Results 1 to 20 of 20
  1. #1
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
    Jody Humbert Guest

    Default Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Hi everyone. I have been writing up any panels that have specific manufacturer labels stating "Use only ....... brand breakers type ....... " when I observe that different brands are installed. I have been getting beat up by the electricians in my county that this is not correct, and there are breakers that interchange in many different panels. County inspectors don't appear to have to deal with this since most all new construction have brand new panels with the same breakers. Is there any specific (NEC) information that I can print to back up that this may be voiding liability of the manufacturer in the event of any problem with their panel? Any info is greatly appreciated. I am new to the site and very impressed with the knowledge that all the inspectors pass on to those of us that are still absorbing alot in this industry. Thank you

    Similar Threads:
    Inspection Referral

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

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Technically speaking, If the manufacturer says only use our breakers then you are suppose to go by the manufacturers directions. Do you have to write them up if there is a breaker in the panel that has been tested for use in that panel but is not of the same manufacturer. I would not.

    You must use what is rated for that panel. If what is in there is UL listed then I personally do not see a problem with it.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Quote Originally Posted by Jody Humbert View Post
    --specific manufacturer labels stating "Use only ....... brand breakers type ....... "
    Jody,

    PDF is from Square D's builders grade panel.

    Let Them Show You in Writing that the Installed Breakers are Correct.

    *see Warning at the bottom of page 2.

    Attached Files Attached Files
    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.

  4. #4
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
    Jody Humbert Guest

    Smile Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Thanks Ted and Billy. I have been taking that stand, Billy. Let the electrician put it on his letterhead that it's an acceptable situation. I have been Googling for some info and I just read on a forum chat room from 1999 a statement from an engineer at Square D on this subject. He stated that you should only use Square D breakers in their panel( as printed) and that Square D will take the position that the liability for the panel has been voided. I still would like to know if there is anything in the NEC or some other authority about this. I just don't understand why in the hell it is so hard for electricians or do-it-yourselfers to follow recommendations and warnings by manufacturers? Thanks again for your replies.


  5. #5

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    I hope Jim doesn't mind me posting this here:
    I wrote this in 2005:

    I’d advise treading carefully when condemning off-brand breakers. Sometimes, it’s not a violation.

    If a breaker manufacturer pays for it, Underwriters Laboratories will test and “classify” one manufacturer’s breakers for use in another manufacturer’s panel. These breakers are known – not surprisingly – as “classified breakers.” From both a safety and a code perspective, these breakers are perfectly acceptable to use in the panels for which they’re listed. When you buy them, the breakers come with a long list of panels that are acceptable to put them in.

    Check out the UL guide for these breakers at http://database.ul.com/cgi-bin/XYV/template/LISEXT/1FRAME/showpage.html?name=DIXF.GuideInfo&ccnshorttitle=Ci rcuit Breakers, Molded-case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment&objid=1074081964&cfgid=1073741824&versio n=versionless&parent_id=1073

    Cutler Hammer, for instance, makes some particular classified breakers that UL says are acceptable to put in GE, Siemens, Murray, Thomas & Betts, Square D (both Homeline and QO) and Crouse Hinds panels. (Note to Chris: Not all Cutler Hammer breakers are classified as compatible with Square D, only some of them.) Check them out at http://www.eatonelectrical.com/unsecure/cms1/SA00304001E.PDF

    As for warranties, every panel manufacturer, it seems, has similar language warning of the dire consequences that will result if another manufacturer’s breaker is used in their panel. The most curious of these is Cutler Hammer. (We make breakers that are classified for use in practically every other panel out there, but if you use someone else’s breaker in our panel, our warranty is void!) Talk about cheeky. The thing about all of this warranty voiding is that it may not be legal. The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Acthttp://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/buspubs/warranty.htm#Magnuson-Moss specifically prohibits a manufacturer from requiring the use of their own replacement parts when safe and effective alternatives are available from other manufacturers. I suppose that, to know for sure, this will someday have to be tested in court. I’m not holding my breath.

    - Jim Katen, Oregon


  6. #6
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
    Jody Humbert Guest

    Smile Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    This is two replies on the National Electric Code Internet Connection forum that I referred to earlier.

