downgrading a 100 amp subpanel

Reply

  #1  
Old 06-28-14, 05:37 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 2
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
downgrading a 100 amp subpanel

I bought a home that came with a spa. We sold the spa and now have the existing wiring that I wanted to use for gazebo lighting instead.

Here is the setup:
  • 100 amp (double 50) circuit breaker at the main panel extends with a large cable (? gauge) through the attic to the other side of the house
  • On the far side of the house the cable comes down to connect with a small box with another 100amp (double 50) circuit breaker. This acted as the main switch for the spa.
  • From there they buried wire in PVC until in reached the spa


What I want to do:
  • I need a 15 or 20 amp circuit for the gazebo wiring for lights and an outdoor fan.
  • I am thinking of changing out the 100amp circuit breaker at the small box for a 15 or 20 amp breaker
  • Then I will run 12-2 UF-B wire to the area of the yard where the gazebo is an place an electrical box and go from there.


Is it as easy as just switching out the circuit breakers from this small box/subpanel?

Attached is an image of the small box/subpanel
 
Attached Images  
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 06-28-14, 06:50 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 13,057
Received 73 Votes on 65 Posts
Welcome to the forums!

First off your breakers are 50 amp, two pole breakers, not 100 amp. You do not add up each pole.

Your plan is sound. You should be able to just change out the breaker that you want to take your new circuit(s) out of. Just make sure to use the same brand breaker that is currently installed.

One note: I hope the picture of the small panel your posted is not outside. That is not an outdoor rated panel. If it is outside, it needs to be changed.
 
  #3  
Old 06-28-14, 07:30 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,996
Received 39 Votes on 34 Posts
Sure looks like an indoor panel mounted on stucco outside.
 
  #4  
Old 06-28-14, 10:33 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 2
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes, that panel is outside. Like I said, this came with the home. I guess the inspection should have made mention of this.

So swap for an outdoor panel, then the breaker. Anything else I should look for in a breaker? Why does it need to be the same brand?
 
  #5  
Old 06-28-14, 11:02 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
So swap for an outdoor panel, then the breaker.
No need for a panel. All you need is an outdoor 4X4 junction box and change the breaker at the main panel to 20 amps.
 
  #6  
Old 06-29-14, 05:51 AM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 13,057
Received 73 Votes on 65 Posts
Why does it need to be the same brand?
Panels and breakers are listed to be compatible with each other. Installing an unapproved breaker in a panel is a code violation even if the breaker fits. If you are changing the panel, then just use a breaker of that same brand.

You could do as Ray suggested. IMO installing a small outdoor panel will give you more flexibility later if you ever want to add more circuits.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: