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rbaake

Panel Question

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Besides the obvious issues with this panel, can someone tell me why the two wires from the SE lugs are supplying the 50 amp breaker at the lower right?

Panel is a SQ-D main servicing a one bedroom condo.

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That's how it's getting power to the lower bus.

The power comes in through the feeders and is then shuttled around to backfeed the 50-amp breaker, which sends it to the bus and all of the breakers below it.

What I can't see is whether or not the upper portion of the bus - the one with the two breakers on it - is fed directly from the main lugs. If so, then this is a type of split bus panel. If not, then its just odd.

A close up photo of the schematic on the left side of the panel would probably clear things up. (Learn to use your camera's macro mode.)

If Brian Goodman is paying attention, he might be familiar with this particular panel.

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But if it's a main, what or where do you turn it off? I would agree with it being a split buss, but the gap seen between the top two breakers and the lower group has connectors for circuit breakers. A split buss would have a more obvious gap. No?

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But if it's a main, what or where do you turn it off?

The power to the panel can be turned off at that 50 amp breaker (which should be secured with a clamp or screw for safety).

But I would not call that panel a main.

The main breaker will be just downstream from the meter, where ever that is.

That is why the rules for condo panels appear to be different, it is because they are usually subpanels. So for example, the 6 throw rule does not apply. There is a single main breaker elsewhere.

To me, it does not appear to be a split bus panel, bent maybe, but not split. [:)]

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So you turn off the 50 and the top two breakers stay hot. I agree that is probably is not a split buss. But there has to be another something somewhere. And, if there is a main somewhere else, why the feed to the 50?

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But if it's a main, what or where do you turn it off?

In my area, condo individual disconnects are grouped at the CT box or meter box, usually integrated with it in on enclosure.

Marc

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But if it's a main, what or where do you turn it off? I would agree with it being a split buss, but the gap seen between the top two breakers and the lower group has connectors for circuit breakers. A split buss would have a more obvious gap. No?

If it's a main (service disconnect), then each of the breakers fed directly from the main lugs would be main disconnects. You can have up to 6 of them.

In most of the split bus panels I've seen, there's no obvious gap between the main breakers and the other breakers.

I suspect that it's not a service disconnect.

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No mains, just a meter for each unit. I had no access to any common areas however.

If a sub panel, I would expect to see four wires coming in from the main box.

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No mains, just a meter for each unit. I had no access to any common areas however.

If a sub panel, I would expect to see four wires coming in from the main box.

There *should be* 4 wires to each box. But in most condos that I've seen, there aren't.

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So you turn off the 50 and the top two breakers stay hot. I agree that is probably is not a split buss. But there has to be another something somewhere. And, if there is a main somewhere else, why the feed to the 50?

I am suggesting ( not insisting, it doesn't matter that much to me [:)] ) that that 50 amp feeds the two bus bars and that the bus bars are not split. The top breakers would not stay energized.

It is certainly set up as a main disconnect, with the neutral bonding screw in place and the bare grounding wires on the neutral bus. So the conduit coming in at the top must be coming directly from the meter can. The conduit is grounding the equipment. It appears then to be a simple 50 amp service panel.

So if that's the case, reversed hot and neutral looks suspicious and needs correction, but what else is wrong?

Damaged panel box and a missing knockout.

The 50 amp (main?) breaker needs to be mechanically attached to the bus bars. We can't tell if it is.

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