    From: Stauffer
    Dear Mike: UL tests and rates circuit breakers by one manufacture (such as Murray) for use in other manufacturers' panelboards (such as Square D). I believe this is called "classification."
    The bigger, more reputable manufacturers hate this practice and always have, but UL does it nevertheless. Therefore, I believe the panelboard manufacturer's warning label is merely a scare tactic, and that anyone can install a properly classified breaker in another brand of panel.
    Of course, there probably are breakers that are mechanically compatible with other brands of panel but that have not been classified for use in them. (Classification, like listing, costs money.) This is a grayer area for which I have no good, short answer. I guess a careful, liability-minded electrician or contractor would check his UL listing directories before installing a Brand "A" breaker in a Brand "B" panel.
    BROOKE STAUFFER, Director, NECA Codes and Standards
    From: pauleyj@squared.com
    Mike: Seems you had a wide variety of comments. Most seemed to indicate that the practice of installing something that the panelboard manufacturers label clearly prohibits would be putting yourself way out on the limb.
    Square D's position is simple. Our panelboards are clearly marked with what circuit breakers are permitted to be installed. Installation of anything contrary to that marking will void our warranty and we will certainly make that point loud and clear should something go wrong with the installation. This is not only based on our listing, but also takes into account the 40+ years of design and application expertise our engineers put into the circuit breaker/panelboard combination.
    I have seen many comments that indicate that this is only a "scare tactic,” etc. However, keep in mind that the product standards have, for many, many years, required that the panelboard be marked with the circuit breakers that are permitted to be installed, and for good reason. When manufacturer “A” says that their breaker can be installed in manufacturer “B” catalog XX-XXXX panelboard, I wonder which version of that panel they were talking about. The version made in 1998, 1993, 1989, 1985, 1980, etc? Keep in mind that the catalog number might be the same, but the design changed many times. This is where the panelboard manufacturer spends a great deal of time, making sure that things are compatible. Manufacturer “A” would have no idea what the "history" of that product was through all those years.
    The vast majority of electrical inspectors (and electrical contractors) will tell you that they go by what is marked on the panel. Do anything else, has too many variables.
    Jim Pauley, P.E.
    Square D Company

    I've also found some googled replies on various forums from over the years where a person is stating their electrician pointed out wrong breakers in a panel. The homeowner then states that they had the home inspected two years ago when they bought it and that was not called out by the inspector. The electrician then replied that most home inspectors don't know what to look for and he should have had the house inspected by licensed trades contractors who are more knowledgeable!


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    PDF #1 Has NEC code reference numbers if needed.

    PDF # 2 Shows the information on the Breaker (printed label on the side ) to consider if it is a UL " Classified Breaker"

    Only way I can see to verify if the in question breaker is UL Rated ( way beyond my scope as a HI ) would be to pull the breaker to confirm it's on
    " The List. "
    .

    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Billy Stephens; 08-07-2008 at 10:56 PM. Reason: spelling
    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.

  8. #8
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
    Jody Humbert Guest

    Talking Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Once again, thanks for all the info. Knowledge is king!!!!


  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Brandon, the first 2 links didn't work for me. Did anyone else have this problem?
    Quote Originally Posted by Brandon Whitmore View Post
    I hope Jim doesn't mind me posting this here:
    I wrote this in 2005:

    I’d advise treading carefully when condemning off-brand breakers. Sometimes, it’s not a violation.

    If a breaker manufacturer pays for it, Underwriters Laboratories will test and “classify” one manufacturer’s breakers for use in another manufacturer’s panel. These breakers are known – not surprisingly – as “classified breakers.” From both a safety and a code perspective, these breakers are perfectly acceptable to use in the panels for which they’re listed. When you buy them, the breakers come with a long list of panels that are acceptable to put them in.

    Check out the UL guide for these breakers at http://database.ul.com/cgi-bin/XYV/template/LISEXT/1FRAME/showpage.html?name=DIXF.GuideInfo&ccnshorttitle=Ci rcuit Breakers, Molded-case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment&objid=1074081964&cfgid=1073741824&versio n=versionless&parent_id=1073

    Cutler Hammer, for instance, makes some particular classified breakers that UL says are acceptable to put in GE, Siemens, Murray, Thomas & Betts, Square D (both Homeline and QO) and Crouse Hinds panels. (Note to Chris: Not all Cutler Hammer breakers are classified as compatible with Square D, only some of them.) Check them out at http://www.eatonelectrical.com/unsecure/cms1/SA00304001E.PDF

    As for warranties, every panel manufacturer, it seems, has similar language warning of the dire consequences that will result if another manufacturer’s breaker is used in their panel. The most curious of these is Cutler Hammer. (We make breakers that are classified for use in practically every other panel out there, but if you use someone else’s breaker in our panel, our warranty is void!) Talk about cheeky. The thing about all of this warranty voiding is that it may not be legal. The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Acthttp://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/buspubs/warranty.htm#Magnuson-Moss specifically prohibits a manufacturer from requiring the use of their own replacement parts when safe and effective alternatives are available from other manufacturers. I suppose that, to know for sure, this will someday have to be tested in court. I’m not holding my breath.

