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Physcal location of Main LC in relation to the service enterance.

Physcal location of Main LC in relation to the service enterance.

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  #1  
Old 09-16-13, 06:25 AM
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Physcal location of Main LC in relation to the service enterance.

It looks like our new build is going to be a go! Now comes the final planning stuff so I can get my permit pulled and our utility provider to start trenching.

I have looked through the NEC and searched this forum (and others) regarding the location of my main load center in the house. The only logical place to up the meter is on the NE corner of the house due to the nature of our lot. This wall is a family room wall, and I am not too excited about having the LC in the room for aesthetic reasons. What is the official word on how far a panel can be located from the service entrance? I have found wording saying a "reasonable distance", but is there a max distance? How would I get around putting the panel in the family room? Is a CPVC pipe run through the ceiling to the utility room a possibility? Could it be run under the concrete floor?
 
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Old 09-16-13, 06:46 AM
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The power company will determine where the drop or lateral should go. Where I live the main panel is almost always outside directly under the meter socket.

What is the official word on how far a panel can be located from the service entrance?
Usually six feet or less for a unfused line however you can put a main disconnect at the meter or use a meter socket that is combined with a main disconnect and there is no limit on distance.
 
  #3  
Old 09-16-13, 06:58 AM
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Usually six feet or less for a unfused line however you can put a main disconnect at the meter or use a meter socket that is combined with a main disconnect and there is no limit on distance.
That's what I did. Main disconnect is outside at the meter, while the load center is at the other end of the house, almost 40 feet away. The cable runs through my crawl space.
 
  #4  
Old 09-16-13, 07:20 AM
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Usually six feet or less for a unfused line however you can put a main disconnect at the meter or use a meter socket that is combined with a main disconnect and there is no limit on distance.
This is the typical solution most used, a disconnect at the meter.

Is a CPVC pipe run through the ceiling to the utility room a possibility?
NO, ABSOLUTELY NOT! You cannot use CPVC pipe for electrical wiring. You should use PVC conduit and approved PVC conduit fittings which are U.L. Listed for electrical wiring. Another option is to use SER cable.

Could it be run under the concrete floor?
Yes. If you run PVC conduit under a concrete slab, the 6 foot measurement doesn't start till the conduit emerges up through the slab and the service entrance conduit/wiring enters the envelope of the home. You do not need the disconnect at the meter using this method.
 
  #5  
Old 09-16-13, 07:24 AM
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I just talked to my inspector... He said the LC has to be directly behind the meter. Humf.
 
  #6  
Old 09-16-13, 07:38 AM
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I just talked to my inspector... He said the LC has to be directly behind the meter. Humf.
Perhaps the local AHJ has amendments to the NEC, of course this must be by ordinance. Frequently some inspectors will arbitrarily just make up these amendments as they go when they really have never been enacted by ordinance so you could ask the inspector for the text and number of the ordinance so you can research it yourself. This would possibly alienate the inspector. When starting a new project you probably don't want to do this. The next best option is to consult the power company on location of the meter socket. The power company usually determines the location with an allowance of sometimes up to 10 feet in either direction. If the power company is doing the excavation and installation of the undergrpound service lateral, there is also a possibility they will let you find a new location for the meter socket if you agree to pay for any additional footage of the lateral. You'll never know if you don't ask.
 
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Old 09-16-13, 08:32 AM
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Or as I said earlier just put it outside next to the meter, local code permitting.
 
  #8  
Old 09-17-13, 10:12 AM
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The "Main" circuit-breaker (MCB) that connects to the "Load" terminals of the Meter-Socket serves two purposes- (1), it's the Service Disconnecting Means and (2) , it's the Over-current Protective Device for the Conductors that terminate on the MCB "Load" terminals.

The Conductors that terminate on the "LIne" terminals of the MCB are "Service Conductors" ; the Conductors that terminate on the "Load" terminals are "Feeder Conductors" which are Conductors between the Service Equiptment and the individual "Branch-Circuits" of a "Load Center"

There is no limit on the distance that the Feeder Conductors can extend from the Service Equiptment to their termination-point on a Load Center in a Code-approved location.

A Code-approved "Wiring Method" is necesary for routing the Feeder Conductors between the two termination-points , and the constuction of the building often determines which WM is best.

I once installed Feeders in a multi Dwelling-Unit structure for a builder who "wanted the best", so the we used 2" Rigid Steel Conduit as the WM for each of the Feeders with the Conduit implaced in the basement floor concrete slab.
 
  #9  
Old 09-17-13, 03:44 PM
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There is no limit on the distance that the Feeder Conductors can extend from the Service Equiptment to their termination-point on a Load Center in a Code-approved location.
In this case there is a restriction, the inspector has already told the OP the panel must be directly behind the meter although that isn't a NEC requirement.

scubawes


I just talked to my inspector... He said the LC has to be directly behind the meter. Humf
 
  #10  
Old 09-17-13, 04:50 PM
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And did you ask if it could be outside next to the meter? There shouldn't be any requirement to put more then one breaker that goes to a subpanel in it.
 
  #11  
Old 09-18-13, 08:07 AM
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Is the inspector's placing a "restriction" an arbitrary decision, or is he citing an NEC violation? ; if his citation is indeed based on the NEC , what is relevant Code Article?.

The crux of this issue is the obvious distinction between "Service Conductors" and "Feeder Conductors" , and both are well-defined in the NEC.

Just Curious; "scubawes" , where did you finds the words "reasonable distance"?.
 
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