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electrical panels in closet

max johnson

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IRC says it can't be anyplace used for storage and a light must be installed.

E3305.4 Location of clear spaces. Required working space shall not be designated for storage. Panelboards and overcurrent protection devices shall not be located in clothes closets or bathrooms.



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Originally posted by max johnson

can you install an electrical panel in a closet that has no hanger bar for clothes if all space requirements are met

The actual rule has to do with breakers, not panels. (A fine distinction, I know.)

240.24(D) Not in Vicinity of Easily Ignitible Material. Overcurrent devices shall not be located in the vicinity of easily ignitible material, such as in clothes closets.

Clothes closets are one example of such a place, they're not the only such place.

When I find a panel (on which breakers are mounted) in a closet, I first look for the adequate work space you mentioned -- it's almost never there -- then I look for adequate lighting that Neal mentioned -- the rules for lights in closets are rather restrictive. If adequate work space and lighting exists, then I wrestle with the likelihood of the closet being used to store ignitible materials. This often leads to a dialog in my head that goes, "Every closet in my house contains ignitible materials . . . "

As for bathrooms, 240.24(E) simply prohibits primary overcurrent devices in bathrooms of dwelling units or guest rooms. Note that this doesn't include bathrooms in non-dwelling units.

There's no prohibition against putting them in kitchens.

A new requirement in 2008, 240.24(F), prohibits overcurrent devices from being installed over stair steps.

As for the wet location thing that Matthew asked about, the NEC allows overcurrent devices and panelboards to be installed in dry, damp or wet locations. However, the requirements for the *enclosure* vary with the wetness of the location. These rules are in article 312.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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