Can a main panel be a sub if??

Home yesterday had lots of messes.
Main panel had 100 amp service wire running to another main panel, which was outside on a pole. (must have used the old temp)

The outside sub fed power to the garage sub panel.

The outside sub panel had a 200 amp breaker, and was also grounded by copper wire to the ground.

The 100 amp wire coming to and from both panels lacked the isolated ground.

Is the extra panel sufficent with the ground wire or should it have been an actual sub panel??

There is only one panel that can be called the “main.” This is more correctly referred to as the “service equipment.” Everything else is load-side equipment or “sub” panels.

The answer to your question **“Can a main panel be a sub if??” **is NO.

OK so since it would be considered a sub panel, then I guess the wiring should have included the ground? Also the ground wire for the outside panel was done improperly. Correct??
Just out of curiosities sake wouldn’t the ground wire for the outside be sufficent?

The whole house was a disaster and the buyers walked. Actualy the agent killed the deal for me. i never even got to tell them first.

So at the pole you had your service drop and a 100amp panel which was connected to a grounding electrode?

From there you went to another panel within the dwelling?

Prior to the 2008 NEC you were permitted to use the grounded conductor for grounding if you went to a separate structure. The one sticking point was that the two structures could not have metallic paths between them (water pipe, phone line, etc.). The second structure was then treated like a normal service with a bond between the grounded and grounding conductors and connection to a grounding electrode(s).

I know it gets worse the more I try to explain it. Basicaly both panels (home and outside sub) were wired up as a main panel. The temp must have never been changed. A 100 amp breaker from the main fed the outside. The wire was actualy ran underground.
From there it fed the garage sub. ( which was not isolated btw)
Would it be ok from a safety (not proper) standpoint to leave the outside panel wired up this way or should it have been isolated.

Sorry I misunderstood, so the main service is in the house, that feeder feeds the panel on the pole, the panel mounted on a pole then provides a feeder to the garage? Just trying to decipher exactly what you have so that I don’t give you misinformation. :smiley:

Yes that is correct.
Both big panels are wired up like a main.
question was should the 2nd outside panel been wired up as a sub, or since it is grounded will this safely work?

Sean did the lights come on in the house? if so why are picking apart, Just get er done lol

IMO the two sub-panels (pole and garage) should operate normally. As I said earlier this arrangement was permitted by the NEC in code versions prior to 2008 if no metallic paths existed between the two structures. Each structure should have a connection to a grounding electrode and a bond between the grounded and grounding conductor.