Cabin wiring

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  #1  
Old 10-18-13, 05:05 AM
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Cabin wiring

I'm wanting to put a 12' x 30' pre fab cabin in my backyard as an office/storage/ beer drinking area. I'm wanting to run 60 amp service to it. My house was built in 56 and has a 70 amp main breaker panel that is full. What's the best way to do it? I'm going to do it by code and pull a permit to do it right. I'm thinking hook to meter with 6-3 uf b to a disconnect under meter, then I would have pvc conduit running from disconnect around a corner to the back of the house. It would need to run 10' through conduit along house then go straight down into 24" trench. It would then run direct buried 30' straight along the house. Then a 90 degree turn and run for 20 or so feet to the cabin into a 100 amp panel with a 60 amp main breaker. Would all this be to code? I also have no idea how to draw a diagram for the permit application.. Also, would my meter have hookups for this or will I probably have to get my poco to install a new meter? thanks for any help.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 07:26 AM
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It is extremely unlikely you need 60 amps. You can not connect it to the meter because it is unsafe to run an unfused circuit more then a few feet and the meter is unlikely to have two sets of lugs. The only correct way is to run it as a branch circuit from your breaker or fuse box.

into a 100 amp [sub]panel with a 60 amp main breaker.
The subpanel should be on a branch circuit. That breaker is what provides protection. The breaker at the panel is only a disconnect therefore does not need to be downsized.

If you use conduit best practice is to use individual conductors such as THWN.

Lets start over. Tell us what loads the building will have, type of main panel you have, and if you have any open spaces in your panel.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 08:41 AM
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My house was built in 56 and has a 70 amp main breaker panel that is full.
If this is the original service to the house, the service is 57 years old and needs to be replaced and upgraded before you should be adding load to it. It's not likely a 70 amp service would have spare capacity for a new building if that new building has much more than just lights.

would my meter have hookups for this or will I probably have to get my poco to install a new meter?
Even if a newer meter socket, no, it would not have terminals or lugs for a second feed to a disconnect. Ray is right, the new building should be fed as a branch feeder from the main panel. Ray is also right that the first step in all of this is to determine the load of the new building.

What power company do you have, where in Illinois are you located? Most power companies will not upgrade the service equipment for the homeowner.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 11:08 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

Originally Posted by CasualJoe
What power company do you have, where in Illinois are you located?
Tuscola, IL is on I-57 not far south of Champaign, on a line from Indianapolis througe Springfield, IL to Hannibal, MO. The POCO is Ameren CIPS.

I also have no idea how to draw a diagram for the permit application.. Also, would my meter have hookups for this or will I probably have to get my poco to install a new meter?
Originally Posted by CasualJoe
Most power companies will not upgrade the service equipment for the homeowner.
The permit application for upgrading your service, including any required drawings, will almost always be done by the licensed master electrician who will be doing the work.
 
  #5  
Old 10-18-13, 12:41 PM
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I know at Least the overhead line has been replaced in the last 5 years. ok, thanks for the clairification. The building is going to have heat, ac, a computer, lights, a full size fridge, a decent size air compresso. I want at least 3 20 amp circuits in the subpanel. Alright, so I need to wire a new, larger main panel in. I was trying to avoid that, but it needs done any way. I will get witht the power company and make sure I have 100 amp service or more. Thanks
 
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Old 10-18-13, 12:44 PM
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In your initial post you mentioned "disconnect", then you state the drop was replaced within 5 years. Do you have a disconnect for the house at the meter base? If so, are there breakers in that box? I don't see them upgrading the drop without upgrading the service entrance, although it is possible.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 12:48 PM
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I will get with the power company and make sure I have 100 amp service or more.
No need to do that. The electrician will handle that. But in any event it is very unlikely any modern drop is less then 100 amp and everything else is your responsibility to change with the exception of the meter.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 10-18-13 at 03:35 PM.
  #8  
Old 10-18-13, 12:58 PM
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Ray, I'm going to be doing this work my self. I will be calling the power company if I need to. All my friend is doing is looking it over before the inspector. I will go and see if there is a disconnect near the meter.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 02:04 PM
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No disconnect on the outside off the meter. The meter says it is 60 amp with no fuses. Should the main breaker not be 70 amp then? I'm not sure if the breaker box is the original or not. It is defiantly old. I'm starting to think a new meter and main panel is the best way to go here.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 03:15 PM
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I'm starting to think a new meter and main panel is the best way to go here.
Yes. That's what CasualJoe suggested in the third post, and the rest of us have been supporting.

That work should require a permit from your local jurisdiction. Not the power company - they don't have the authority to issue permits.

I'm going to be doing this work my self.
Most jurisdictions will only issue permits for service entrance work to licensed master electricians.
Originally Posted by Nashkat1
The permit application for upgrading your service, including any required drawings, will almost always be done by the licensed master electrician who will be doing the work.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 03:42 PM
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Ok, thanks for the help. I will talk to my electrician buddy and see if he could do it or suggest a guy for me. Does anyone know what a good price for this would be?
 
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Old 10-18-13, 03:46 PM
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Here it would be $1500-$3000 for a simple swap but prices can vary considerably based on region an actual amount of work involved. Just for our curiosity post some pictures of your current service. http://www.doityourself.com/forum/li...-pictures.html
 

Last edited by Nashkat1; 10-18-13 at 04:24 PM. Reason: 15000-$3000 >>> $1500-$3000
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Old 10-18-13, 04:53 PM
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I will get some pics up tomorrow. Do you just want pics of the meter box and breaker panel? That's a pretty penny. Could I just have the electrician install a new meter box and hookup the new panel and then I wire in all the breakers? Thanks
 
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Old 10-18-13, 05:10 PM
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Do you just want pics of the meter box and breaker panel?
With the cover removed from the breaker panel.

Could I just have the electrician install a new meter box and hookup the new panel and then I wire in all the breakers?
That is all tied together and not really easily separated out plus it is his name on the permit and his license on the line if you screw up so most will just say no. From a practical point you will have no electric till the installation is complete. The electrician can do it in a day. Unlikely you could finish it in a day. You might want to have a completely new service installed and then when that is complete and power transferred to it just connect the existing box as a subpanel.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 05:48 PM
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You might want to have a completely new service installed and then when that is complete and power transferred to it just connect the existing box as a subpanel.
If it's still up to today's standards. Otherwise, you could have it hooked in and leave it until you got everything moved to your new panel. That way you'd only be without power on one circuit at a time as you moved them.

That's a pretty penny.
That's in the ballpark for what we charge here. Consider that the permit fee is likely to be $500 or more and that he must coordinate with the power company for the shutdown and reconnect. That's really why it takes a day.

In 1983, I decided it was better to let a friend of mine who was set up for this work do mine for me. I had the new panel hanging with breakers and circuits in it, and the feed pipe stubbed through the wall. He supplied the meter base and the mast, wired everything up, moved the triplex to the new mast, waited for the POCO to bring him a new meter, and installed and sealed that. When I got home I threw the main breaker on and started energizing and testing my circuits. A couple of days later he stopped back by for his check.

That was $800. Thirty years ago.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 06:48 PM
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Tuscola, IL is on I-57 not far south of Champaign, on a line from Indianapolis througe Springfield, IL to Hannibal, MO. The POCO is Ameren CIPS.
That's what I was looking for. I am very familiar with Ameren and all their operating units, CIPS, CILCO, IP and UE. I fish with a number of Ameren engineers and line supervisors, several from CIPS and former CIPS. They definitely will not replace the meter socket for you and they are definitely picky about the meter socket you use and the specifications to which it is installed. The socket specs and all the rules are in their service manual. If you'd like, I can furnish a link to it.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 06:51 PM
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I will get with the power company and make sure I have 100 amp service or more.
No disconnect on the outside off the meter. The meter says it is 60 amp with no fuses. Should the main breaker not be 70 amp then? I'm not sure if the breaker box is the original or not. It is defiantly old. I'm starting to think a new meter and main panel is the best way to go here.
The building is going to have heat, ac, a computer, lights, a full size fridge, a decent size air compressor. I want at least 3 20 amp circuits in the subpanel.
Not having seen a full load calculation of the new cabin or existing home, I think I'd recommend a new 200 amp service in your home and about a 60 amp service to the cabin.
 
  #18  
Old 10-18-13, 06:51 PM
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Looks like the permit fee would only be $35. You can check out the permits here. Come To Stay Tuscola, IL Building Department
 
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Old 10-18-13, 07:00 PM
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Ok, thanks for the help. I will talk to my electrician buddy and see if he could do it or suggest a guy for me. Does anyone know what a good price for this would be?
As long as we are guessing, I'll guess to replace your existing service with a new 200 amp service to be in the neighborhood of $1,600 to $1,800, permit included. No wiring to the cabin included.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 07:03 PM
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Most jurisdictions will only issue permits for service entrance work to licensed master electricians.
This is Illinois and not in the Chicago area. With a few downstate exceptions, just about anyone can take out a permit and do the work.
 
  #21  
Old 10-18-13, 07:07 PM
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Joe, a link would be appreciated. Why so much amperage for the new service? We never break the current 70 amp main. I would like to upgrade the main panel to 100 amps and run a 60 amp sub in the cabin. If that is not feasible then I will go with a 200 amp service upgrade. It is a small 1500 square foot house so we don't use much electricity. Thanks for the help.
 
  #22  
Old 10-18-13, 07:26 PM
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Here's the manual.

http://www.ameren.com/ServiceManual/...viceManual.pdf

Why so much amperage for the new service? We never break the current 70 amp main
I have no idea what your current load is and I know a 200 amp service just costs a few dollars more than a smaller service. Insurance companies like a 200 amp service too. If you want to save a few bucks, go with a 125 amp service. Talk to your electrician buddy too, see what his advice is. I am guessing a 125 amp service to be about $1,200 to $1,500.
 
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