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jodil

main breaker for a condo

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Ive been told that all condos and apartment buildings must have a main breaker for the building located outside (if anyone knows where that exact verbage is please post)

But, shouldnt each condo have its own main breaker at the panel? Yesterdays inspection on a 4 year old condo came up with no main, builder says its fine since there is one at the end of the building?

thanks

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Hi Jodi,

There should be a main for each unit outside of the building (or in a mechanical-electrical room within the building somewhere) and a sub-panel at each unit. A sub-panel may or may not have it's own primary breaker but it still needs to be set up like a sub-panel with the neutral bus isolated from the panel with one grounded conductor per terminal and with a separate bus for the EGC's that is bonded to the panel and to the ground cable leaving the panel.

I rarely see a single main breaker for an entire complex. When I do, it's typically in an old converted apartment building downtown.

On another subject: If you've got licensing in ND is there anything to report about same?

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Hi Mike,

I dont understand your question about licensing in ND. Can you reword?

So what you are saying is that each unit should have its own main breaker outside with the subpanel being inside the unit? That was not the set up here. It was one main for the whole building, then each condo has its own panel with no main (and yes it was set up like a main grounds and neutrals all on the same bar.)

So there should be a main breaker then on each unit outside right?

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A main disconnect is not required at the unit's panel (a subpanel). It is required to be somewhere though. Around here, it's usually in a room where all the meters are located with a main next to each meter. This room also usually has a big, honking main disconnect to shut down the whole sh-bang. The occupant needs access to their own disconnect unless the bldg. has 24 hour management.

NEC 2002 doesn't require a disconnect outside the bldg but the AHJ makes that decision.

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I called our main Electrical Inspector here in town and heres what he says:

On a building of less than 6 dwellings it is acceptable to have one main breaker located outside for the entire building. All of the panels inside are then considers subpanels and should be wired as such.

hmmm... Seems strange to me and I definately would not want my main breaker out in the parking lot for just anyone to walk by and throw...but he's the boss I guess :(

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Hi Jodi,

ND has an HI registration law that sets certain standards that was passed in 2005. I'm just wondering if there has been anything new to report with that law.

OT - OF!!!

M.

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Oh really? Ive never heard anything about that? Where would I find about it? Anything related to home inspection here is so loose and unregulated it scares me. Being a Realtor for so long, I felt safe being under a local board, state board, and national... Here its just me :o

Please post any info you have on this law.. I'll try and look things up too.

Thanks

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Mike,

All I could find was a law talking about HI's now needing to be licensed, insured, and registered with the state. Is that what you meant? Its been in effect since I became an HI so I know no different.

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Hi Jodi,

I snagged this off the ASHI site (I really need to get a place here and post summaries of them here as well).

North Dakota Registration (HB 1507 enacted in 2005) states the requirements for home inspector registration and license renewal procedures. Applicants must be at least 18 years old, have submitted proof of errors and omissions insurance coverage in the amount of $100,000, and have paid a $200 fee. The law exempts applicants that perform home inspections for residential buildings located outside the corporate limits of any city or located in a city with a population under three thousand from being required to carry errors and omissions insurance in the amount of $100,000. The bill provides a penalty for home inspectors that fail to register, making any individual that provides a home inspection without registration guilty of a class B misdemeanor. Also states that an applicant shall submit proof of completion of an examination offered by the American Society of Home Inspectors, the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors, the Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors, the National Association of Home Inspectors, or the International Code Council. For more information, including registration forms, go to the Home Inspector page at the North Dakota Secretary of State Web site or call 701-328-2900 or e-mail sos@state.nd.us.

Wanna be our official North Dakota TIJ Reporter and keep us all informed about all of the exciting developments with home inspections in North Dakota?

OT - OF!!!

M.

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I would love to! I dont believe anything has changed. Im just happy that they require us to be licensed!

Just let me know what I need to do.

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Originally posted by jodil

I would love to! I dont believe anything has changed. Im just happy that they require us to be licensed!

Just let me know what I need to do.

Just keep your ear to the ground about home inspector stuff, and stuff that could impact home inspectors, that's going on in your state and let us know about it. Pretty simple really.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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In a condo there is a 600 ampere main breaker for the whole building and each apartment has its own meter and main breaker in the meter room for those apartments. In order to replace a burn out a meter socket I have to turn the mail breaker of the building but it would be hard to reset it after the repairs. Is there a extension of the main breaker handle to make easier to turn it back on

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2 hours ago, Bo Moskov said:

In a condo there is a 600 ampere main breaker for the whole building and each apartment has its own meter and main breaker in the meter room for those apartments. In order to replace a burn out a meter socket I have to turn the mail breaker of the building but it would be hard to reset it after the repairs. Is there a extension of the main breaker handle to make easier to turn it back on

Post a photo of the main breaker.

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