Moving 8G wires from one panel to another?

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  #1  
Old 10-28-13, 06:49 AM
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Moving 8G wires from one panel to another?

I have 2 200A service panels. One is overloaded. Ive never had an issue with tripping it or anything since they are heavy non-continuous loads, but Id feel better if they could be moved to my other panel, which is currently at 122A. The circuits that need to be moved are 6 240V Dual pole 40A breaker types. These service 3 tankless water heaters, each requires 2 40A circuits. To move them, the wire will need to be extended by about 15 feet. It is 8/3 wire. What is the process to do this in terms of 'extending' wire? I have plenty of extra wire to do it, but I have no idea what product to use to properly, legally, and safely splice them to make them longer.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 08:36 AM
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It is 8/3 wire. What is the process to do this in terms of 'extending' wire? I have plenty of extra wire to do it, but I have no idea what product to use to properly, legally, and safely splice them to make them longer.
Remove the 8-3 cables from the panel and install a junction box/boxes. Extend the circuits with additional 8-3 cables to the other panel. Install fillers/panel blanks where the breakers are removed.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 08:44 AM
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OK, but what is the means of splicing? Its heavy stranded THHN type wire. Do I do it with some sort of bolted 'lug' or what? Surely you don't simply use 'wire nuts'?

Also, what kind of J-box do I use that will accommodate the size of this wire?
 
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Old 10-28-13, 09:00 AM
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OK, but what is the means of splicing? Its heavy stranded THHN type wire. Do I do it with some sort of bolted 'lug' or what? Surely you don't simply use 'wire nuts'?

Also, what kind of J-box do I use that will accommodate the size of this wire?
There are several ways to do this, but I would use a 4 11/16" square X 2 1/8" deep box for each circuit. I'd use the big blue wire nuts on the #8 Blk, Red and Wht conductors and a red wing nut on the #10 ground conductor with a pigtail to a green grounding screw.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 09:23 AM
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Is this legal to use?

Carlon 4 in. x 2 in. Junction Box-E989NNJ-CAR at The Home Depot

It precludes any grounding pigtails too, I think. I have enough room to mount a bigger box if I can get more circuits into it because there are 6 circuits that need to be moved. That would take 6 boxes like this. they can be mounted behind the wall where the panels are because it has a door and is accessible easily.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 10:21 AM
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If you put all the wires in a single box that would be a total of 36 conductors +1 for all grounds + 1 for all clamps X 3 (factor for #8)= 114 cubic inches. A 6X8X3 or 8X8X3 box should be large enough for all connections.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 10:34 AM
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The big question is whether I have enough 'space' in the panel for 6 double pole breakers. That will be 12 standard size spots. The load calculation indicates I have PLENTY of capacity, but I don't think I have 12 slots open. 6 to 8, sure....

The current panel went a little crazy with some circuits that probably could have been combined.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 10:51 AM
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How are you getting the amperage draw on each panel?

I'm afraid you're going to go from an ok situation and make things worse. You may create light flickering and power sags on electronics circuits.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 11:49 AM
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Ill list all of the things on this panel:

Panel (200A)
tankless water heater 17.25KW
tankless water heater 14KW
tankless water heater 12KW
5 ton ac
5 ton air handler
2 ton ac
2 ton air handler
stove
range
oven
disposal
dishwasher
water well
2400 sq foot general lighting
water well

Other panel (200A)
General Lighting 2400 sq feet
Three fridges

The issue is that the 17.25KW tankless is only running on half power now, and I just finished off a bathroom, so it needs to serve that as well as be hooked up properly with an additional 40A circuit. While ive never had tripping issues, that may not be the case when I put it into full service. I could simply move that one water heater to the first panel and teh general lighting as well and see how it goes.

Like I said, its never given me any problems as is, but its overloaded by NEC standards.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 12:22 PM
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The load calculation indicates I have PLENTY of capacity, but I don't think I have 12 slots open. 6 to 8, sure....
If you have 8 spaces, move 4 - 2 pole circuits. That should relieve the overloading on the other panel.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 12:32 PM
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Even though it hasnt tripped, its probably a good idea to balance it better anyway right? Or...fire up the last circuit and put the heater into service and see if it works OK. If it ain't broke don't fix it?
 
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Old 10-28-13, 12:58 PM
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Even though it hasnt tripped, its probably a good idea to balance it better anyway right? Or...fire up the last circuit and put the heater into service and see if it works OK. If it ain't broke don't fix it?
Personally, I'd move some load to the other panel. The tankless heaters are considered continuous loads, but in reality, they may never be on at the same time. On the other hand, they could easily all be on at the same time.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 05:01 PM
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That's what always threw me because the manufacturer for one of mine states specifically that is it classified as a 'non continuous load' because it is not running at full capacity for more than 3 hours. I ASSUMED (perhaps erroneously) that was true for the others, but either way, it is entirely possible all could be on at the same time. Im going to plan on moving at LEAST one of the 'bigger' ones, if not both big ones and leave the one small one on its current panel. That one is currently set up as a single 50A 240 circuit.
 
