Defining "Service Drop"

I’m confused over what is considered a “service drop.” Is it only the service feed from pole-mounted wires or does the service from underground wires also constitute a “service drop?” New to this, so go easy if I’ve just asked an silly question.


This is what I do.

overhead service drop , or underground service lateral


A service drop applies to an overhead service. The drop would be the typical triplex conductors that come from the pole to the structure. The service point would be where the wires coming out of the weatherhead connect to the drop. Here’s the NEC definitions:

Service Drop.
The overhead conductors between the serving utility and the service point.

Service Point.
The point of connection between the facilities of the serving utility and the premises wiring.


I have been in it for years. KISS.

Overhead - Underground.

This is from our state electrical inspection form for manf. homes.

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Here is some more information that may help:


Morning, Charles.
Hope to find you well and in good spirits today.
First off, there are no silly questions. All questions are pertinent to the individual asking.

Service Drop; for an electric power distribution by a PoCp, Power Company.
The service drop is the 3 conductors from an overhead electrical line running from a utility pole to a clients home or building. It is not an Underground Laterial.

Law defines Underground Lateral as; an underground facility that is used to transmit, distribute, or furnish gas, electricity, communications, or water from a common source to an end-use customer.

Building a home inspection report would have a space in the electrical section of the report one would report, Overhead Service Drop, the conductor material, Coper or Aluminum if visible, condition of the service drop cables and clearance to the building or ground, approximate size of the service in Amps, then you move onto main disconnect and ampacity, or at least in the reporting software I use.

Hope that helps.