allow it, Stating it's your home, fair enough.
Condos sometimes can be tough to get that approval.
 
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