Power Supply to Subpanel

I have a sub panel that is powered by wires tapped directly into the main lugs of the main panel. My inspector pointed this out but an electrician is saying it’s ok. Does anyone have a code saying one way or the other. I found your site and it seems like there are some electricians on here.

Please post your pictures.

What was the distance from that bus tap to the breaker it terminated on in the subpanel? This can be legal, but there are distance and a few other limitations.

The typical violation of what you describe would be if those lugs were double tapped, which I might guess they were. Darned few lugs are rated for more than one large conductor in the sizes we’re likely dealing with in this scenario.

Yes, there are codes that address the issue(s). One with regards to the listing of the lugs - whether they’re rated for more than one conductor, and another referencing the requirement for a disconnect, and yet another for appropriate over-current protection for the conductors supplying the panel.

Do you have a picture?

I don’t have a picture right now. I’m not home to take a picture it is a push matic box? The house was built in the late 50’s early 60’s. The aluminum wires come in to the main lugs and there is braided copper wires attached there.

You mean the Electrician did not know what part of the code he was referring too that allowed this condition?

if I understand you correctly they tapped the main lugs before the main disconnect if so they cannot disconnect the sub panel with the main breaker in the main panel and this would be a violation. The Pushmatic lugs would not be rated for a double tap the buss would have to be tapped and lugs installed or a breaker installed in the body of the panel used to disconnect the sub panel.

Actually, you couldn’t be more wrong. This can be legal under certain conditions. The double tap, if one exists, is the real violation.