Is splicing feeders allowed?

That’s 2011, not enforced in my state. The following is not my work, full credit goes to Jerry Peck:
The practice itself of splicing on within the panel enclosure is allowed provided that the conductor terminate within the panel enclosure and does not go through the panel enclosure as panels are not tested, listed, or labeled for use as a raceway, which is what doing that would make it.

From the 2008 NEC (this has not be changed for a long time). (underlining and bold are mine)

  • 312.8 Enclosures for Switches or Overcurrent Devices.
    • Enclosures for switches or overcurrent devices **shall not be used as **junction boxes, auxiliary gutters, or raceways for conductors feeding through or tapping off to other switches or overcurrent devices, unless adequate space **for this purpose **is provided. The conductors shall not fill the wiring space at any cross section to more than 40 percent of the cross-sectional area of the space, and the conductors, splices, and taps shall not fill the wiring space at any cross section to more than 75 percent of the cross-sectional area of that space.

Based on my discussions with Senior Engineers at UL and reviewing UL Standard 67 to which panelboard enclosures are listed and labeled, no manufacturer has test, listed or labeled an enclosure with space provided for that purpose, thus it is not allowed. The last sentence only applies when (when meaning at some time in the future if a manufacture tests for that) … when a manufacturer decides to test, list and label an enclosure with space provided for that purpose. With none having done so.

Codeman

The statement just meant that you needed space ie you cannot put 5 pounds in a sack unless there is room for the 5 pounds. It would be impossible for a testing agency to test for all the possible conditions, especially if you tried to construe that the space needed to be specifically identified or delineated. The revised wording is further proof that your interpretation was never intended.

IIRC Jerry has revised his take on this article after discussions at length about this.

I agree with Jim and Paul, this section when taken as a whole, meaning both sentences allows splices. Bolding words out of context does not prove your point:

312.8 Enclosures for Switches or Overcurrent Devices.**
Enclosures for switches or overcurrent devices shall** not be
used as junction boxes
, auxiliary gutters, or raceways for con-
ductors feeding through or tapping off to other switches or
overcurrent devices, unless adequate space for this purpose is
provided.
The conductors shall not fill the wiring space at any
cross section to more than 40 percent of the cross-sectional
area of the space, and the conductors, splices, and taps shall
not fill the wiring space at any cross section to more than
75 percent of the cross-sectional area of that space.

Is there currently a panel board UL listed for over-current protection devices and/or switches that is UL listed for use as a raceway? Also, is the panel board the original poster was referring to one of those panels?

And it may end up being right, but it does make for good conversation. And, as an added bonus, others who may run into the same thing will now know the answer. And not just memorized responses, actual understanding of the code. I sent a response to Mr. Port as I was generally interested. Don’t forget, the NEC isn’t proposed to determine future conditions or uses, this is stated in: [FONT=Times-Bold][size=2]
**90.1 Purpose. ***[FONT=Times-Bold][size=2][FONT=Times-Bold][size=2]
(B) Adequacy. **[/size][/size][/FONT][FONT=Times-Roman][size=2]This [/size][/FONT]
[FONT=Times-Italic][size=2]Code *[/size][/FONT][FONT=Times-Roman][size=2]contains provisions that are considered necessary for safety. Compliance therewith and proper maintenance results in an installation that is essentially free from hazard but not necessarily efficient, convenient, or adequate for good service or future expansion of electrical use.
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Firstly, I will respectfully agree to disagree with Mr. Peck—Now, the provision stated in 312.8 was in the 2008 NEC. It was just not written in the new list format. Here is what was written in the 2008 NEC.

312.8 Enclosures for Switches or Overcurrent Devices.
Enclosures for switches or overcurrent devices shall not be
used as junction boxes, auxiliary gutters, or raceways for conductors
feeding through or tapping off to other switches or
overcurrent devices, unless adequate space for this purpose is
provided. The conductors shall not fill the wiring space at any
cross section to more than 40 percent of the cross-sectional
area of the space, and the conductors, splices, and taps shall
not fill the wiring space at any cross section to more than
75 percent of the cross-sectional area of that space.

FYI- The space is clearly provided but is it adequate. It is up to the electrical installer to know how to apply the percentage requirements. Opening it into the list format makes it easier to take bites…but the intent is still the same in Florida under the 2008 NEC.

Now I will dig into your UL 67 statement a bit. Here is the scope of UL 67 in summary.
1 Scope

1.1 These requirements cover panelboards to be employed in accordance with the National Electrical Code, NFPA 70.

1.2 These requirements cover panelboards for the control and protection of electric lighting and appliance branch circuits, and power circuits, including feeder distribution panelboards. They also cover units specifically designed for panelboard assembly.

The combination evaluation of UL 67 is for the Cabinet, Panelboard and bus assembly as reviewed as such…if you remove the panelboard and bus assembly you have retained a Cabinet, remove the cover and replace with a solid equivalent steel cover that meets NEC 314.41 and you have an unlisted junction box that meets the minimum construction guidelines of part III of 314.

Lastly the original title of the thread was " is splicing feeders allowed " so that was the basis of the responses. ON a different note, the IAEI recently published a code change analysis image that also is very interesting as it would be virtually impossible not to have splices in this situation…are you saying an empty, well constructed NEMA 1 Enclosure would not be as adequate as any unlisted junction box that is not required to be UL Evaluated anyway…if constructed in accordance with part III of 314?

