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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    NoCal
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    237

    Default How much paint is too much

    Out of the 18 units in the apartment building there were only 3 panels that were not painted - some were fully painted, some a light sprinkle, but many with paint had scorched or fried wiring (some at the neutral buss , while others at the circuit wire at the breaker).
    All panels had been replaced in this old building some years ago when it had a major makeover with the newer upgraded electrical panels, and of course a new interior paint job. Many more electrical problems throughout the building.
    I don't give 'em a pass when there is even a light sprinkle on the electrical components in the panels.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Barrington, IL
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    I don't get too excited with paint inside the panel till it starts coating the bus bar. Nice pic of the toasted neutral bus.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Chicago IL
    Posts
    1,984

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    That much paint and I write it up as defective - replace immediately. You can cite the Code already stated.

    www.aic-chicago.com
    773/844-4AIC
    "The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Oregon, USA
    Posts
    333

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    And way too much copper showing on the hot line feeds from the breakers(along the bottom). Amateur work.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
    Posts
    3,473

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    I don't care where it is inside the panel. If it's there, it shouldn't be and the panel should be replaced. All you need is the client to have an electrician come in who says "This panel should have been replaced. Didn't your inspector catch that?".

    Any paint in the panel is a big fat red "F" to me.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Central Texas
    Posts
    472

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    My usual comment:


    There is paint or other significant debris within the main distribution panelboard enclosure. This panelboard must be replaced as per NEC 110.12 (C) which states, “Integrity of Electrical Equipment and Connections”. Internal parts of electrical equipment, including busbars, wiring terminals, insulators, and other surfaces, shall not be damaged or contaminated by foreign materials such as paint, plaster, cleaners, abrasives, or corrosive residues. There shall be no damaged parts that may adversely affect safe operation or mechanical strength of the equipment such as parts that are broken; bent; cut; or deteriorated by corrosion, chemical action, or overheating.”

    “If any contaminant has entered the panel that cannot be removed by simply vacuuming or wiping with a clean lint-free cloth, then we would recommend replacing the interior of the panel. If paint, or some other contaminant, has left labeling that is affixed to the panel unreadable, then we would recommend replacing the complete panel. We comment in our current design of panel:
    ‘Allowing petroleum based paint, solvents or spray to contact the non-metallic parts of this product may adversely affect user safety and impair reliability’. This is due to the chemical reaction of the petroleum base paint or solvent to the insulating bases used in the panel.”

    Rick Snapp
    Product Technical Support Group
    Square D Company - Lexington Plant
    E-Mail: rick.snapp@us.schneider-electric.com

    Texas Inspector
    http://www.texasinspector.com
    What the plainspoken man lacks in subtlety, he makes up in clarity.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    NoCal
    Posts
    237

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    Thanks for all your replies, and the listing of the relevant code to back up the requirement of panel replacement where painting (or other contaminants) have occurred on the equipment.
    ....and thanks also Aaron for the quote from one of the manufacturers. Good stuff.
    My client has lots of ammunition to negotiate the price of the 18 unit building.


  8. #8
    Garry Blankenship's Avatar
    Garry Blankenship Guest

    Default Re: How much paint is too much

    It's frustrating to see. Painting is hard, repetitive work; but that's no excuse to be mindless. It's a safety hazzard.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    NoCal
    Posts
    237

    Lightbulb Re: How much paint is too much

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Blankenship View Post
    It's frustrating to see. Painting is hard, repetitive work; but that's no excuse to be mindless. It's a safety hazzard.
    I agree Gary.
    I see this all too often. A simple piece of cardboard cut out to protect the innards from the painter would save having to go through the replacement process. Should the electrical installer be at fault for not covering his work before the painter comes by and floods the panel....or the painter at fault for painting where he ought not? Certainly the electrical contractor should know better than than to continue with the install when he comes back and sees his panel interior is now Navajo white.


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