Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Paul Tooley's Avatar
    Paul Tooley Guest

    Default Double tap or Not?

    in the picture (sorry for the lack of quality) there are two wire nuts in the lower left side of the main panel. no available lugs for additional breakers. The wire nuts each have three wires going in, with one leading to a breaker and the other two disappearing through the cabinet wall.

    First, the BA just called stating that the "builder", most likely the contractor that did the remodeling, said that he cannot see any double wired breakers in the panel. The picture identifies the concern, as well as my report noting the double-tapping. I did fail, however, to explicitly describe the fact that the wire-nutted wires are the double-taps, and not just to look at the breakers. maybe this is the point of confusion. I did recommend that a "qualified licensed electrician" eval and make corrections as needed.

    Second, I know this is an issue but cannot find the code references to give to the "builder". I explained to the BA that I am not a code enforcement officer, yadda, yadda, and she fully understands and agrees. But anything that can be sent to refute the "builder" helps. Does anybody have the chapter and verse that I can forward on?

    thanks

    Similar Threads:
    ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images
    NHIE Practice Exam

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,365

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    I think you made the correct call... I don't think you'll find an electrician alive that would say that is okay. I'm not aware of any code that gives a minimum distance that connections must be from breakers (maybe there is one I'm not aware of)...

    I heard a quote from a city inspector that applies here... 'The code doesn't address stupid'


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Barrington, IL
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    I think that you'll find that double tapping pertains to two (or more) wires into one breaker or neutral bus lug. I haven't heard of using wire nuts as being a problem, you'll find them properly installed in many junction boxes.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI
    Posts
    645

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    I think you made the correct call... I don't think you'll find an electrician alive that would say that is okay.
    Sorry, but on what basis would you make this call?

    Double taping refers to the connection of more than one wire to a breaker termination that is not listed for that purpose.


  5. #5
    Richard Moore's Avatar
    Richard Moore Guest

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    First, wire nuts are allowed within the service panel. There are restrictions based on percentage of wiring space, but nothing in the picture would suggest you are close to those limits.

    Pig-tailing two conductors, with a wire-nut, to a single breaker is actually an acceptable fix for a double-tapped breaker. This assumes that you aren’t violating some “restricted circuit” rule such as adding a non-allowable receptacle to a kitchen small appliance circuit. But, if it’s just adding another light to a general lighting circuit, for instance, this is really no different from two conductors going to a listed, two-wire, Square-D or CH breaker. You effectively have a single circuit, but with two “home-runs” to the panel. Again, really no difference from making that connection in a J-box just outside the panel.

    So…if you know or suspect that the breaker would be overloaded, or that other circuit rules have been broken, or the panel as a whole is overloaded then fine, call it. But, don’t call it for “double-tapping”.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    25,317

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Tooley View Post
    in the picture (sorry for the lack of quality) there are two wire nuts in the lower left side of the main panel. no available lugs for additional breakers. The wire nuts each have three wires going in, with one leading to a breaker and the other two disappearing through the cabinet wall.
    This is not a problem, this is the easy and correct way to correct multiple tapped breakers.

    First, the BA just called stating that the "builder", most likely the contractor that did the remodeling, said that he cannot see any double wired breakers in the panel. The picture identifies the concern, as well as my report noting the double-tapping. I did fail, however, to explicitly describe the fact that the wire-nutted wires are the double-taps, and not just to look at the breakers. maybe this is the point of confusion. I did recommend that a "qualified licensed electrician" eval and make corrections as needed.
    They wire nuts *ARE NOT* "double tapped".

    *DOUBLE TAPPED* (multiple tapped is a better term as what happens when you see three ... ) is when two conductors ARE IN THE SAME TERMINAL ... not when they are in a wire nut rated for that use. Look at the wire nut rating, that is probably rated for:
    2-6 #14
    2-5 #12
    2-3 #10

    Thus, having 3 #12 in it *is not* a problem.

    Second, I know this is an issue but cannot find the code references to give to the "builder". I explained to the BA that I am not a code enforcement officer, yadda, yadda, and she fully understands and agrees. But anything that can be sent to refute the "builder" helps. Does anybody have the chapter and verse that I can forward on?[/quote]

    Only information which will make you hold your hat in your hand a beg for mercy in view of all the other things you did correctly.

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

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,365

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Larson View Post
    Sorry, but on what basis would you make this call?

    Double taping refers to the connection of more than one wire to a breaker termination that is not listed for that purpose.
    In the picture it looks like the pigtail wires are short and stubby... when working with short wires like that it's tough to get a good twist on them and it would seem there is a higher than normal chance of one being loose.

    I'm not saying I would call it for sure... I'd have to see it up close. It's just not the way every other pigtail I've seen is done.

    Contrary to common belief people are paying us for our opinion.... not a code inspection. My opinion is that could have been done better.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    25,317

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    My opinion is that could have been done better.

    We could say that "My opinion is that could have been done better." about *EVERYTHING* in the house.

    I sure do hope that is not anyone's 'standard'.

    There is absolutely NOTHING which could not have been done better. Use that standard and *anyone* can drag you into court for *anything*. I would not want to be in those shoes.

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

  9. #9
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Moore View Post
    First, wire nuts are allowed within the service panel. There are restrictions based on percentage of wiring space, but nothing in the picture would suggest you are close to those limits.

    Pig-tailing two conductors, with a wire-nut, to a single breaker is actually an acceptable fix for a double-tapped breaker. This assumes that you aren’t violating some “restricted circuit” rule such as adding a non-allowable receptacle to a kitchen small appliance circuit. But, if it’s just adding another light to a general lighting circuit, for instance, this is really no different from two conductors going to a listed, two-wire, Square-D or CH breaker. You effectively have a single circuit, but with two “home-runs” to the panel. Again, really no difference from making that connection in a J-box just outside the panel.

    So…if you know or suspect that the breaker would be overloaded, or that other circuit rules have been broken, or the panel as a whole is overloaded then fine, call it. But, don’t call it for “double-tapping”.

    I agree with the entire post by Richard M.-- accurate.
    rr


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,365

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    It's hard to tell from the picture... but my comments are based on what I can see. The reason I think they could have done better is that the pigtail connections are crammed so close to the nearby breakers that you cannot possibly take out or change the surrounding breakers without greatly distrubing the connection in question.

    So, why install something that restricts access to items that are otherwise meant to move? Again, without being able to see the rest of the panel I can't say but I would imagine there are much better places to tuck a couple of wire nuts.

    From what I see this is an item that I likely wouldn't call out.... but if I was asked specifically, as the OP did... I'd say just what I did... it's a poor installation, probably done by a homeowner.

    Just because there's not a decimal number and page number in a 600 page book that reassures me it's bad I still feel okay saying it.... just my opinion


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Double tap or Not?

    Matt,

    Let it go.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •