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Old 04-24-2012, 03:53 PM   #1
Guber12
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Default Main Service panel question?

I have a panel on a house I am currently under contract to buy.
I was just curious if I needed to do an official load calculations or if this just seems like I need to upgrade to a largerpanel.
I have 100 amp coming in the house and on the main breaker box there is a 70, 60, 60 and 40 amp breakers, which service three additional panels two in the house and one in the garage and one breaker in for the water heater ( which I believe is the one in the house in the older kitchen).
Funny thing is that there are two electric water heaters (one that services the laundry in the garage, which I believe comes of the breaker box in the garage and kitchen in the older part of the home) and the main one is gas.
Therefore, I believe that this seems like too much from knowledge and doing load calculations myself for System Engineering. But they are based on continuous and non continuous loads as well as a nominal Amps and voltage.

So does anyone have recommendations based on what I have given or do I need to provide more?
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:59 PM   #2
pattenp
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

Just from common sense it sounds like an upgrade to 200A service would be the best thing to do, plus it will help with the sale value of the home in the future.
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Old 04-25-2012, 05:34 AM   #3
Speedy Petey
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

It's hard to say without doing an actual load calc, but it definitely sounds like an upgrade to 200A is in your best interest.
The breaker ratings are really meaningless, but from just looking at the connected load supports this.
Besides, how old is the original panel? Never hurts to get new equipment in there.
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Old 04-25-2012, 09:29 AM   #4
Guber12
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

Not really sure how old the panel is, but the original home was built in the 5o's and then there was an addition added on in the 70's. Question to Speedy Petey and pattenp, do you have to upgrade the panel or can you just upgrade the main breaker? I believe it would depend on the panel model and manufacture correct?
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Old 04-25-2012, 01:13 PM   #5
pattenp
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

The panel may be able to take a 200A main breaker, but I doubt it. Another issue is the service entrance cable is most likely not rated for 200A, plus you may be looking at a meter upgrade too.
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Old 04-25-2012, 01:18 PM   #6
Guber12
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

@ pattenp - So the meter upgrade and wires would that be paid for by the city the house reside or by me? Also, i should probably do a load calculation on the house first before I incore and expenses or will most electricians come out and give you a free bid?
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Old 04-25-2012, 03:11 PM   #7
matt151617
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

The meter and wiring from the pole should be provided by the power company. You're responsible for the wire from the meter into the panel. If you measure that distance, an electrican should be able to give you a fairly accurate quote.
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Old 04-25-2012, 04:07 PM   #8
Guber12
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

@ matt151617 - Thanks for that information I will check into measuring it.
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Old 04-25-2012, 04:12 PM   #9
PRH44
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

In this area the customer is responsible for installing the meter base the conduit riser and the the conductors at a length 3 feet hanging out of the weather head. The power company will do the drop and connect to your service riser.
This is fairly standard procedure. Call your utility and they will give you their requirements.
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Old 04-26-2012, 05:59 AM   #10
Speedy Petey
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PRH44 View Post
In this area the customer is responsible for installing the meter base the conduit riser and the the conductors at a length 3 feet hanging out of the weather head. The power company will do the drop and connect to your service riser.
This is fairly standard procedure. Call your utility and they will give you their requirements.
Exactly. This is typical of most areas these days.
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Old 04-26-2012, 06:01 AM   #11
Speedy Petey
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guber12 View Post
Not really sure how old the panel is, but the original home was built in the 5o's and then there was an addition added on in the 70's. Question to Speedy Petey and pattenp, do you have to upgrade the panel or can you just upgrade the main breaker? I believe it would depend on the panel model and manufacture correct?
You have to upgrade the panel. You CANNOT simply replace the main breaker with a bigger one.

That said, it would be crazy to do a service upgrade and keep an old panel, especially if it is a small as a typical older 100A panel.
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Old 05-02-2012, 11:56 PM   #12
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PRH44 View Post
In this area the customer is responsible for installing the meter base the conduit riser and the the conductors at a length 3 feet hanging out of the weather head. The power company will do the drop and connect to your service riser.
This is fairly standard procedure. Call your utility and they will give you their requirements.
This is exactly what is required by my poco to relocate my drop.
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Old 05-05-2012, 10:46 PM   #13
6768rogues
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Default Re: Main Service panel question?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PRH44 View Post
In this area the customer is responsible for installing the meter base the conduit riser and the the conductors at a length 3 feet hanging out of the weather head. The power company will do the drop and connect to your service riser.
This is fairly standard procedure. Call your utility and they will give you their requirements.
I agree, that is how it is done here. To upgrade under our rules, you need to buy a new weatherhead, drop wire, meter channel, wire from the meter channel to the panel, new ground rods and wiring if existing is not up to snuff, and perhaps a new panelbox if the existing one is not rated for what you want to do. It all needs to be inspected before the utility company will plug in their meter and bring it online. I would move in and see how it goes. You might not have enough concurrent electrical usage to cause an issue.
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