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disconnect and removable panels


Paragon
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[:-dunce]

I was talking to a store owner in a new (as of last year) strip mall here in Central Florida, and he mentioned that their a/c units (rooftop, of course) all had their emergency disconnects mounted to the panel that is used to access the equipment. I understood him to mean a removable panel to access the unit for servicing. As I read the 2002 NEC section 440.14, it seems to clearly prohibit this. I am not very familar with commercial structures, so I wonder if this is common in a commercial HVAC system. Presumably, it was passed by the city of Winter Garden inspector. The owner also told me that his neighbor's unit had shut down and it was discovered then that no filter was in place. In fact, none of the units had filters. The mall owner accused that store owner of having removed it (yes, so many store owners go up on the roof to play with equipment!).

Am I interpreting the NEC correctly on this point, or is there an exception or HVAC industry standard I am unaware of? Wish I had a photo or better understanding of the situation, but it was a casual conversation that piqued my curiosity....

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Originally posted by Paragon

[:-dunce]

I was talking to a store owner in a new (as of last year) strip mall here in Central Florida, and he mentioned that their a/c units (rooftop, of course) all had their emergency disconnects mounted to the panel that is used to access the equipment. I understood him to mean a removable panel to access the unit for servicing. As I read the 2002 NEC section 440.14, it seems to clearly prohibit this. I am not very familar with commercial structures, so I wonder if this is common in a commercial HVAC system. Presumably, it was passed by the city of Winter Garden inspector. The owner also told me that his neighbor's unit had shut down and it was discovered then that no filter was in place. In fact, none of the units had filters. The mall owner accused that store owner of having removed it (yes, so many store owners go up on the roof to play with equipment!).

Am I interpreting the NEC correctly on this point, or is there an exception or HVAC industry standard I am unaware of? Wish I had a photo or better understanding of the situation, but it was a casual conversation that piqued my curiosity....

I may be misunderstanding your description of what's going on, but it seems to me that 440-14 specifically allows what you've described.

". . . The disconnecting means shall be permitted to be installed on or within the air-conditioning or refrigeration equipment."

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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I can only agree that the AHJ is allowing this situation for some reason.

As to the section quoted: the next sentence states "the disconnecting means shall not be located on panels that are designed to allow access to the air-conditioning or refrgeration equipment."

Maybe the city inspectors interpret that differently or maybe the equipment falls under the exception somehow. I'd love to see this set up for myself, but it's not gonna happen, I know. Thanks for your replies, folks...

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Originally posted by Paragon

. . . As to the section quoted: the next sentence states "the disconnecting means shall not be located on panels that are designed to allow access to the air-conditioning or refrgeration equipment." . . .

That sentence isn't in the '99 NEC. When did Florida adopt the '02 edition? As a commercial building, the permit may have been pulled quite some time before the mall was built.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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That sentence isn't in the '99 NEC. When did Florida adopt the '02 edition? As a commercial building, the permit may have been pulled quite some time before the mall was built.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

That may be the answer. I am not sure how long this little mall has been in the offing, but I do know that Publix, the supermarket, (the anchor of the mall) was unhappy in its old location down the street for quite awhile.

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