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Thread: AC disconnect
07-10-2012, 05:42 AM #1
This small disconnect panel is for and AC and GFCI breaker supplying and outlet dedicated to heat tape. The neutrals and grounds are on the same bar, got the simply one. However, the breaker for the AC has been removed and the panel is double lugged. Im not sure what the heck the guy did to it Any thoughts. The pics suck but I keep getting this response when I try to upload photos (Your file of 219.2 KB bytes exceeds the forum's limit of 195.3 KB for this filetype) How do you address that,my camera is on the lowest quality setting and it still doesnt work.
07-10-2012, 06:55 AM #2
Re: AC disconnect
FIRST OF ALL, THAT IS NOT A GFCI BREAKER - it is GFPE protection with at 30 mA threshold (still enough to kill someone). GFCI protection trips at 5 mA +/- 1 mA (i.e. 4-6 mA) and is the required protection for PERSONNEL, and is required for exterior servicing receptacle. GFPE is for protection of equipment ONLY, such as for snow melting equipment - does not protect for injury of PERSONS.
Next - Although you "say" this is supplying also an AC, unless its a 120V unit (such as window or through the wall) I find that doubtful.
There doesn't appear to be a second hot conductor (or for that matter not a "neutral" conductor) - just seems to be a simple three wire 120V circuit, with the "grounded conductor) landed and tapped from the second HOT lug. Since you didn't picture the WHOLE box - can't say for sure.
There is not a "double lug" the lugs have been double "tapped" - i.e. two conductors in each lug not rated for same. The supplying circuit does not terminate in this panel - it continues on (apparently to the AC unit directly), un switched or protected by anything in this panel.
There is no disconnect for a (2P) 120/240V AC circuit, just a (SP) 120V 20A, for part of the un-tapped series-parallel loop (and still sharing a common tapped neutral) this is wrong.
A disconnect which simultaneously opens ALL hot conductors is required. The GFPE breaker appears to have been installed so as to do NOTHING regarding protection, it my not trip even under test.
The heat-tape receptacle may be looped/paralled/tapped off (from) the lugs without any local disconnect nor local circuit protection. This type breaker (GFPE, GFCI, or AFCI for that matter) with "pig tail" cannot be "backfed" and provide any protection.
This would mean the combination breaker is not supplied by a proper feeder circuit, nor a dedicated circuit, but a tapped one, thus allowing alternate pathways. Also the servicing receptacle requires GFCI NOT GFPE protection. GFPE prtection is oky for snow melting equipment, exception.
The snow melting equipment likely exceeds 50 percent rules for equipment fastened in place sharing a circuit with a multioutlet or servicing receptacle.
Generally split AC 120/240 units require a dedicated (refrigeration equipment) circuit as it may exceed 50 percent, often nears closer to 80 percent, and the sizing (reduced size of circuit supplying conductors for ampacity allowed for such equipment is ALREADY REDUCED) for the rating of the conductors would be compromized.
Non-individual (not dedicated) branch circuits may not have equipments fastened in place which any one of which exceeds 50% of the branch circuit rating...when equipment does exceed 50% it my not share a circuit with another receptacle or other equipment...it (equipment fastened in place exceeding 50% of circuit rating) requires a dedicated circuit.
How close is this to the 'upstream' panel? is it within sight?
Picturing the ENTIRE panel would make the conjecture as to what is "going on" or "how done" unnecessary. Have to guess what "else" with the wire nuts, etc. since you didn't picture the entire panel, the "upstream" or what is going on with the rest of the circuit (AC, etc.).
Back again to your picture "problems".
Try resizing, reformating and naming the picture files correctly with photo editing software or adjusting your camera file format default settings before you take the picture.
I reformatted both of your ".bmp files with a .jpg extensions", to actual .jpg files, 'web size' formats, by simply using paint to open your file and "save as" .jpg files - with no resizing, etc. this by itself reduced file sizes by 1/4th (less than 50kb).
Why are you suddenly having problems? New camera? Forgetfulness?
Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 07-10-2012 at 08:13 AM.
07-10-2012, 04:24 PM #3
Re: AC disconnect
I can't believe you didnt mention the neutrals and grounds It it for the AC, and its a compressor not a window unit. I will get you better pics. The panel is in the utility room, probably 15 ft away. So needs to say its a cluster. Thanks for the info
07-18-2012, 07:16 AM #4