Code Analysis from IAEI -

Analysis of Change
There are times when a service upgrade occurs at dwelling units. This action can sometimes involve a panelboard relocation even a short distance from the original location. This situation can easily result in the existing branch circuit conductors being too short to reach their new location at the new panelboard. Often times, these branch circuits are spliced and extended using the old panelboard cabinet as a junction box, with the busbars removed. This is a good example of an extension or modification that will be exempted from AFCI protection with this new exception to 210.12(B). These type issues are often topics of discussion at IAEI meetings, as well as other educational meetings, and do need some clarification.

There has been varied interpretation and enforcement of situations like this over the past three years. This new exception will help clarify which extensions and modifications require AFCI protection and which ones will not. This will clarify that extending branch circuit conductors within an enclosure for the purposes of replacing a device or utilization equipment or for extending a branch circuit to a panelboard being replaced or upgraded does not require an AFCI protective device to be installed. A distance of 1.8 m (6 ft) was chosen for branch circuit extensions in this exception as this length should provide a sufficient length for most applications where an existing panelboard is being relocated out of a clothes closet or to comply with readily accessible requirements, etc.

To me…when the components that are evaluated to UL 67 are gone, if it meets the requirements of a junction box, constructed to the minimum standards of any unlisted junction box in Part III or 314 then it gets installed and updated to meet all of the Art 314 requirements…while some boxes to require listings(depending on use)…again not all do.

PANELENCLOSURE.jpg

Please read the sentences in their entirety and without bolding or parsing the words. You are changing the context and making the code say something it does not.

Respectfully…thank you. Like I said in my original response to your post, it was my understanding that the panel board was being left in place and used as a raceway. This, as my understanding was, was not the listed use of the enclosure…and you verified that. Thank you for your opinion, I was interested in hearing a different approach…

That was most likely my description that confused things, the code reference was for determining that the enclosure was now classified as a raceway…not specifically for use as determining compliance…if that makes sense. The UL listing is what my main point was…

NAH…I happen to agree with Mike…it’s Jerry who I disagree with;-)

Additional information - The Cabinets to which the panelboards are installed are evaluated to UL 50. As I stated earlier, the cabinet is defined as such by the NEC.

Cabinet. An enclosure that is designed for either surface mounting or flush mounting and is provided with a frame, mat, or trim in which a swinging door or doors are or can be hung.

a panelboard is defined as such…

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.

Overall I wrote a whitepaper some years back explaining the process of modular panelboards for NEMA and it explains that each component (like this example) has it’s own individual evaluation. When the are assembled together that are subject to UL 67 as a whole assembly yet keeping in mind that each individual component (Cabinet) was already evaluated to it’s own standard, in this case UL 50. This was authenticated by UL field engineers as well and submitted and vetted through all of the major manufacturers.

With all due respect, I believe you are readying WAY more into the sentence structure of the NEC in 312.8 and.it’s a cabinet…and in turn could also as stated earlier be a simple junction box as well as long as it meets the minimum requirements of such for an unlisted, Part III of Article 314 junction box.

lol…:mrgreen:

The problem is, UL 50 is not the original intended purpose of the enclosure. UL 50: 1.3 Where an individual product standard contains requirements that are at variance with those of this standard, the requirements of the individual product standard take precedence

+1 Jerry isn’t always right.

This thread discussion reminds me of the book about a punctuation and a panda that eats shoots and leaves vs eats, shoots, and leaves. Amazing how those little dots of ink can change the context of the words.

Aside form the original poster’s question:

This makes more sense, but it would create some issues…Specifically, would the manufacturer consider the product warranteed for it’s intended prupose? While this doesn’t seem important at first glance, you do have to take into consideration what the actual patent holder would take liability for. Just thinking out loud, lets say you have 35-40 circuit conductors(on older homes, there is usually more conductors than over-current devices due to splices and additional circuits/conductors) coming into a panel board that you now want to relocate. The new location prohibits direct routing of the conductors to the new panel board, so you use the original cabinet as a you stated above and splice all conductors to the new location. Now, at the original panel board, you have anywhere between 70 and 80 connections…give or take a few. Dong so, in a workman like manor, isn’t really feasable or relaistic. Taking into consideration the age of the panel board, I see this type of application mostly on structures 40 -50 years old…not newer homes. The panel-board is usually stuffed to capacity to the point of conductors causing the dead-front cover to spring-off during removal.
Respectfully, I don’t feel as if I’m reading into the code to much, but more or less applying realtime applications of what we/I see in the field on my area. It is worth noting that the difference between our thoughts is addressed in reguards to workmanship and working space, and through the interpretations of the different UL listings for cabinets/enclosures. But, can a cabinet have both listings qualify for installation AFTER being retrofitted, so to speak, for a new application(ul 67 to ul 50)? Also, being that the origianl cabinet was designed for switches and over-current devices but has been altered by the removal of such components…would the manufacturer stand by it’s NEW intended purpose as a raceway? And if so, whould the requirements listed(installation and use) by the manufacturer need to be changed or updated for this application?
I understand your point, that the cabinet may have UL 50 rating as a stand alone use without the internal components. But, in real time use, is it a practical function and would the manufacturer agree with this type of use?

there, their, they’re…

Honestly my eyes glossed over a while ago. I think what was being said was robert thinks TNG is better than the original, Jim is a babylon groupie, and Paul think Star Wars kicks everyone’s ***.

Im going to keep rereading this stuff and researching so I can follow a bit better, thx for the info guys, its GREATLY appreciated and while some of the technical details may be lost on me now, I hope that will soon change and it keeps coming.

Now my eyes are glossed over. :slight_smile:

I don’t see why if the cabinet could be used as a panel enclosure you would think that removing the breakers would somehow mean that is was unsuitable as a junction box.