Is this sub panel wired wrong?


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Old 06-05-14, 03:50 PM
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Is this sub panel wired wrong?

Hello,

Attached is a photograph of a subpanel in an outbuilding. I am told that it was wired by a professional electrician. I am confused because I thought a sub panel needed to have separate neutral and ground bus bars. Any thoughts on whether this has been wired correctly?

Thanks for the help!

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Last edited by PJmax; 06-05-14 at 03:59 PM. Reason: Reoriented picture
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Old 06-05-14, 03:55 PM
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You are right, as well as the feed must have two hots, a neutral and a grounding wire. All the neutrals to one buss, grounds to the other one. Green screw is to be removed from the buss bar and there must be a separate grounding electrode to a properly installed pair of grounding rods.

I can't make out what the red and yellow bee's nest is at the top of the box.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 04:04 PM
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That service cable coming in the top would need three insulated wires and a ground.
Those two bars currently in use should be used for neutral only and an additional bar needs to be added for the ground wires along with a ground rod.

I see SER cable coming into the top of the panel. What does that connect to outside.... a meter, a drop from the house ?

This may not be a sub panel.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 04:08 PM
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Thanks for the replies. The panel in questuon is controlled by a 100 amp breaker off of the main (in a separate building).
 
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Old 06-05-14, 04:12 PM
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Ok.... then it is a sub panel and the cable connecting it is incorrect.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 06:38 PM
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I see SER cable coming into the top of the panel.
I don't see it, all I see is a SEU cable.

I am told that it was wired by a professional electrician.
I learned long ago that many electricians working for electrical contractors do not keep current with the code. A lot do, but many don't.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 07:10 PM
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Prior to the 08 code it was legal to feed a panel in an outbuilding with a 3 wire feeder if no metallic paths existed between the buiildings.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 07:26 PM
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I agree with PCBoss. Depending on when it was installed and what code-cycle your locale was using at the time, the feeder could be correct.

Another issue though is that the first panel in a building needs to either 1) have a main disconnect, or 2) have fewer than 6 breakers/switches. In this case, a main-breaker panel should have been used.

Also, nowadays, a separate ground rod is required in a detached building with a panel. Though I don't know when that requirement came about.
 
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Old 06-05-14, 07:36 PM
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The panel can is not grounded as is, with the 3 wire feed. You can see the grounding strap not connected to the neutral bar.
 
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Old 06-06-14, 03:50 AM
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The panel was actually installed in 2006 at which time the cable to the subpanel was run underground through plastic conduit (about 100 feet from main residence).
 
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Old 06-06-14, 08:10 AM
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The panel was actually installed in 2006
So not a code violation if no other metallic pathways. IIRC 2008 was when 4 wire required.However the six throw rule is a lot older.
cable to the subpanel was run underground through plastic conduit
Not a code compliance issue but another mark against the electrician if the conduit is continuous. Best practice is individual conductors. Makes pulling a lot easier to use individual conductors .
 

Last edited by ray2047; 06-06-14 at 08:32 AM.
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Old 06-06-14, 01:25 PM
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SE-U cable cannot be used underground.
 
 

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