    - Jim Katen, Oregon



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,246

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Quote Originally Posted by Brandon Whitmore View Post
    I hope Jim doesn't mind me posting this here:
    I wrote this in 2005:

    I’d advise treading carefully when condemning off-brand breakers. Sometimes, it’s not a violation.

    (I removed the rest of the quote to make this shorter - see Brandon's post for the removed content.)

    - Jim Katen, Oregon
    It's always a violation ... and it may not be.

    That is the best answer.

    The panelboard manufacturers test *their* breakers in *their* panelboards when the panelboards are tested, listed and labeled *and that labeling* rules for that panelboard.

    UL does, however, "Classify" breakers made by one manufacturer for use in other manufacturers panelboards, and those breakers go through rigorous testing.

    The catch is:

    a) To follow the listing and labeling *of the listed and labeled panelboard*, only the breakers specified for use in that panelboard on that panelboards labeling are allowed to be used in that panelboard. LU says so. It really is that plain and simple.

    b) To follow the listing and labeling *of the classified breakers*, they can be installed in any panelboard included in their compatibility list. UL says so. It really is that plain and simple.

    c) The manufacturer of the panelboard which has *other than their own* breakers in it will deny any warranty coverage on that panelboard should anything happen. That means that the deep pockets will be gone should anything happen. Just read what Jim Pauley with Square D stated: "Square D's position is simple. Our panelboards are clearly marked with what circuit breakers are permitted to be installed. Installation of anything contrary to that marking will void our warranty and we will certainly make that point loud and clear should something go wrong with the installation." It really is that simple.

    Huh? "It really is that simple."? Yep.

    If you want to replace your deep pockets for those of the manufacturer of the panel, go ahead and 'not write them up'.I'm sure that Siemens (as one example) will gladly step in and back you should a problem occur when their breakers are installed in a Square D panelboard and Square D backs out of the picture. Just call them and ask them. And, by the way, if they do say they will back you - get it in writing.

    Then ask your attorney if you can rely on that to protect you. I suspect your attorney's response will be something like 'Possibly, but you will likely have to sue them to get them to back up their letter.'

    Just how deep are your pockets? Do you want to take the chance and find out?

    I’d advise treading carefully when condemning off-brand breakers. Sometimes, it’s not a violation.

    (I removed the rest of the quote to make this shorter - see Brandon's post for the removed content.)

    Jim Katen, Oregon
    Jim Katen, Oregon says: "it’s not a violation" (using a classified breaker within their compatibility list even though the breaker is being used in a panel which does not list that breaker in its listing and labeling)

    Jerry Peck, Florida says: "it's a violation of the panelboard listing" (using breakers not included in the listing) and "it's not a violation of the breaker classification" (using classified breakers within their compatibility list)

    Jerry Peck, Florida also says: "if you put one 'it is a violation' and one 'it is not a violation' together, you still have one 'it is a violation' "

    If the electrician want to overrule you, tell them to get it in writing from the AHJ.

    If the AHJ states it is okay in writing, don't change your report, but keep that letter in your file and put it with your report, for both you and your client - your client may need it when they go to sell. The AHJ can overrule you, let them, but remember: they can't be sued, you can. "It is still a violation."

    In my opinion, if UL wants to allow breakers in a panel other than those tested, listed and labeled for the panel when the panel was tested, listed and labeled, ... let UL change the wording on the original panel listing and labeling and state: "or any breaker UL classifies in the future for use in this panel". In which case, it would no longer be a violation.

    But, I have to wonder just how many manufacturers of panelboards would test and list and label to that revised wording, knowing that they would have no control over the breakers to be used in their panel.

    Square D? I seriously doubt it.

    Siemens? I seriously doubt they would want Square D to make breakers for their panels and for those Square D breakers to be installed in their panels. I suspect they would take the same stance that Square D is taking.

    Added with edit: Think of it this way - If you take two pure breed dogs and mate them, will you get a pure breed dog? Of course not, you will get a mutt. Neither parent will take responsibility for the damages done by the mutt.