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Old 10-28-13, 05:41 PM
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the manufacturer for one of mine states specifically that is it classified as a 'non continuous load' because it is not running at full capacity for more than 3 hours.
That would only be true if the water was not running continuously for 3 hours, but reality is that it could.

Im going to plan on moving at LEAST one of the 'bigger' ones, if not both big ones and leave the one small one on its current panel.
That's what I would do too.
 
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Old 10-29-13, 01:51 PM
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Yeah, but that would require someone to be in the shower for 3 hours. I can personally promise that will not happen! LOL! GET OUT!
 
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Old 10-29-13, 06:25 PM
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Yeah, but that would require someone to be in the shower for 3 hours. I can personally promise that will not happen!
That's what I said. You do know how to run them out of the shower, right? Just go to the basement and valve off the hot water to that bathroom, it only takes a second of cold water in the shower during the winter to get them out.

WARNING: Do not try this at home unless you have a good lawyer (don't ask me how I know this) :NO NO NO:
 
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Old 10-29-13, 08:14 PM
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This seems detrimental to domestic tranquility.
 
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Old 11-04-13, 07:48 AM
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One more question....when I move these wires...

These panels are 'outdoor' panels, even though they are inside. These wires can be run straight to the panel just like it was an 'indoor' panel right? They don't need to go through a ton of conduit or anything right? Just punch the knockout and run them in to wire them up? Maybe throw in one of those grommmets for chafing just for good measure?
 
  #19  
Old 11-04-13, 07:51 AM
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Individual wires must always be contained in conduit or a wiring tray.
 
  #20  
Old 11-04-13, 07:54 AM
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These wires can be run straight to the panel just like it was an 'indoor' panel right? They don't need to go through a ton of conduit or anything right? Just punch the knockout and run them in to wire them up? Maybe throw in one of those grommmets for chafing just for good measure?
Assuming you are still using 8-3 NM cables, use NM cable (romex) connectors. The size of the hole will coincide with conduit sizes.
 
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Old 11-04-13, 07:58 AM
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Are those the metal ones or do they make plastic ones, because I have some 15 and 20 amp circuits that need to go into the panel as well. cant see using a single one for every single circuit.
 
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Old 11-04-13, 08:17 AM
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I prefer the metal ones, but the 15 and 20 amp circuits can probably use the plastic ones if that's what you want to use. The 8-3 cable can probably go through a 3/4" connector. I don't think anyone makes a plastic connector big enough for 8-3 cable.
 
  #23  
Old 11-04-13, 11:12 AM
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I asking because the way its setup (no doubt, against code) is I have the giant knockout in the top knocked out, and they just brought pretty much all of the wiring through that. Not sure how many, but enough to make the panel full. No romex connectors. Once inside the box they stripped the outer sheath. Still...id like to make the ones I move down there correct. I might have to pair my 8/3 wires....just for ease.
 
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Old 11-04-13, 02:20 PM
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I might have to pair my 8/3 wires....just for ease
I don't know of a connector that will take more than one 8-3 cable unless you can maybe find a 3/4" duplex connector. You can put two 12-2 or two 14-2 cables through one 1/2" connector.
 
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Old 11-07-13, 05:41 PM
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To get these wires from the second floor to the first, I have to go through a single 3/4" decking. Do I treat it just like wood studs where I drill a hole and pass the wires through, or do I have to have some sort of conduit? They used conduit on the other wires, but there is also a bundle or 20+ wires so maybe conduit was nice.

Do I need it or can I just pass the 6 8/3+G wires through and my 12/2 +g romex through without it?
 
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Old 11-07-13, 06:34 PM
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They used conduit on the other wires, but there is also a bundle or 20+ wires so maybe conduit was nice.

Do I need it or can I just pass the 6 8/3+G wires through and my 12/2 +g romex through without it?
Conduits are not necessary when NM cables pass through holes bored in wood.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 08:51 AM
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What about THHN types that still have the confining black sheath?
 
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Old 11-08-13, 09:34 AM
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What about THHN types that still have the confining black sheath?
Individual conductors are made and designated as THHN. The conductors used in cable assemblies are not. Are you asking about cables?
 
