Distribution panels

In NC we are required to report the location(s) and inspect all distribution panels. Ther NC SOP also says that we have to remove the covers on
“auxiliary distribution panels”.

A question came up today at the NCLHIA training seminar in Wilmington as to whether or not the HVAC single disconnect boxes are considered distribution panels.

The boxes or panels differ in many ways, some have only a switch, some use a breaker and some have larger size wire coming in than leaving.
(The post is only about the ones that have just one load device attached)

About half of the inspectors indicated that they do not open these.
I do open these since I find loose or burned connections in about 15 percent of them.

Does anyone have a definition of these that will indicate whether or not they are considered distribution panels?

**From the NEC:


Distribution Panelboard. See definition of panelboard in
Article 100.

Panelboard. A single panel or group of panel units designed
for assembly in the form of a single panel, including buses
and automatic overcurrent devices, and equipped with or
without switches for the control of light, heat, or power
circuits; designed to be placed in a cabinet or cutout box
placed in or against a wall, partition, or other support; and
accessible only from the front.

Don’t know if that’s helpful or not.

That helps, but brings the definition of buses into the equation.

I found a few that had burned connections under the breaker that required replacement of the whole box. This could cost anywhere from $125 to $275 and you would think that the a SOP would and should make it clear whether or not an HI is responsible for inspecting these.

It all goes back to what I kept saying on here when I first started, The SOPS need updating!
No wonder ASTM found the opportunity to make some money!
This business needs to get its act together and decide what HI’s are supposed to do with the half dozen or so common items that everyone does different.