    Same thing when combining a different brand breaker in a panel not listed and labeled for that breaker. Neither manufacturer will take responsibility for damages.

    Last edited by Jerry Peck; 08-08-2008 at 09:46 AM.
    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  11. #11
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
    Jody Humbert Guest

    Smile Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Thanks to everyone for your advice. Jerry, my AHJ doesn't seem to have an opinion. The local inspectors refer me to licensed electricians in the county. They only seem to see new construction panels. Funny how all the breakers in the new construction panels are the same brand as the panel! Have a great weekend.


  12. #12

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Sorry Ken,

    The links are from 2005........ they must not exist any longer. I didn't check them prior to posting.


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Snowbird (this means I'm retired and migrate between locations), FL/MI
    Posts
    4,086

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Updated Files, Data, and Links.

    Eaton (Cutler Hammer) CL and CHQ Classified Listed Breaker AND Enclosed Panelboard and Meter Enclosure Compatibility CROSS REFERENCE LIST is attached at the bottom as a PDF file. If you Visit Eaton's web site you might be able to find it (its difficult without a/the document number - most information on their website will just find cross reference lists of breaker substitution compatibility by breaker cat. no. - not sufficient - must verify Mfg. Cat. No. of the enclosed panelboard or meter enclosure as well). If you do wish to find the document directly go to eaton.com and in the "search" box type the document number, which is: IL00304001Y .


    Updated Classified UL File Links are below the quote box

    Following is the Link to the DIXF.GuideInfo file (for Classified Breakers) which is quoted below the link

    DIXF.GuideInfo - Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment


    Quote Originally Posted by UL DIXF.GuideInfo

    DIXF.GuideInfo
    Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment

    {Circuit Breakers} Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment

    See General Information for Circuit Breakers



    GENERAL

    This category covers molded-case circuit breakers rated 15 to 60 A, 120/240 V maximum that have been investigated and found suitable for use in place of other Listed circuit breakers in specific Listed panelboards, with ratings not exceeding 225 A, 120/240 V ac, to be connected to circuits having an available system short-circuit current of 10 kA maximum. The circuit breakers are Classified for use in specified panelboards in accordance with the details described on the circuit breaker or in the publication provided therewith.

    In addition, Classified molded-case circuit breakers may also be Listed with additional features such as a ground-fault trip element, ground-fault circuit interrupter, arc-fault circuit interrupter, secondary surge arrester, transient-voltage surge suppressor, and the like.

    PRODUCT MARKINGS

    A circuit breaker that is Classified only is marked on the side with the statement:

    "Classified for use only in specified panelboards where the available short-circuit current is 10 kA, 120/240 volts ac or less. Do not use in equipment connected to circuits having an available system short-circuit current in excess of 10 kA, 120/240 volts ac. For catalog numbers (or equivalent) of specified panelboards, refer to Publication No.______ provided with this circuit breaker. If additional information is necessary, contact [Classified circuit breaker manufacturer's name]."

    A circuit breaker that is both Classified and Listed is marked on the side with the statement:
    "This circuit breaker is Listed for use in circuit breaker enclosures and panelboards intended and marked for its use. This circuit breaker is Classified for use, where the available short-circuit current is 10 kA, 120/240 V ac or less, in the compatible panelboards shown in Publication No. ______ provided with this circuit breaker. When used as a Classified circuit breaker, do not use in equipment connected to circuits having an available system short-circuit current in excess of 10 kA, 120/240 V ac. If additional information is necessary, contact [Classified circuit breaker manufacturer's name]."
    The referenced publication is a compatibility list which tabulates the company name, catalog number, number of poles and electrical ratings of the Classified circuit breaker, in addition to the company name and catalog number of the applicable UL Listed panelboards, and corresponding UL Listed circuit breakers in place of which the Classified circuit breaker has been investigated. The compatibility list also details the maximum permissible voltage and maximum available short circuit current of the supply system to the panelboard. The Classified circuit breaker is not suitable for the specified application if the system supply characteristics exceed the maximum values indicated in the compatibility list. One copy of the compatibility list is provided with each circuit breaker.

    Circuit breakers which are both Classified and Listed have markings as above, with the addition of the Listing Mark, located on the side of the circuit breaker.

    RELATED PRODUCTS

    For information on markings, see Circuit Breakers, Molded Case and Circuit-breaker Enclosures (DIVQ) and Circuit Breakers (DHJR).


