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Thread: 1950s home

  1. #1
    dan orourke's Avatar
    dan orourke Guest

  2. #2
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: 1950s home

    If the panel was upgraded in 2004, then, in my opinion, the upgrade should be made to afci's.

    The requirement of the NEC identified Jan 1, 2002 as the date of requiring all bedroom outlets to be afci protected.

    Your AHJ may be slow in the implementation process or decided that enforcing the requirement wasn't needed. Well, even though the outlet receptacles may not have been replaced after 1/2002, the panel was. In my opinion, the new panel should be installed in with the incorporation of the arc-fault interrupter type breakers for those circuits.

    I would certainly write it as "In Need of Repair" everytime.

    Rich


  3. #3
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    A related thing I've always wondered about.... are you guys testing the afci breakers in the panel? In an occupyed house I sometimes hesitate to kill power to the bedrooms (reset computers, fish tank pumps, alarm clocks, etc.) My state SOP's have made no mention of them yet so it's kind of unchartered territory.


  4. #4
    Jeff Eastman's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    .............

    Last edited by Jeff Eastman; 12-20-2007 at 06:57 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Eastman View Post
    I tested once, never again: I crashed the computer because it was a "hard shutdown".
    Which verifies what I keep telling EVERYONE WHO WILL LISTEN (are you listening? ) ... *if you have a computer, you need a UPS (battery backup) for it*.



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

  6. #6
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    if you have a computer, you need a UPS (battery backup) for it.
    UPS units need periodic battery replacement, like anything that runs on batteries. Having the UPS doesn't necessarily eliminate the problem.

    Dom.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    Quote Originally Posted by Dom D'Agostino View Post
    UPS units need periodic battery replacement, like anything that runs on batteries. Having the UPS doesn't necessarily eliminate the problem.

    Dom.
    True, but if you keep your computer forever without upgrading, you have other problems.

    *Of course* things need to be maintained.

    But NOT HAVING a UPS is just asking for trouble, unless your area never (I repeat *never*) has power failures. I have never (I repeat, *never*) been in an area which did not, at least occasionally, have power failures.

    Tripping the AFCI is no different than having a power failure.

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

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    This is a matter for the local AHJ to decide, as it can be debated both ways; the code is somewhat vague here.

    The interpretation of our AHJ's is that a service change does NOT carry with it any obligation to use GFI or AFCI breakers, regardless of where those circuits may go. In short, you're working on the panel - not the branch circuits.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    John,
    If your municipality is on line, they will usually have the City building code on line. Many times they will list some chosen % or $ amount of "remodeling" or "upgrading" that determines when upgrades must occur.

    Irrespective of what the City code says, I think it prudent to tell my Clients what their best circumstances would be and WHY. It's then up to them to fight it out or not.

    The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
    - Paul Fix

  10. #10
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    [quote=John Steinke;12485]This is a matter for the local AHJ to decide, as it can be debated both ways; the code is somewhat vague here.

    The interpretation of our AHJ's is that a service change does NOT carry with it any obligation to use GFI or AFCI breakers, regardless of where those circuits may go. In short, you're working on the panel - not the branch circuits.

    John,

    I know you're a sparky and I have read many of your posts and find you pretty knowledgable and always look forward to your input on electical issues...

    However, I do have to disagree with you on this one:
    John stated: "In short, you're working on the panel - not the branch circuits."

    Errr??
    How can that be? Anytime you change out the panel, you are removing breakers. Are you telling me that the branch circuit overcurrent protection does not have to meet present day code, as does everything else in the panel when doing a replacement?

    Does that mean that since the (old panels') grounded conductors were doubled up at the neutral bars, that it's ok to put'em back that way?

    Not sometimes, everytime (around the 32 cities in my neighborhood) the AHJ requires a panel replacement to confirm with ALL aspects of the NEC (as applicable), with no grandfathering.


  11. #11
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    There is what some refer to as the "Straw man" argument ... setting up a 'straw man' just so you can knock him down. Let's not be silly.

    I gave the reading of the local AHJ: service changes do not require the addition of AFCI breakers. As mentioned, there are all sorts of arguments that went into this, and everyone has their opinions, but the AHJ is the one that counts. No need to hijack the thread.

    As for the scale of the remodel, that is defined by the building code, and founded upon the 'no after-the-fact' law principle. New rules only apply to new events .... the code simply clarifies when a 'repair' becomes a 'replacement.

    I can't imagine a service change ever reaching the point where it is considered equivalent to replacing the entire house.

    I did err in one respect in my post: GFI breakers. Replacing the two-prong receptacles with three prong receptacles is a change separate from the service change ... and needs to comply with those rules. Since GFI receptacles were not used, probably the easiest (and maybe only) solution is to use GFI breakers at the panel.
    (This is distinct from GFI requirements by location. For example, the three prong receptacle in the bath is getting GFI protection because it's now a three priong receptacle- not because it's in the bath. Had the replacement been a two-prong receptacle, the GFI requirement would not apply).

    As to using AFCI's because it's one's opinion that to do so is wise .... well, nothing says you can't do that. One just has to differentiate between 'judgment' and 'law.'

    Remember, the code is NOT a design manual, it is NOT an instruction manual, but IS a minimum requirement.


  12. #12
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1950s home

    John,

    Not trying to hi-jack any thread or discussion. I was simply trying to get information from you that I consider to be of a higher level with respect to the electrical field.

    In our neck of the woods, the AHJ require if the panel is replaced... the present day requirements have to be met.

    Rich


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