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  1. #1
    John Stephenson's Avatar
    John Stephenson Guest

    Default Double taped breakers

    Last edited by John Stephenson; 12-21-2007 at 01:32 PM.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    The heat that trips the breaker can be absorbed by the other wire long enough to start a fire down the line.And you mean Tapped right?


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by John Stephenson View Post
    I know it is wrong to double tape the breakers. Saw two hots today going to one 20amp breaker. Exactly what problem does it cause when you double tape a breaker?
    1. The breaker is not designed for more than one wire, unless it is one by Square D and I think that Cutler Hammer makes one as well. They are not all that common, but you will see them from time to time.
    2. The connections can never be made tight with two wires. One will always be looser.
    3. Loose wire will arc and or overheat.
    4. A fire will start and the house will burn down.
    5. You will be named in the lawsuit and you will also be named in a subrogation lawsuit by the insurance company.

    Off the top of my head I can't think of much more at this time!

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Reno, Nv. - Now St. Louis, Mo.
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Let's not be hasty ....

    There are a number of breakers out there that are listed for having two wires attached to the one lug.

    If such a breaker is used, it is perfectly OK to have two wires going to that breaker.

    If it is not such a breaker, you do have a code violation. The risk is from a fear that one, or more, of the wires will be loose, leading to heat issues. There is also the fear that the multiple wires will take up more space than the clamp is intended to open ... again, leading to a loose connection.

    The same principle applies to any wiring connection, even wire nuts. If you connect the wrong wires, or too many wires, the connection may not be reliable.

    Please note that I say "may." The fact that something is not listed for more than one wire does not mean a good connection is not possible; it may simply mean that the manufacturer never asked UL to evaluate it for more than one wire. The difference is moot; you still have a code violation.


  5. #5
    Joe Tribuzio's Avatar
    Joe Tribuzio Guest

    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    There are some breakers that are doubled up in the space of one breaker, that is,for example two 15 amp w connectors but thinner in the footprint of one 15 amp breaker. I'm sure lots of you have seen them. Why not use one of them, presuming they are available for the brand of panel box.
    Unless someone has had or has heard of bad experiences?

    Just a thought
    Joe


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    OK - just a quick question to confirm my understanding about which breakers can accept two wires...

    IF the Square D breaker shows ONLY a single wire icon or image on the side of it, then it is designed to accept only a single wire correct?

    Thanks in advance for your words of wisdom - I tried searching for a picture that shows the difference, but I may have imagined such a photograph.

    Best regards and inspect safely - jdj


  7. #7
    Michael Greenwalt's Avatar
    Michael Greenwalt Guest

    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    John, could you please provide us with a list of the "number of available breakers" beyond the two most of are already aware of.

    Issue: The coefficient of friction of two wires, drawing different amperage produces the effect of expanding at two different rates. Thus back to the original issue with aluminum branch wiring and the ability to loosen the connection, provide arcing, provide heat, provide fire,...etc. Engineer fix: 1 wire = 1 breaker. AL branch wiring = AL rated equipment.


  8. #8
    Don Gerjevic's Avatar
    Don Gerjevic Guest

    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by JD Johnson View Post
    OK - just a quick question to confirm my understanding about which breakers can accept two wires...

    IF the Square D breaker shows ONLY a single wire icon or image on the side of it, then it is designed to accept only a single wire correct?

    Thanks in advance for your words of wisdom - I tried searching for a picture that shows the difference, but I may have imagined such a photograph.

    Best regards and inspect safely - jdj
    No, that does not necessarily mean that it is "listed" for doubling up under the lug of this particular breaker...There must be documentation included with the device in order to legally terminate in this manner!


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Gerjevic View Post
    No, that does not necessarily mean that it is "listed" for doubling up under the lug of this particular breaker...There must be documentation included with the device in order to legally terminate in this manner!
    No! Incorrect! The requirement is that it be listed and labeled! And when the side of the breaker shows the flat terminal plate with the raised curved edges on each side and shows a wire terminated in each one, that is on part of being labeled!

    If you were to look at the box those breaker come in, the listing and labeling information would be on that box!

    I like as these ! points all over! Cool!

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  10. #10
    Chad Norlen's Avatar
    Chad Norlen Guest

    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Tribuzio View Post
    There are some breakers that are doubled up in the space of one breaker, that is,for example two 15 amp w connectors but thinner in the footprint of one 15 amp breaker. I'm sure lots of you have seen them. Why not use one of them, presuming they are available for the brand of panel box.
    Unless someone has had or has heard of bad experiences?

    Just a thought
    Joe
    A pigtail and a properly sized wirenut installed by a qualified person would work as well.

    Chad


  11. #11
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Don, did you happen to notice the date of the post you replied to.


  12. #12
    Don Gerjevic's Avatar
    Don Gerjevic Guest

    Smile Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    No! Incorrect! The requirement is that it be listed and labeled! And when the side of the breaker shows the flat terminal plate with the raised curved edges on each side and shows a wire terminated in each one, that is on part of being labeled!

    If you were to look at the box those breaker come in, the listing and labeling information would be on that box!

    I like as these ! points all over! Cool!
    Well, guess we both are saying the same thing...bottom line is the device must be listed and labeled!


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Finally an answer after 5 years.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Finally an answer after 5 years.
    And just in time too. We all know how many house fires and deaths have resulted from the dreaded "double tap"!





  15. #15
    Don Gerjevic's Avatar
    Don Gerjevic Guest

    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Jim, if you want to look at NEC 408.41, it will explain away any doubt about if and when you can "double up" a grounded conductor in a panelboard.
    Have a great day!


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Gerjevic View Post
    Jim, if you want to look at NEC 408.41, it will explain away any doubt about if and when you can "double up" a grounded conductor in a panelboard.
    Have a great day!
    Jim knows the NEC perfectly well. His point was: why did you bring up a thread that was started 5 years ago?


  17. #17
    Don Gerjevic's Avatar
    Don Gerjevic Guest

    Default Re: Double taped breakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Guridi View Post
    Jim knows the NEC perfectly well. His point was: why did you bring up a thread that was started 5 years ago?
    Geez...you guys are touchy! Excuse me! I'm new to this forum and was just trying to help!


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