    For those Classified molded-case circuit breakers containing additional features, see:
    Arc-fault Circuit Interrupters, Branch/Feeder Type (AVZQ)


    Arc-fault Circuit Interrupters, Combination Type (AWAH)
    Circuit Breakers and Surge-protective Devices (DIMV)
    Circuit Breakers with Equipment Ground-fault Protection (DIYA) Circuit Breaker and Ground-fault Circuit Interrupters (DKUY)
    ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

    For additional information, see Circuit Breakers (DHJR) and Electrical Equipment for Use in Ordinary Locations (AALZ).

    REQUIREMENTS

    The basic standards used to investigate products in this category are ANSI/UL 489, "Molded-Case Circuit Breakers, Molded-Case Switches and Circuit-Breaker Enclosures," and ANSI/UL 67, "Panelboards."

    UL MARK

    The Classification Mark of Underwriters Laboratories Inc. on the product is the only method provided by UL to identify products manufactured under its Classification and Follow-Up Service. The Classification Mark appears on the side of the circuit breaker and consists of the words "Underwriters Laboratories Inc. Classified Circuit Breaker" together with a control number. The words "Underwriters Laboratories Inc." may be abbreviated "Underwriters Lab. Inc." or "Und. Lab. Inc."

    The following mark: appears on the front, visible surface of the circuit breaker.

    UL, in performing its functions in accordance with its objectives, does not assume or undertake to discharge any responsibility of the manufacturer or any other party. UL shall not incur any obligation or liability for any loss, expense or damages, including incidental or consequential damages, arising out of or in connection with the use, interpretation of, or reliance upon this Guide Information.

    Last Updated: 2011-03-11

    Copyright © 2011 Underwriters Laboratories Inc.®
    Reprinted from the Online Certifications Directory with permission from Underwriters Laboratories Inc.


    "Model Number information is not published for all product categories. If you require information about a specific model number, please contact Customer Service for further assistance."

    There are four files. Three are Eaton's, one is Siemens,

    Information and links are as follows:

    They are:

    Eaton: DIXF.E7819 Last Updated 1999-02-24
    LINK:

    DIXF.E7819 - Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment


    Eaton: DIXF.E45310 Last updated on 2002-06-13
    LINK:

    DIXF.E45310 - Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment

    Eaton: DIXF.E11713 Last updated on 1998-02-12
    LINK:

    DIXF.E11713 - Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment

    and

    Siemens Industry Inc.: File DIXF.E82615 Last updated on 2005-07-13
    LINK:

    DIXF.E82615 - Circuit Breakers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment

    Guide Information for DIXF, Circuit Brekaers, Molded Case, Classified for Use in Specified Equipment:




    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 05-19-2011 at 09:05 PM.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,546

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Square D breakers for a Square D panel, Siemens for Siemens, Cutler for Cutler, ok.

    What if it's a Westinghouse, GE or ITE panel? No longer in production, but there are replacements available that are not listed on the antique labels.

    Here's what I do ............

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,365

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    This whole issue is so convloluted that, unless there is a physical connection issue, I don't comment. Electricians laugh at us for bringing it up. County inspectors? They don't care. Documentation? Merky and confusing at very best. It's just not worth the fight. There are no HI SOPs I've ever seen that even come close to pinning us down to make a call on this. IMO, there are bigger fish to fry.....


  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,546

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Fellman View Post
    This whole issue is so convloluted that, unless there is a physical connection issue, I don't comment. Electricians laugh at us for bringing it up. County inspectors? They don't care.
    The client may not be laughing when he gets billed for a house call.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    2,777

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Jody,
    You are making an observation not a determination. If you see..."panels that have specific manufacturer labels stating "Use only ....... brand breakers type ".... and you observe other manufact breakers used then just say what you have observed. Leave determination of breaker application to the discretion of the client and/or their electrician. The panel says what it says. Is it absolute? As far as the labeling goes it is. In the real practical world there is an alternate reality.

    Get beat up and enjoy it for doing a good job.

    When questioned let the electrician provide the determination and take responsibility for all of the breakers their application and any other potential legal issues.


  18. #18

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    My concern is that there are instances of insurance companies trying to subrogate
    the claim against another source if there is any possible way. Insurance companies were not so keen on risk management 20 years ago. Now it's a major part of management in their world. Given this would be a prime way to recoup a fire damage claim, I'm calling it out. I understand that they can fit. In fact, I have a GE panel that is only rated to take THQL or similar from GE. They do NOT offer an option for a THQP (the half sized models). Siemens makes one the physically fits. However the GE THQLs each have their own plug to connect to the buss. The Siemens has one plug for the buss, and it feeds both sides of the breaker. I suspect that GE is attempting to keep the load balanced between the lines. Or maybe their in this panel cannot carry that much current. What ever the reason, if there is a fire from the panel board location, guess who they are going to look back at? Me, for installing a Siemens double in a single GE panel space. Just my two cents worth.

    "My existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives. You don't want the truth because deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall, you NEED me on that wall."

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    112

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Quote Originally Posted by Jody Humbert View Post
    Hi everyone. I have been writing up any panels that have specific manufacturer labels stating "Use only ....... brand breakers type ....... " when I observe that different brands are installed. I have been getting beat up by the electricians in my county that this is not correct, and there are breakers that interchange in many different panels. County inspectors don't appear to have to deal with this since most all new construction have brand new panels with the same breakers. Is there any specific (NEC) information that I can print to back up that this may be voiding liability of the manufacturer in the event of any problem with their panel? Any info is greatly appreciated. I am new to the site and very impressed with the knowledge that all the inspectors pass on to those of us that are still absorbing alot in this industry. Thank you
    Condemning a panel because it contains breakers of a brand other than the panel brand, is incorrect. As others have stated, all breakers are UL tested, and if approved, are listed and carry the UL trademark. The warning label cited in another response, says "can" cause injury, not "will" cause injury. This simply means Square D will not provide warranty protection when other brands of breakers are used. That disclaimer goes without saying. As a Home Inspector, it is not within your capacity to condemn such things. Rather, you will simply make a note of your observation in your report. Such as; "Square D panel contains Homelite breakers." You can recommend follow up by a licensed electrician, and make note of their response. By continuing to condemn the breaker/panel combination, after the electrician says it is ok, suggests you are assuming the role of an electrical engineer. On that point, I will challenge you to find an electrical engineer who would agree with you. If you are not going to accept what the electrician says, except if they agree with you, then you are displaying a bit of misplaced arrogance.


  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Wrong brand of breaker in panel

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy Roberts View Post
    Condemning a panel because it contains breakers of a brand other than the panel brand, is incorrect. As others have stated, all breakers are UL tested, and if approved, are listed and carry the UL trademark. The warning label cited in another response, says "can" cause injury, not "will" cause injury. This simply means Square D will not provide warranty protection when other brands of breakers are used. That disclaimer goes without saying. As a Home Inspector, it is not within your capacity to condemn such things. Rather, you will simply make a note of your observation in your report. Such as; "Square D panel contains Homelite breakers." You can recommend follow up by a licensed electrician, and make note of their response. By continuing to condemn the breaker/panel combination, after the electrician says it is ok, suggests you are assuming the role of an electrical engineer. On that point, I will challenge you to find an electrical engineer who would agree with you. If you are not going to accept what the electrician says, except if they agree with you, then you are displaying a bit of misplaced arrogance.
    Statement From Square D ( taken from Mike Holt's site.)


    Mike: Seems you had a wide variety of comments. Most seemed to indicate that the practice of installing something that the panelboard manufacturers label clearly prohibits would be putting yourself way out on the limb.
    Square D's position is simple. Our panelboards are clearly marked with what circuit breakers are permitted to be installed. Installation of anything contrary to that marking will void our warranty and we will certainly make that point loud and clear should something go wrong with the installation. This is not only based on our listing, but also takes into account the 40+ years of design and application expertise our engineers put into the circuit breaker/panelboard combination.
    I have seen many comments that indicate that this is only a "scare tactic," etc. However, keep in mind that the product standards have, for many, many years, required that the panelboard be marked with the circuit breakers that are permitted to be installed, and for good reason. When manufacturer "A" says that their breaker can be installed in manufacturer "B" catalog XX-XXXX panelboard, I wonder which version of that panel they were talking about. The version made in 1998, 1993, 1989, 1985, 1980, etc? Keep in mind that the catalog number might be the same, but the design changed many times. This is where the panelboard manufacturer spends a great deal of time, making sure that things are compatible. Manufacturer "A" would have no idea what the "history" of that product was through all those years.
    The vast majority of electrical inspectors (and electrical contractors) will tell you that they go by what is marked on the panel. Do anything else, has too many variables.
    Jim Pauley, P.E.
    Square D Company

    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
  •