Advice needed for changing my panel

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Old 10-03-09, 10:22 AM
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Advice needed for changing my panel

My area was upgraded from a 60 AMP service to a 200 AMP service. I presently have a 60 AMP glass fuse panel. I want to change to a 200 AMP breaker panel, and put the old panel in my garage and run the garage separate from the house so to speak. I'd like to know the best way to do this split. Also, will I need to replace the main line coming from the new 200 AMP box on the side of my house, to my fuse panel? The wire from the outside panel to my fuse panel is still the original. Everything from the street to the outside panel has been replaced and updated. I assume the wire coming to my fuse panel can only handle 60 AMPS and will need to be replaced.

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Old 10-03-09, 12:39 PM
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I agree, the wire from the meter will most likely need to be upgraded. It depends on what you have there now.

Inside, don't even bother with trying to reuse that old panel. It's just out of date. You can buy a new panel kit for less than $100, often with a few breakers included. This is a much better deal. I like to match brands but you don't have to. By doing this I only have to keep one type of spare breaker on hand. Yeah, I keep spares.

Not only is it outdated, but you need a separate ground and neutral bus in a subpanel. Since this was the main panel it is probably combined, which is fine - if it is the main panel. You probably won't find an approved neutral bus bar for use in the old panel and/or may not be able to isolate the ground and neutrals.

You'll need to run 4 wire cable to the new location. If it is in a separate building, you'll need to install a ground rod as well.

Hope this helps.
 
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Old 10-03-09, 05:07 PM
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What he said about trying to reuse anything!!!! Forget it. But everything from where you connect to the power company line will probably need to be replaced. In our area, the POCO supplies power to a house connection(service entrance cable), mast, or whatever. From there is our responsibility.

No disrepect intended, but from the sounds of your questions, you probably should leave this up to a pro.
 
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Old 10-04-09, 07:28 AM
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Originally Posted by aandpdan View Post
I agree, the wire from the meter will most likely need to be upgraded. It depends on what you have there now.

Inside, don't even bother with trying to reuse that old panel. It's just out of date. You can buy a new panel kit for less than $100, often with a few breakers included. This is a much better deal. I like to match brands but you don't have to. By doing this I only have to keep one type of spare breaker on hand. Yeah, I keep spares.

Not only is it outdated, but you need a separate ground and neutral bus in a subpanel. Since this was the main panel it is probably combined, which is fine - if it is the main panel. You probably won't find an approved neutral bus bar for use in the old panel and/or may not be able to isolate the ground and neutrals.

You'll need to run 4 wire cable to the new location. If it is in a separate building, you'll need to install a ground rod as well.

Hope this helps.

My Garage is attached to the house and would be about a 40 foot run of cable that requires me drilling a hole through the block wall. No biggie there. What I had in mind was running to seperate 30 amp runs from the main panel to make up the 220 needed at the sub panel. Of course I will have to look up codes and what not and will have the job inspected, I just don't want to pay for some ones labour when I can do it myself. As for the other post, no offence taken. I know it's an involved job.
 
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Old 10-04-09, 08:51 AM
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You cannot just run multiple cables to make up your 240 volt circuits. You need to run all the circuit conductors together in the same cable or conduit.
 
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Old 10-04-09, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by pcboss View Post
You cannot just run multiple cables to make up your 240 volt circuits. You need to run all the circuit conductors together in the same cable or conduit.
Understood, what I meant was, can I grab the 220 via two 30 amp breakers from the main box, while keeping it to one cable or conduit?

This is not something I am going to do just by the seat of my pants. I'm trying to do as much research as possible before I actually do the job. I like to know how things are done before I even inquire about it to a professional. this way I know if I'm being taken for a ride or not.
 
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Old 10-04-09, 03:25 PM
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what I meant was, can I grab the 220 via two 30 amp breakers from the main box, while keeping it to one cable or conduit?
240v is fed from a single 2 pole breaker not two breakers. It is fed by individual wires in conduit normally. If plastic conduit 2 hots and a ground. What will this be used for? If it is 120/240 not just 240v you will also need a neutral.
 
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Old 10-04-09, 05:58 PM
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Originally Posted by ray2047 View Post
240v is fed from a single 2 pole breaker not two breakers. It is fed by individual wires in conduit normally. If plastic conduit 2 hots and a ground. What will this be used for? If it is 120/240 not just 240v you will also need a neutral.
Basically what I'd like to do is have the sub panel operate in the garage the same as it did as a stand alone in the house. I want to have a 220 supply available in the garage in order to run a 4000 watt heater and the rest of the panel available for a few outlets, one dedicted to a 110 volt welder and one for a 110 volt air compressor, and the rest just for a few regular outlets like some outside plugs. I'd just like to have the Garage power on it's own so I can wire right from the box in the Garage rather than trying to run a bunch of cable through the walls to the new main panel.
 
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Old 10-04-09, 06:09 PM
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I want to make it clear in here with subpanel{s}

You must run full 4 conductor cable from the main breaker to subpanel which it will have two hot conductors , netural and bare or green grounding conductor.

And you must keep the netural and ground seperated at the subpanel.

I know you mention old fuse panel really for myself I will just ditch it and get new subpanel due couple reason one is you will have more room to wire in second thing is that the old fuse box is pretty hard to run in subpanel format because you will need grounding bar add to it and float the netural bussbar I do not know if that can be done with old fuse box so new breaker box it is very easy to do it.

The heater will need 20 amp circuit unless stated by manufacter with diffrent size {you mention 4 KW heater size and that is straght 240 volts }

For rest of 120 volts circuit you will need GFCI receptale I will go with 20 amp each circuit and keep the light circuit seperated { I am not sure if Canada do require GFCI on light circuit or not so hang on one of our members is from Canada area so he will chime in with correct answer }

I suggest to run 60 amp breaker from the main panel to subpanel which you will need #6's

Merci,Marc
 
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Old 10-15-09, 07:19 AM
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I've decided to just go about the panel change for the time being and leave the secondary box for later. Anyway I was out looking at my meter when this came to mind: Am I going to have to dig a big hole an repalce conduit? The power in my area is all underground. There is a large 2" or more conduit coming out of the ground to the meter box, and a smaller diameter one coming back out of it. I'll assume the smaller one is the run going into my house. Seeing as I need to change the feed wire to one capable of 200 amps, am I going to have issues with the conduit?
 
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Old 10-15-09, 08:26 PM
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The smaller conduit will likely need to be replaced. The wire you need for 200 amps will be about the size of one of your fingers. (2/0 copper or 4/0 aluminum) which will need a 2" pipe.

Question for you though: Other than "because I can", why do you want to upgrade you panel to 200 amps? is your service not providing the power you need? Are you planing on adding a bunch more equipment that requires the increase amps? Food for thought: Most average sized homes do just fine with a 100 amp service.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Tolyn Ironhand View Post
The smaller conduit will likely need to be replaced. The wire you need for 200 amps will be about the size of one of your fingers. (2/0 copper or 4/0 aluminum) which will need a 2" pipe.

Question for you though: Other than "because I can", why do you want to upgrade you panel to 200 amps? is your service not providing the power you need? Are you planing on adding a bunch more equipment that requires the increase amps? Food for thought: Most average sized homes do just fine with a 100 amp service.
I'm at 60 amps right now and figure since the area was upgraded to 200 amps, why not go to the max? I have an electric fireplace that I can't operarte due to a lack of power as well as an air compressor and welder that need to be operated sparingly. Things like the Microwave and Fridge are on circuits with multiple other items. The house was built in 1965 so I guess things like fridges and what not were not on seperate circuits.I would like the additional power to allow these items as well as some additional outlets. Do you know how big I could get without having to change the conduit? I'm sure 150 amps would suffice as well.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 08:01 AM
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Given the 60 amp service you currently have I would suspect that any increase will cause you to need to upgrade the size of the conduit. What size conduit is installed now?
 
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Old 10-17-09, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by pcboss View Post
Given the 60 amp service you currently have I would suspect that any increase will cause you to need to upgrade the size of the conduit. What size conduit is installed now?
I'm not sure of the size of the conduit going into the house but it' appears to be 1/2 to 2/3 the size of the one coming up to the meter. The meter side is carrying 200 amps so it's over 2". I'm concerned about changing the conduit becuase I imagine I'd be messing arround with the foundation somewhat and I'm worried about causing a water problem seeing as it's under ground.
 
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Old 10-17-09, 09:23 AM
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You can abandon the old conduit and run a new one into the house above ground. You would come out of the meter can on the bottom and enter the house through the rim joist using an LB. Then, using a factory 90 degree bend, come into the new panel on the top.
 
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Old 10-20-09, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Tolyn Ironhand View Post
You can abandon the old conduit and run a new one into the house above ground. You would come out of the meter can on the bottom and enter the house through the rim joist using an LB. Then, using a factory 90 degree bend, come into the new panel on the top.

I went and had a look ant the conduit is actually 1.5 to 2 feet above ground. I guess I could air chisel it out, and put in the larger one, then re-cement it. Right now it's a plastic conduit from the box attached to the original metal conduit as it goes in through the wall. Can I use all plastic in the new installation or does it have to be metal going through the block wall into the house?
 
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Old 10-20-09, 01:01 PM
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Most codes allow PVC conduit in that situation, although sometimes local rules will dictate metal. If it's right next to a driveway with vehicular traffic you may need to use schedule 80 PVC, IMC (thin threaded steel), or RMC (heavy wall steel). If it's on the wall away from the drive, then schedule 40 PVC is usually okay.
 
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