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Condo electrical panel


ctgo4it
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I inspected a condo this morning (I haven't done a lot of condos). The electric panel had no main cutoff. After much searching I found the main by the electrical meters around the side of the building (each building has 10 units in it). Now, as far as I remember, a shutoff is needed anywhere it takes more than 2 (?) to cut off all power. Is that correct? Should I call out the fact that there is no shutoff, or is the fact that there are 2 rows enough?

Thanks

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20071210112535_panel.jpg

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No,

The question about the shutoff involves 6 throws or less; not two, and it doesn't apply to a sub-panel. That's a sub-panel. You have a single main disconnect at the meter and there is no requirement for a single main disconnect past that. I can't enlarge that photo very well to be able to see if it's properly configured. Are the grounded (neutral) conductors and equipment-grounding conductors (grounds) isolated from one another on separate buses and was the bonding strap, screw, bar, etc. left off so that the neutrals are isolated from the enclosure and the grounds?

The question about the shutoff involves 6 throws or less; not two, and it doesn't apply to a sub-panel.

OT - OF!!!

M.

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Originally posted by hausdok

No,

The question about the shutoff involves 6 throws or less; not two, and it doesn't apply to a sub-panel. That's a sub-panel. You have a single main disconnect at the meter and there is no requirement for a single main disconnect past that. I can't enlarge that photo very well to be able to see if it's properly configured. Are the grounded (neutral) conductors and equipment-grounding conductors (grounds) isolated from one another on separate buses and was the bonding strap, screw, bar, etc. left off so that the neutrals are isolated from the enclosure and the grounds?

The question about the shutoff involves 6 throws or less; not two, and it doesn't apply to a sub-panel.

OT - OF!!!

M.

I wasn't sure if it was 2 or 6 (actually I thought 5, hence the '?').

I guess you're right in considering it a sub-panel, as the ground and neutral were seperated. Here is the pic resized, hopefully a little better.

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20071210115710_panel2.jpg

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Originally posted by ctgo4it

I inspected a condo this morning (I haven't done a lot of condos). The electric panel had no main cutoff. After much searching I found the main by the electrical meters around the side of the building (each building has 10 units in it). Now, as far as I remember, a shutoff is needed anywhere it takes more than 2 (?) to cut off all power. Is that correct? ?

That is correct. Except that the switch by the meter fulfills that function. Look at:

408.36(A) Exception No. 1

Individual protection for a lighting and appliance panelboard shall not be required if the panelboard feeder has overcurrent protection not greater than the rating of the panelboard.

Should I call out the fact that there is no shutoff, or is the fact that there are 2 rows enough?

Two rows? I don't understand the question.

The breaker at the meter is all that you need. The panel in your picture doesn't need a local main disconnect.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Originally posted by hausdok

No,

The question about the shutoff involves 6 throws or less; not two, and it doesn't apply to a sub-panel. That's a sub-panel. You have a single main disconnect at the meter and there is no requirement for a single main disconnect past that. I can't enlarge that photo very well to be able to see if it's properly configured. Are the grounded (neutral) conductors and equipment-grounding conductors (grounds) isolated from one another on separate buses and was the bonding strap, screw, bar, etc. left off so that the neutrals are isolated from the enclosure and the grounds?

The question about the shutoff involves 6 throws or less; not two, and it doesn't apply to a sub-panel.

OT - OF!!!

M.

Regarding the six throws, vs. two throws:

The NEC (at least for now) classifies panels as either "power panelboards" or "lighting and appliance branch circuit panelboards." Each has slightly different rules. An L&A panelboard has more than 10% of its breakers protecting lighting and appliance branch circuits. (An L&A branch circuit is 30 amps or less and contains a neutral.) A power panelboard has 10% or fewer of its breakers protecting L&A circuits.

L&A panelboards can have no more than two main breakers according to 408.36(A). That's probably where Abe got the reference.

The six-breaker requirement is for the whole service, not necessarily for any panel in particular. (230.71)

If that all isn't confusing enough, this whole subject is going to change with the 2008 NEC when the distinction between power panelboards and L&A panelboards disappears along with the 42 circuit per panel limit.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Originally posted by hausdok

Yeah, I think it is, but isn't that breaker approved for two conductors? Looks like either a Square D or Cutler-Hammer type that is.

OT - OF!!!

M.

The double lugged breaker doesn't appear to be a Square D or Cutler Hammer brand circuit breaker. Can't tell from the blown up picture if the neutral bar is physically connected to the panel or not. Its nice that there are separate terminal bars (as is required for auxiliary panels), but the wiring on the right blocks total view of that terminal bar.

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