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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ft. Myers, FL
    Posts
    363

    Default Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    Beside double tap, copper and aluminum together, and 2 differant gages of wires what else is there to say about this. This was coming off the main disconnect to a 50 AMP subpanel for electric dryer. The 100 AMP Bulldog Pushmatic panel was full. I remember hearing about the Bulldog panels before, were they problamatic or just a bad design?? Yes I saw the double tap on upper left. Thanks.

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    Paul Kondzich
    Ft. Myers, FL.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
    Posts
    4,517

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    Paul,

    The breakers are bad about the switches popping loose.

    Seems like I only come across them only on condos that were constructed late 60's early 70's.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    5,829

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    Bulldog panels and breakers are a good design but they are getting pretty old. I would say that that the youngest will be around 30-35 or so years old. As they are this old replacement breakers can be on the expensive side. I have only seen a the "button" off on one breaker, not much different than broken breaker handles, IMO.

    I would let my client know that the panel and breakers are old, replacement parts may be expensive and hard to find as time goes on. I would then let them know that the average life expectancy of an electrical panel/breaker is around 40 or so years of age.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    4,112

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    I would hate to be the person relying on the green color code to indicate ground at the other end of this wire.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Reno, Nv. - Now St. Louis, Mo.
    Posts
    369

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    What makes you think that you see aluminum wire? With that type of insulation, I think you're looking at tinned copper.

    Just because you can't find something on the market today does not mean it's automatically bad. I am not aware of any problems specific to Bulldog breakers.

    The double tap is a concern.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
    Posts
    5,829

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    Quote Originally Posted by John Steinke View Post
    What makes you think that you see aluminum wire? With that type of insulation, I think you're looking at tinned copper.

    Just because you can't find something on the market today does not mean it's automatically bad. I am not aware of any problems specific to Bulldog breakers.

    The double tap is a concern.
    I believe that he is talking about the stranded aluminum SE cable. This is not tinned copper.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  7. #7
    Aaron Miller's Avatar
    Aaron Miller Guest

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    Just because you can't find something on the market today does not mean it's automatically bad.
    I don't disagree in concept, otherwise most of us would be automatically bad, though astronomically expensive replacement parts are available even in our case.

    As far as the Bulldog breakers themselves my comments would echo Scott's concern that they are nearing or beyond their statistical lifespan. That comment would be in my report.

    Aaron


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    25,313

    Default Re: Double tap off main disconnect/ Bulldog Pushmatic

    Quote Originally Posted by John Steinke View Post
    What makes you think that you see aluminum wire? With that type of insulation, I think you're looking at tinned copper.

    *IF* we go with the assumption that those are tinned copper, then a more important problem arises.

    That of "rubber insulation".

    If those 'are' tinned copper, then the insulation will be "rubber", and rubber insulation dries out, becomes brittle and cracks, leaving a compromised insulation (at best) and a failed insulation (at worst).

    The solution then it to replace the conductors. Before replacing the conductor, the insulation should be verified and, if rubber, the insulation checked with a megger. The insulation will likely fail that test (if rubber) and the conductors will need to be replaced anyway, now having spent more money than would have been spent to have just gone ahead and replaced the conductors to start with.

    By the size of the strands in those conductors, I'm inclined to agree with John - that they may likely be tinned copper ... however, that brings up the other problem I stated above.

    I.e., "tinned copper" is 'not a good thing' to find, and when you find tinned copper, give the conductor insulation a good looking over. If the conductors are stiff (smaller conductors such as #12, etc.), then the insulation had dried and hardened, being in need of replacement.

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

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