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Old 11-08-13, 12:12 PM
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What about THHN types that still have the confining black sheath?
If I understand correctly, you are referring to an NM cable. I believe it's 8-3 W/G in this case.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 12:38 PM
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I dunno. I have some wire here that is labeled 8/3 NM-B. It is a stranded wire. Its on a 50A breaker. Don't think that's kosher, but all I can do is put a 40A on it and hope for the best.
 

Last edited by agdodge4x4; 11-08-13 at 12:56 PM.
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Old 11-08-13, 01:13 PM
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I have some wire here that is labeled 8/3 NM-B
No it would be cable. Through out this thread you seem to have been confusing wire with cable.

Wire is a single conductor. Except for short lengths in a junction box it must be protected by a raceway such as conduit.

Cable is two or more conductors in a metallic or nonmetallic sheath. The wires in a cable may not be used outside of the sheath except for short lengths in junction boxes.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 01:14 PM
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The NM in 8/3 NM-B is what was being asked about - yes, this is a cable and not individual wires like THHN.

Edit: Whoops! Looks like Ray types faster than I do.
 
  #33  
Old 11-08-13, 03:19 PM
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OK...then this is all 8/3 + G CABLE. That's what it is. That does not require conduit, since it is sheathed. Right? Its treated just like, well, Romex....

So...for some tankless heaters, this cable comes out of the wall and straight into a water heater. My electrician installed disconnect for the extra cable he ran. So, the cable terminates in there....its in the wall and goes into the disconnect. Now, when I hook this up to the tankless heater, which will be a 12" cable going into the tankless, that has to be in a conduit right or is that incorrect? Can it just go from the disconnect (completely sheathed) and into the tankless?
 
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Old 11-08-13, 03:26 PM
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Tankless heaters I have seen have a non metallic whip (looks like NM-b). That can go unprotected into the disconnect.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 03:46 PM
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OK, here is what I need to do.

That CABLE needs to get into a box exactly the one you see. It will be mounted next to it on the next stud. How do I get that black cable to the new disconnect safely? Do I need to put it in some sort of conduit first?


 

Last edited by agdodge4x4; 11-08-13 at 04:43 PM.
  #36  
Old 11-08-13, 06:19 PM
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OK...then this is all 8/3 + G CABLE. That's what it is. That does not require conduit, since it is sheathed. Right? Its treated just like, well, Romex....
NM cable in this application needs no conduit. NM cable is generically called romex. You get the black NM cable (aka romex) into the disconnect through a romex connector installed in a knockout, probably 3/4" would work. I would then use flexible metal conduit and THHN conductors between the disconnect and the heater utilizing the appropriate squeeze type connectors on each end of the flex. IF you use more black 8-3 NM B cable between the disconnect and the heater, you must also use the romex connectors where the cable passes through the knockouts. The cable in the picture is passing through a raw knockout with no connector, that is wrong.
 
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Old 11-09-13, 07:41 AM
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Yes, I know its wrong. Its also ugly as sin. I did not do it, its been like that for 13 years from the original electrician/owner. There is a lot of 'well, I don't have that part so Ill just make it work for now and fix it later.' Im the 'later' part.

Id like to staple that wire to a stud to secure it from tearing out drywall when it 'moves'. If I can secure some PVC conduit in the wall, can I strip the black off of the cable to the wall and slide them in the PVC and then hook that to the second disconnect? It would be more secure and look a lot nicer.
 
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Old 11-09-13, 08:18 AM
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If I can secure some PVC conduit in the wall, can I strip the black off of the cable to the wall and slide them in the PVC and then hook that to the second disconnect?
No, the sheathing must stay on the cable till it enters the disconnect or a junction box. I don't see why you need conduit to enter the disconnect, why don't you just use a romex connector.

Id like to staple that wire to a stud to secure it from tearing out drywall when it 'moves'.
When it moves? How often does it move? Why does it move?
 
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Old 11-09-13, 10:01 AM
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It moves if you service the the water heater. I could drywall it up real nice against the cable if it was secure. Otherwise, itll just chip it out. No reason I can't use romex connectors into the disconnect, just trying to 'dress it up' a little. Ill probably go that route becuase its easier anyway.

Next question....I will be moving the cables originally discussed in this thread, and all 6 will be in an 8x8 junction box for splicing. I was wondering about using 'Polaris Connectors'. They look really sleek and secure, but im not sure which ones I need for this size wire and the configuration that is needed. I guess I would need 6, which might be pricey, but im curious for a link.

Im also curious for a link to Home depot for the proper sized wire nuts to use if I decide to go that route.
 
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Old 11-09-13, 10:07 AM
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You can use the large blue wire nuts to splice two #6 or #8 wires together.

You need a disconnect for the thankless, unless there is one in the unit.
 
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