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Surface mounted breaker boxes - Holmes show


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maybe its a Canada thing? On The Holmes HGTV show filmed around Toronto I think you frequently see the home's main breaker panel flat / surface mounted typically on a basement wall on a larger piece of plywood.

Most of the ones in the U.S, seem to be flush mounted, that is recessed into a wall. Is that US practice a code thing?

The Canada style makes the wires easier to get to as they are clearly visible, but maybe more likely to be damaged

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You'll see a lot of things on Mike Holmes show that differ from what you see in the field. Some differences (like the electrical panels) are regional. Others are just plain wrong. I caught a few minutes of a show last night where he said any exterior stairway of 3 or more steps is required to have a footing. Huh? I'm convinced that sometimes he just makes stuff up so he can keep talking in front of the camera.

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Don't forget the Mike is in Canada where the standards can be quite a bit different than here in the US.

He is in Guelph, Ontario near Toronto. His sparky contractor mounts the breaker panel on its side on a blank wall in a full basement. Around here, that is only done if it's an upgrade in a tight space. But it is permitted.

They do all the framing with screws. Hopefully anyone copying them will use the expensive grades of screws, not just cheap deck screws.

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I always worry about framing with screws in my own work because of expansion and contraction - and the number of screws that break because of too much force applied. It seems to me to be a bad move. One good building settle, the screws break, and there can be failure.

Anyway, I concur that in the US, surface or flush mount is OK per code. It is standard for panels to flush mounted for residences. Commercial panels are typically surface mounted. There is no telling what any particular engineer will spec for a certain building though. He can spec flush or surface mounted as he desires.

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