Can't turn off my power!

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Old 11-27-07, 03:24 PM
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Can't turn off my power!

Hi,

I bought a house recently and I can't figure out how to turn off the power. The breaker box doesn't have a main switch that I can flip to turn off all the power to the rest of the breaker box. If I want to cut power to the whole house, I have to flip 26 individual breakers. Is this normal? Is there another way to turn the power off? I looked outside, thinking there might be a main cut off switch, but the electric meter is on the exterior wall exactly where the breaker box is, and there are no switches.

The reason I ask about this is because I believe I have a faulty breaker and I would like to replace it. In the other houses I've lived in, I just turn off the main breaker, so there is no power to the other breakers, and replace the breaker, or add a new one. Easy...

So, is it possible for me to safely replace the breaker without calling the electric company and asking them to disconnect my power? I hired an electrician recently to handle the same sort of situation and they somehow removed a breaker without help from the power company. I just hate to pay $100 for something that would only cost me $10...

Thanks,
Ranthalion
 
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Old 11-27-07, 03:45 PM
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If you feel 100% safe doing it you can just remove the breaker in question with the panel hot. Electricians do it all the time. But ONLY if you are 100% ok with it. It can be dangerous!!!
All electrical installations must have a main disconnect or no more than six disconnects. Are you sure that one of your breakers is not your main. Look for a 100 amp (or maybe a 60 for an older home) two pole breaker near the top or bottom of your panel. That could be your main even though it is not marked. Also you did say that you checked out side but if there is another box next to your meter that may be your main. Also, if you live in a duplex there may be a cover without the POCO's seal on it.
 
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Old 11-27-07, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Tolyn Ironhand View Post
If you feel 100% safe doing it you can just remove the breaker in question with the panel hot. Electricians do it all the time. But ONLY if you are 100% ok with it. It can be dangerous!!!
I wouldn't have even mentioned that in a DIY forum. There is NEVER a reason why a non-electrician should ever need to do this.
 
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Old 11-27-07, 04:59 PM
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there is a chace you may have what we called split buss panel box.

typically most older breaker box what dont have a master main breaker on split buss useage the " main " breakers will be the top 4 or 6 breaker slots [ double pole arrangement]

the only way you can do this is turn off all the breakers i am sure one of the breaker is used for lower section.

if this place is a rental JUST STOP right there and get ahold of mangement personals to get the electrician.

if you are a homeowner there are some case it will jusify the cost having the electrician come out and replace the breaker as what you describing there are some issuse it will come up and for my safety reason i will not expain all the details how to change breaker hot at all due one wrong move can have nasty flashover , good chance it can kill ya. [ i work on 480volt system pretty often so i know how much it will kick ]

the main reason why i kinda reluct to say to you how to change this because i do not know what brand breaker box you have once we know what brand it may change some degree how to do this in a safe manner.

Merci, Marc
 
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Old 11-27-07, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by HotinOKC View Post
I wouldn't have even mentioned that in a DIY forum. There is NEVER a reason why a non-electrician should ever need to do this.
I am new to this forum and I will remember this next time. Although, for a DIY forum there seams to be a lot of advanced questions.
 
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Old 11-28-07, 04:58 AM
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Thanks for the responses. I have a cutler hammer breaker box, I believe it is model CH614D. I'll see if I can find a manual that specifies a combination to cut the power to the rest of the panel...
I'll post a picture when I get home tonight, in case that will help.
 
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Old 11-28-07, 06:01 AM
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Hrm.. I can't seem to find any information about cutler hammer panel boxes online. Anyone have any recommendations on where to look? The Cutler Hammer web site doesn't seem to work. (www.cutlerhammer.com) Besides, I bet my panel box is old/out of production.
 

Last edited by Ranthalion; 11-28-07 at 06:02 AM. Reason: Additional Info
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Old 11-28-07, 07:00 PM
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Cutler Hammer is Eaton now:

http://www.eaton.com/EatonCom/Market...ical/index.htm

Yes, post a pict of your panel if you can.
 
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Old 12-01-07, 01:48 PM
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Middle of Breakers?

I have a ghetto 100A & Meter combination panel. The main disconnect is in the center, but it's clearly labeled.
 
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