Newbie Question hooking up to a meter panel


Old 05-14-14, 11:44 AM
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Newbie Question hooking up to a meter panel


Be gentle on the newbie here. I have minimal experience with electrical up stream before a main panel.

Back story: Just built my new mancave (shop) and now am ready to add power. Electric company said I can just add a 100amp breaker to the meter box.

I love the idea of have the disconnect on the meter panel, just am not 100% sure of the proper installation. Do I need to run a ground from there to the new panel or do I ground the panel?

Once I have my panel powered, I am good to go wiring outlets, lights etc.

FYI - I have touched based with a certified electrician to do the work, but I like to be knowledgeable myself!

Thanks for any insights!!
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Old 05-14-14, 12:09 PM
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Is this a new structure detached from the house or is this within the existing house? You'll need 4 wires; 2 hots, 1 neutral and 1 ground between the existing main panel (at the meter from your description) and the new subpanel. I question whether you need 100 amps though, have you done a load calculation? In the new subpanel you'll need to add a ground bar. DO NOT install the bonding strap or screw to bond the neutral to the panel box, the neutral and grounds must be kept separate after the first disconnect after the meter where the neutral is grounded one time only.
Old 05-14-14, 12:26 PM
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Thanks for the feedback. Yes detached from my house about 160' run. My meter has a shut off panel which has a 200 amp breaker to my house, 30 amp and then can handle 2 more breakers. The plan is to utilize 2 slots for the 100 amp to my shop. 100 amp is initially over kill (yes), but I do plan on having HVAC, welder etc, so I figured 100 amp will cover the needs.

Good to know. I know everything post a main panel has the neutral/ground need to be kept seperatly but wasn't sure how that works in this scenario.
Old 05-14-14, 12:29 PM
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I can just add a 100amp breaker to the meter box
No, in your service panel.


Single Family Dwelling Load Calculator

Unless it will have electric heat 60 amps should be enough. Until recently many houses had 60 amps only.
Old 05-14-14, 12:38 PM
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The plan is to add a mini split system to the shop once sealed and insulated.
Old 05-14-14, 03:51 PM
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You'll also need to drive 2 ground rods and a #6 copper to the shop panel and any other electrodes you may have.
Old 05-14-14, 06:51 PM
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You (or the electrician) will run 4 conductors from the main panel (meter) (H-H-N-G). Likely will be underground rated cable, but could be PVC conduit with individual conductors. At the shop, you'll have a panel with a main disconnect and enough slots to handle current and future loads with a few extras too. As wirenut mentioned, a ground rod will be driven outside the shop as a supplemental ground.

Other than the digging/trenching, should be a pretty easy project!

While the trench is open, you may want to drop an extra 3/4" conduit for internet, cable TV, and/or telephone. Include a pull-cord, and you'll be future-proofed.

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