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Thread: 2 panels

  1. #1
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    Default 2 panels

    I had a inspection today that had the meter panel on the back of the garage. It went into the garage where there was a 100 amp panel that supplied only the garage ( no feeder to a sub). On the outside of the garage where the meter is there is a small conduit that goes to a box that then goes underground to the basement of the home. With 2 boxes I kept wanting to consider one a sub but really they dont feed off each other. Correct? Just wanting to know if my thinking is correct and what to look for with this setup? Thanks

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Yep, no submarine panels there.

    Sounds to me like there may be two service equipment panels with two main service disconnects in two entirely separate places, and that is not good.

    The above is the best scenario, albeit a wrong one.

    There are a few other scenarios, all of which would be even more wrong than the above.

    Describe the garage panel and the house panel - was there a main disconnect in both? In either?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Yes there was a 100 amp disconnect in both the house and the garage. #4 wire feeding them both. The small box on the outside of the garage that connects to the meter panel was locked. Not a padlock but a power lock out so did not get to see in there.

    E.D.S
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  4. #4
    Roger Frazee's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Sounds like you may have service equipment (you called it a meter panel) on the back of the garage and then feeders from it to the house and garage panel.

    Did this ''meter panel" have 2 circuit breakers in it protecting feeders to the house and garage?

    If not there are some jurisdictions that will allow tap lugs to be installed to the meter lugs. This allows double tapping the load side of the meter.

    Last edited by Roger Frazee; 12-16-2011 at 12:39 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Smith View Post
    I had a inspection today that had the meter panel on the back of the garage. It went into the garage where there was a 100 amp panel that supplied only the garage ( no feeder to a sub). On the outside of the garage where the meter is there is a small conduit that goes to a box that then goes underground to the basement of the home. With 2 boxes I kept wanting to consider one a sub but really they dont feed off each other. Correct? Just wanting to know if my thinking is correct and what to look for with this setup? Thanks
    As I read this, I take it the Garage was free-standing, and not attached to the home.

    "Word picture" is sketchy - how about photos?

    boxes? w/in 10ft or 25 ft cable distance?
    NG bond where?

    Meter panel? Combination equipment or a meter "can"?

    What was in this second "box", cabinet, or whatever?

    Was the property ag/farm or res? Other buildings? Other dwelling units/dwellings?

    Where is the service point? Where is the supply to the "meter panel" coming from?

    How old is the installation?


  6. #6
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Smith View Post
    I had a inspection today that had the meter panel on the back of the garage. It went into the garage where there was a 100 amp panel that supplied only the garage ( no feeder to a sub). On the outside of the garage where the meter is there is a small conduit that goes to a box that then goes underground to the basement of the home. With 2 boxes I kept wanting to consider one a sub but really they dont feed off each other.
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Frazee View Post
    Sounds like you may have service equipment (you called it a meter panel) on the back of the garage and then feeders from it to the house and garage panel.
    From the description above I take it as meaning that if the house panel is fed from the garage panel through that conduit (meter down to a junction box of some type which goes to the garage, then from the junction box it also goes to the house), in which case the feeders to the house would be in the same conduit as the service entrance conductors, and that is not allowed by the NEC.

    Maybe I am missing something in the description?

    Did this ''meter panel" have 2 circuit breakers in it protecting feeders to the house and garage?

    If not there are some jurisdictions that will allow tap lugs to be installed to the meter lugs. This allows double tapping the load side of the meter.
    That would create a condition of two separate service disconnects in two separate locations, which is not allowed by the NEC.

    I suspect I am missing something you are saying, Roger, but I need you to paint more of the picture in before I can 'see' it.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  7. #7
    Roger Frazee's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Jerry

    You have a point and I'm a little rusty and dusty but I'm pretty sure we used a milbank meter socket that had add on lugs to feed an accessory building and a single family dwelling from the meter . Now the question is how do I defend that and what code section did we work under....

    Give me a day or two as I'm like crazy busy this time of year ..... seems like it was one of the exceptions in 230.40 .. I'm just not sure.


  8. #8
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Frazee View Post
    Jerry

    You have a point and I'm a little rusty and dusty but I'm pretty sure we used a milbank meter socket that had add on lugs to feed an accessory building and a single family dwelling from the meter . Now the question is how do I defend that and what code section did we work under....

