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Thread: Sub panels

  1. #1
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    Default Sub panels

    Reading several thread here regarding subpanels. While the NEC does not have a definition of a subpanel using definitions of similar words can help.

    Here are several:
    sub·ma·rine
    n. 1. A vessel that is capable of operating submerged. Also called sub1.
    2. A large sandwich consisting of a long roll split lengthwise and filled with layers of meat, cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, and condiments. Also called sub1; also called regionally Cuban sandwich, grinder, hero, hoagie, Italian sandwich, poor boy, torpedo, wedge, zep.

    adj. Beneath the surface of the water; undersea.

    v. sub·ma·rined, sub·ma·rin·ing, sub·ma·rines
    v.tr. 1. To attack by submarine, especially with torpedoes.
    2. Sports To knock down with a blow to the legs.
    3. Baseball To pitch (a ball) with an underhand motion.

    v.intr. To slide, drive, or throw under something.

    Subordinate:
    Main Entry: 1sub·or·di·nate \ Function: adjective Etymology: Middle English subordinat, from Medieval Latin subordinatus, past participle of subordinare to subordinate, from Latin sub- + ordinare to order — more at ordain Date: 15th century 1: placed in or occupying a lower class, rank, or position : inferior <a subordinate officer>

    And then there is substandard meaning not up to the expected level.

    Which brings me back to subpanel. Since the prefix sub means not at the top level, or below it is easy to extract that a subpanel is subordinate to another panel.

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  2. #2
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Sub panels

    Why thank you mister Jim

    I have been using and hearing the word sub panel all my life and as hard as one may try to erase it, it will not be leaving these older brain cells anytime soon.

    One has *A panel in there garage with all the goodies, disconnect, breakers, grounding. They add an auxiliary/sub panel for expansion and then your understanding comes to play

    "Since the prefix sub means not at the top level, or below it is easy to extract that a sub-panel is subordinate to another panel."

    I just cannot get away from it and it fits. Might not be in a book (it is in some books) but it fits.


  3. #3
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Sub panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Fritz Kelly View Post
    So what does sub-poena mean?
    It means if you do not answer it you will be a sub citizen in jail.


  4. #4
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Fritz Kelly View Post
    No Ted, it means Jerry is going to get you by the B***s!
    Jerry will like this one

    Jeff, if your existing panel has a set of lugs at the bottom of the buss bars, you can connect to these to feed the sub panel as long as the sub panel is rated at least 100 amps, because the sub panel will be protected by the main in the main panel. These lugs will be hot unless the meter is pulled to make the connection on these lugs. If you are feeding it from a breaker, the breaker must be rated at or less than the sub panel rating. In other words, you can install a 200 amp sub panel and feed it from a 50 amp breaker if the load on the sub panel will not exceed 50 amps. You could not however feed the sub panel with a 250 amp breaker since that exceeds the sub panel rating. The breaker size you use to feed the sub panel will also determine the size feeder wires you will need to connect the sub panel to the main panel. It does not matter if the sub is a 200 amp panel, if it is fed by a 50 amp breaker, the wiring only has to be rated for 50 amps. I hope this cleared this up. If I can assist further, let me know, J

    This will be Jerry


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    You will find "sub panels" in "submarines".

    You *might* find a "sub fed" panel in a house, coommercial building, industrial setting, or even in a school ... however ... that "sub fed" panel is still a ... get this ... "panel".

    The main problem in using that submarine term is that you (most HIs and electrician) use that term to associate how, when, and where the neutral is bonded to ground or isolated from ground, and therein lies the confusion - think "service equipment" and that will anwer your question.

    Is this "service equipment"? No, it is "not service equipment". And we all know you bond the neutral to ground at "service equipment" and you isolate the neutral from ground at "not service equipment".

    Many times you will have a panel *which is part of* the "service equipment" (i.e., it is "in the same enclosure" with the service equipment), in which case, do you bond the neutral to ground at the "panel"? Hmmm ... no, you bond the neutral to ground at the "service equipment" - panel or no panel.

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

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Jerry will like this one

    Jeff, if your existing panel has a set of lugs at the bottom of the buss bars, you can connect to these to feed the sub panel as long as the sub panel is rated at least 100 amps, because the sub panel will be protected by the main in the main panel. These lugs will be hot unless the meter is pulled to make the connection on these lugs. If you are feeding it from a breaker, the breaker must be rated at or less than the sub panel rating. In other words, you can install a 200 amp sub panel and feed it from a 50 amp breaker if the load on the sub panel will not exceed 50 amps. You could not however feed the sub panel with a 250 amp breaker since that exceeds the sub panel rating. The breaker size you use to feed the sub panel will also determine the size feeder wires you will need to connect the sub panel to the main panel. It does not matter if the sub is a 200 amp panel, if it is fed by a 50 amp breaker, the wiring only has to be rated for 50 amps. I hope this cleared this up. If I can assist further, let me know, J

    This will be Jerry
    No, Jerry is not going , Jerry is going because Ted is wrong.

    If Ted would like me to explain why he is wrong, I will be glad to.

    Ted,

    The first of your problems starts in your first sentence - can you find it?

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

  7. #7
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    No, Jerry is not going , Jerry is going because Ted is wrong.

    If Ted would like me to explain why he is wrong, I will be glad to.

    Ted,

    The first of your problems starts in your first sentence - can you find it?
    Wasn't my sentence...Another internet electrician

    Jerry

    I just did a google search on supanel and that came up right away. I just put it on here because it had subpanel listed so many times.

    Nothing was picked for accuracy. Just making a point about that know matter where you go in this great land of ours the term subpanel has been around for ever.

    Of course the term has to be applied to the proper panel (neutral isolated from ground and ground back to main panel, oops, service equipment).

    One problem with sub panels is that if they are in a separate building it is not grounded the same as what I would call a subpanel as in the ground in the panel has to have its own grounding conductor going to a grounding rod. (not a problem, just the way it should be to insure proper grounding at the other building at a distance from the service equipment)

    Anyways Mr Jerry

    I do believe that this entire thread was started for your sake so I added to it. I actually like reading your explanations on how something is real but non existent

    Boy oh boy

    The few days before school starts and no one calling as usual for this time of year. Bored to tears. Get those little rodents back to school and get back on the house hunting trail.


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    Just an FYI,

    The 2008 Code has removed the option to run a 3 wire feeder to outbuilding panels fed from other panels, ie a subpanel.

    This is regardless of other metallic paths between the buildings.


  9. #9
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Just an FYI,

    The 2008 Code has removed the option to run a 3 wire feeder to outbuilding panels fed from other panels, ie a subpanel.

    This is regardless of other metallic paths between the buildings.
    Hence its own ground. I thought I said that. I am good at messing up or mis wording.

    You did not use that nasty word subpanel did you..

    Jerry, you seeing this

    Actually, did you word that right? Removed the option?


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Sub panels

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Hence its own ground. I thought I said that. I am good at messing up or mis wording.

    You did not use that nasty word subpanel did you..

    Jerry, you seeing this

    Actually, did you word that right? Removed the option?
    With the adoption of the 08 Code 3 wire feeders will NOT be allowed.

    Before the 08 it was ok to run a 3 wire feeder IF no other metallic paths existed between the 3 buildings, ie; no phone, cable tv or metallic water lines.

    The rules concerning ground rods are the same.


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