Condo Panels

The “six throw rule” (not 5) means six or less, switches or breakers.

A 120V circuit (single-pole breaker) counts as one
A 240V circuit (double-pole, internal or external tie) counts as one
Two 120V MWBC’s with an external tie counts as one

You’re correct Jeff. I apologize for posting in haste.



NEC 230.71
Maximum Number of Disconnects.
(A) General. The service disconnecting means for each service permitted by 230.2, or for each set of service-entrance conductors permitted by 230.40, Exception Nos. 1, 3, 4, or 5, shall consist of not more than six switches or sets of circuit breakers, or a combination of not more than six switches and sets of circuit breakers, mounted in a single enclosure, in a group of separate enclosures, or in or on a switchboard. There shall be not more than six sets of disconnects per service grouped in any one location. For the purpose of this section, disconnecting means used solely for power monitoring equipment, surge protective devices, or the control circuit of the ground-fault protection system or power-operable service disconnecting means, installed as part of the listed equipment, shall not be considered a service disconnecting means.


Here are two helpful PDF’s going through Art 230 involving service entrance installations.

Service Entrance Pt 1

Service Entrance Pt 2


I hate most code write ups as I feel a need to learn Latin or “doublespeak”
Jeff does this apply to both main and sub panels as well ?

A certain well known Inspector not to mention many other threads and posts through the years argued 6 swipes of a open hand (never mind who) so… will…cement this in my head now.

Please explain in English here…lol

Oh see you posted above me .

Very nice…:slight_smile:

You’ve seen the size of his paws…he can take care of a 42 space panel with one swipe.:smiley:


Bill, it could be six single poles in a panel in a garden shed or 6 multi-pole breakers in others. It is not counted by how many you can operate at the same time.

Remote panels in an attached structure do not need a main.

Again, it does not apply to PANELS.

There is no requirement that a PANEL have a disconnect. It applies to the BUILDING - more accurately, the service conductors of the building.

The service conductors of the building are required to have a disconnect. As Jim pointed out, it can be a group of switches/breakers (no more than six), or a single disconnect.

OK so if there are 30 breakers at a sub and the main panel near the service entry has 6 breakers all is good, if I once and for all understand this correctly once and for all here.

To restate : A main breaker is not required at the main panel or the sub.
The sub has zero requirements and no 6 throw rule applies.
The main panel also is not required to have a main breaker but the six throw rule does apply.

The confusion sets in because of the term throw rather than breaker.

Sure a double is technically a set or pair but we think of a double as one on the practice side of things.

Sorry to digress but we do say things such as “you have two double breakers” rather than “oh you have 4 breakers with two sets of tie bars” :slight_smile:

Bob, there are several issues above. As Jeff stated the panel does not require a disconnect. It is the building that requires the disconnect. This is commonly supplied at the panel or a standalone disconnect.

A remote panel in an attached structure does not require a disconnect means. If in a detached structure it would need to fall under the 6 throws or less or it needs a main.

Breaking it down…

OK ,assuming you are correct I now have it exactly correct which actually is what I always thought.
Sorry to bust nuts but the subject can be confusing due to the mis information in many posts I have seen and from others .:wink:

Assuming I’m correct… you’re funny :smiley:

I said assuming I am correct and I always assume I am so it is safe to assume you are correct assuming we both are that it is safe to assume we assume the same thing.
Perhaps I assume too much.

Jeff, I disagree with some of your answers to Bob E. Without additional qualifications your answers could be correct or incorrect.

Also the issue of the disconnect being in many panels is the disconnect means for the building. Your answer makes it seem like there may not be a means of disconnect. It all depends on the terminology.

Jim could you give a few examples ?

Bob, please see post #18.

I understand Jim, and I agree, my answers are very general. For most home inspectors, however, this is what they need to hear in order to understand.

I was actually quite surprised that this was the second time in a week where I heard an inspector was under the impression that “hand movements” were considered for the “six throw rule.” Apparently, there’s someone spreading some really bad information.

I will always defer to you, Robert, Mike and several others as the experts and I will keep my HI hat on :smiley:

Bob, this might be easier on the phone. Could you PM a means of contact and the best times to try and reach you?