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  1. #1
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Should Panel Be Wired as a Sub?

    Attached is a pic of the service equipment setup in a multi-unit building I looked at yesterday. I was only inspecting a single unit in the building and opened the panel to see it wired as a service panel (bus bars bonded and grounds and neutrals together). The issue is that the main disconnect for the entire building is in the large shut-off box in the back of the pic and had a ground line off it. None of the other panels that I could see had ground lines. Should the panel in question then be wired as a subpanel (grounds and neutral separated and bonding removed from bus bars)?

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Should Panel Be Wired as a Sub?

    No, subs require special wiring and special attention to corrosion resistance and sealing against water intrusion.



    That panel is "not service equipment" (as you stated) and thus must be wired as "not service equipment", i.e., the neutral must be isolated from ground at all panels which are "not service equipment".

    HOWEVER ...

    The large problem I see is the *location* of that panel.

    If I am understanding you correctly, and the photo indicates I am, *that panel* is the panel for the unit you inspected, that there is no panel in the unit???

    If that is the case, then it is in the wrong location.

    From the 2008 NEC (but it's been like this for years). (underlining is mine)
    - ARTICLE 240 Overcurrent Protection
    - - II. Location.
    - - - 240.24 Location in or on Premises.
    - - - - (B) Occupancy. Each occupant shall have ready access to all overcurrent devices protecting the conductors supplying that occupancy, unless otherwise permitted in 240.24(B)(1) and (B)(2).
    - - - - - (1) Service and Feeder Overcurrent Devices. Where electric service and electrical maintenance are provided by the building management and where these are under continuous building management supervision, the service overcurrent devices and feeder overcurrent devices supplying more than one occupancy shall be permitted to be accessible only to authorized management personnel in the following: (Jerry's note: This does not apply.)
    - - - - - - (1) Multiple-occupancy buildings
    - - - - - - (2) Guest rooms or guest suites
    - - - - - (2) Branch-Circuit Overcurrent Devices. Where electric service and electrical maintenance are provided by the building management and where these are under continuous building management supervision, the branch-circuit overcurrent devices supplying any guest rooms or guest suites without permanent provisions for cooking shall be permitted to be accessible only to authorized management personnel. (Jerry's note: I doubt this applies either, otherwise you would not have been allowed in there, you would have been accompanied by that personnel.)

    Thus, that panel should be in the unit.

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

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Should Panel Be Wired as a Sub?

    Jerry, one thing I didn't mention is that the unit I inspected was the 1st floor unit and the buyer stated he was also essentially buying the basement along with the unit. Assuming that is correct, wouldn't that allow the panel to be located in it's present location?


  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Should Panel Be Wired as a Sub?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    the buyer stated he was also essentially buying the basement along with the unit. Assuming that is correct, wouldn't that allow the panel to be located in it's present location?
    If that room were located within his owned basement, but if it was, then all the other electrical equipment in there would be a problem.

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

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
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    Default Re: Should Panel Be Wired as a Sub?

    Good point.

    Thanks Jerry.


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