I need more breaker slots


Old 10-06-09, 12:04 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: WI
Posts: 3
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I need more breaker slots

Okay, I'm a carpenter, so I do not know the proper terminology...

I have a 200amp service in my workshop where there are only 8 avalible breaker slots (4 on each side) in the panel and they are all full.

I need additional slots.

The panel has 24 knock outs (12 on each side), but the problem is that the interior of the box only has the 8 avalible slots inside the panel.

The panel is a Cutler Hammer, can I find a new interior breaker load center so I don't have to replace the entire panel?

If so, where, and what should I be looking for?

Sponsored Links
Old 10-06-09, 12:08 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 15,144
Received 84 Votes on 72 Posts
I don't remember ever hearing of a 200 amp panel that small, but I haven't seen everything either.

You could add a subpanel to get more breaker space as long as the service will support the additional loads. You would need to open up 2adjacent slots for the new 2 pole breaker to feed the sub.
Old 10-06-09, 06:04 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: WI
Posts: 3
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The main issue is that I need to add a 220v 30amp service.
I currently have two other 220v breakers, so there is half of my available slots already.

Could I swap out the other 4 110v breakers with 2 duplex breakers to gain the space for the needed 220 breaker?

I had a older work space that an electrician add a small panel with a couple duplex breakers. I really did not have any problems with tripping them except for the one ran the compressor.

Are there any cons in relation to duplex breakers that I do not know about?

Thank you,
Old 10-06-09, 06:36 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Near Lansing, Michigan
Posts: 10,944
Received 43 Votes on 41 Posts
Originally Posted by kmolls View Post
Are there any cons in relation to duplex breakers that I do not know about?
They are okay as long as the panel is rated to support them. The label on the breaker panel or the model number can usually tell you how many if any tandems are allowed.

The problem with using them in an unrated panel is that they may not fit exactly right on the bus bar which will eventually arc and burn.

Is there any way you could post a picture of the inside of the panel on a photo sharing site? Like pcboss, I'm confused about the description of the panel.
Old 10-07-09, 10:52 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: WI
Posts: 3
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks for your help. I took a few photos of the panel.
The first is of the panel label, the second is of the panel with the door open, and the last is of the interior of the panel.

Let me know what you think!
Thanks again.

Old 10-07-09, 03:48 PM
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Saginaw, MI
Posts: 33
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thats strange theres 24 slots in the panel cover, and only enough space on the bus bar for 8. Seems like someone cobbled that panel together from spare parts. If it was mine I would probably go with the subpanel, or upgrade option over installing tandem breakers. If you use tandem breakers (I couldn't read the print in the picture, so I don't even know if it says tandems allowed) you might end up back on the forum in a year or two asking the same question again.

I also noticed the two double pole breakers, I think those white wires should be coded as hot?
Old 10-07-09, 06:42 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 13,604
Received 203 Votes on 180 Posts
Odd the cover has the KO's but then again I have seen other panels with extra although they only have 2 or 4 extra.

Put a subpanel next to this panel and feed it with a 100 amp breaker through a 2" offset nipple. Move 2 of your 120 volt loads to the new panel to make room for the new 100 amp breaker. I suggest buying a 100 Cuttler Hammer CH for your sub panel.

I just looked at your label again and it says you may use breakers CHT which are tandem breakers. So you could make room that way as well but adding the sub panel like I posted above you won't need to buy any anyway.
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: