Circuit breaker wiring, stranded AL grounding conductors, Cutler Hammer

^Is this considered a double tap on a Cutler Hammer circuit breaker?^

^Is dividing a bare stranded aluminum grounding conductor allowed so that it can be fit under several different lugs on a grounding bus bar in a Cutler Hammer panel?

The manufacturer’s label did not appear to shed light on these issues.

Adam, @rmeier2 and @jmilby are some of the best here to help out also. Along with others. :wink:

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From here that looks like a multi-strand AL conductor that is improperly installed but hard to tell.

Also that overspray is a problem.

A wider shot would be helpful, did you get any?


Usually when I see a multi-strand AL conductor, the entire thing is under one lug, and not usually split up under several different smaller lugs.

Overspray is a problem? Where can I read more about that kind of problem?

You’re correct about the multi-strand, if indeed that’s what it is, I really can’t definitively determine anything from the pictures you posted.

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Kevin, I couldn’t tell much about the AL multi-strand either, other than to see that they all came from one hole at the bottom of the panel. No sheathing was visible for them.

Thank you for the link about the overspray issue. It was helpful to finally read where it’s addressed in the National Electric Code.

I don’t believe that is acceptable.

And the overspray is a problem.


To accept 2 wires, I believe the breaker needs to look like this:


Those are some helpful illustrations @lkage. I guess earlier I should have Googled: Cutler Hammer breakers that accept two conductors.

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Great article on over spray. Thanks for that.

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If all those strands are from one cable they should be terminated in one lug or hole in the bus. There are adapters for larger wire sizes to allow larger conductor terminations.

The side of the breakers will show if 2 conductors are acceptable and the sizes and materials allowed.

Thanks Tom. Nice to be acknowledged.

Jim, you and you knowledge are appreciated. Sometimes we forget to say THAMKS! :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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Thank you, Jim. I have seen such adapters for larger wire sizes to allow larger conductor terminations.

I will try to read the side of the breakers next time I have a question about whether or not 2 conductors are acceptable.

Thank you so much, @jmilby !