    Give me a day or two as I'm like crazy busy this time of year ..... seems like it was one of the exceptions in 230.40 .. I'm just not sure.
    Roger,

    Those double lugs would probably have been for parallel conductors.

    The problem with feeding two separate buildings off one meter is that the two service disconnect would be at the two buildings, certainly not grouped together as required.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    What Roger is talking about is a legal way to have 2 services fed from 1 service drop.

    Article 230.40 tells us that only 1 set of service entrance conductors can be fed from a service drop.
    The exception to this is 230.40 exception 3.

    Exception 3 permits a second set of service entrance conductors supplied from a single service drop to a single family dwelling to also supply a seperate structure on the property such as a detached garage or storage shed. The 2 meters can be grouped but the service disconnects do not need to be grouped.
    This is because you have 2 seperate buildings with different services.

    The important part of this to remember is 2 services as in 2 meters.

    From what I understand from the OP is there is only one meter so the exception to 230.40 does not come into play. Sounds like to me they tapped the load side lugs in the meter.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Quote Originally Posted by ken horak View Post
    What Roger is talking about is a legal way to have 2 services fed from 1 service drop.

    Article 230.40 tells us that only 1 set of service entrance conductors can be fed from a service drop.
    The exception to this is 230.40 exception 3.

    Exception 3 permits a second set of service entrance conductors supplied from a single service drop to a single family dwelling to also supply a seperate structure on the property such as a detached garage or storage shed. The 2 meters can be grouped but the service disconnects do not need to be grouped.
    This is because you have 2 seperate buildings with different services.

    The important part of this to remember is 2 services as in 2 meters.
    My take on what Roger said was"
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Frazee
    If not there are some jurisdictions that will allow tap lugs to be installed to the meter lugs. This allows double tapping the load side of the meter.
    I.e., not that there were two separate meters, but that there was one meter with two sets of lugs to allow "double tapping on the load side of the meter."

    From what I understand from the OP is there is only one meter so the exception to 230.40 does not come into play. Sounds like to me they tapped the load side lugs in the meter.
    Agree on that point ... and just pointing out that this is what Roger was referring to with ... "double tapping the load side of the meter."

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

  11. #11
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    OK Jerry - We are both on the same side of this one


  12. #12
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    My take on what Roger said was

    I.e., not that there were two separate meters, but that there was one meter with two sets of lugs to allow "double tapping on the load side of the meter."

    Agree on that point ... and just pointing out that this is what Roger was referring to with ... "double tapping the load side of the meter."
    Ken

    Jerry has it correct I'm talking about a lug kit that actually came standard with the meter socket for 100 amp sub-feeds to accessory buildings ie essentially double tapping the load side of the meter ... one set of service entrance conductors to the residential dwelling the other to the accessory building from one meter not two.

    Problem is I'm obviously missing something from my rusty memory banks. What frustrates me after getting foot in mouth is I actually had a picture of the meter socket installed in my files and the details.. As luck always has it I was cleaning up my files about a year ago and making decisions on what to keep and trash. I trashed that file thinking ..'I'll never need that again' ...

    Anyway this much I know ... it was a milbank CL 200 meter socket.

    I've been two days now trying to link to milbank to see if I can find the meter socket in their files. So far I've been unable to access the milbank website.

    It does sound like the meter socket has been tapped in the OPs description.

    Do either of you understand what he meant by a "power lock out" on the box below the meter? In my world when we were in power lockout it was simply a locking device that allowed several padlocks to be attached so that power would not be restored till the last man working on the system was finished. This is obviously something different just curious what he would be referring to....


  13. #13
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Smith View Post
    Not a padlock but a power lock out so did not get to see in there.
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Frazee View Post
    Do either of you understand what he meant by a "power lock out" on the box below the meter? In my world when we were in power lockout it was simply a locking device that allowed several padlocks to be attached so that power would not be restored till the last man working on the system was finished. This is obviously something different just curious what he would be referring to....
    I suspect he is referring to one of the seals the power companies use to seal ("lock out") their meters ... i.e., 'power lock out'.

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

  14. #14
    Roger Frazee's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2 panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    I suspect he is referring to one of the seals the power companies use to seal ("lock out") their meters ... i.e., 'power lock out'.
    Yeah that makes sense sometimes I make things too complicated.....


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