Questions about panel

Originally Posted By: gbell
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When the main panel is on the exterior with the main disconnect should the bus bars be connected in the auxillary panel with a metal connector. See photo. Also wires that are pigtailed should have the same size wire for the tail.


![](upload://vDDXTsiKQE7ZGwrHc9R9eNujlBn.jpeg)


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Greg Bell
Bell Inspection Service

Originally Posted By: dvalley
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Greg,


The metal connector you are referring to is the bonding strap. The answer to your question is NO.

If the SE disconnect is outside, then the inside sub panel should not have the strap that bonds the neutrals to the grounds. The neutrals should be floating and the grounds should be bonded to the panel (separated).


--
David Valley
MAB Member

Massachusetts Certified Home Inspections
http://www.masscertified.com

"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go."

Originally Posted By: gbell
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Thanks David


That is what I thought just wanted to make sure. The electrician was telling me that I was wrong. Now all I need is for Joe T to give me a code reference for when he calls back.


--
Greg Bell
Bell Inspection Service

Originally Posted By: dvalley
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Greg,


Here's a similar thread...
![](upload://me4MtRe3nGBGET8vgZY42XGj9kl.gif)


--
David Valley
MAB Member

Massachusetts Certified Home Inspections
http://www.masscertified.com

"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go."

Originally Posted By: gbell
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Another question


The ac condenser was rated for a 40 amp disconnect. It had a 60 amp pull out "which the electrician called a switch". I called it out as being oversized. The Sparky told me that it didn't matter what the rating was on the disconnect as long as the breaker in the panel was no more than 40 amp.

We also had a disagreement about the panel on the outside being the SE and the panel in the garage being an auxiliary.

He asked me if I was going to rewrite my report since most items I called out were not correct. I told him that my report stays as it was written. That he is the expert if he wants to put in writing that my concerns were wrong then that would be ok with me. That way if something happens down the road the new owner will be contacting you and not me.


--
Greg Bell
Bell Inspection Service

Originally Posted By: Greg Fretwell
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The electrician is right about the disconnect. If the branch circuit O/C device is 40a the compressor is protected. The pullout is just a switch.


Originally Posted By: gbell
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Thank you for the clarification. I always like to learn the correct way to do things.



Greg Bell


Bell Inspection Service

Originally Posted By: jmyers
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Greg,


When you are thinking about those pullouts that they use for the A/C units, think about it in terms that they can be used if the rating on the unit is lower than the rating on the pullout. Or just like a panel, they can use a main breaker lower than the rating on the panel, just not over the rating on the panel.


--
Joe Myers
A & N Inspections, Inc.
http://anii.biz

Originally Posted By: Greg Fretwell
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The pullouts I have seen don’t provide any overcurrent protection at all, they are just rated for load amps.


Originally Posted By: wdecker
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Think of it this way. If you wired a 15 amp, 20 amp and 30 amp breaker, all on the same curcuit (in line), the curcuit would be down as soom as 15 amps were exceeded. The lowest rated breaker (or fuse) will be the determining factor.


I have seen sub panels, that had 60 amp breakers, that were connected to the main panel wth a 20 amp breaker. So the sub panel never really gets more tnan 20 amps, so the 60 amp breaker in the sub panel is superfilous. It will never get tripped (baring a very specific bolt of lightning).


--
Will Decker
Decker Home Services
Skokie, IL 60076
wjd@DeckerHomeServices.com

Originally Posted By: shuggins
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Greg,


I have a question about the pigtail, where I'm from you can not use the panel as a junction box. We should never see wire nuts in the breaker panel. Is this ok in your area?

Thanks, Spencer


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Spencer Huggins
H & H Inspection Services, LLC
Piedmont, Oklahoma
spencer@hhinspections.com
http//www.hhinspections.com

Oklahoma NACHI Chapter Vice President
shuggins@ok.nachi.org

Originally Posted By: Joey D’Adamo
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The junction box thing has come up before, and the concensus is that splicing in a panel, for the purpose of connecting to something within the panel, does not constitute using it as a junction box.


Originally Posted By: wdecker
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In Illinois, this is true. One should never pigtail in the main service panel (with the exception of if you run more conductors to the box than you will use, the unused ones should be capped and labeled as spare.



Will Decker


Decker Home Services


Skokie, IL 60076


wjd@DeckerHomeServices.com

Originally Posted By: shuggins
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William,


Thanks, I was just making sure we are on the same page.

Spencer


--
Spencer Huggins
H & H Inspection Services, LLC
Piedmont, Oklahoma
spencer@hhinspections.com
http//www.hhinspections.com

Oklahoma NACHI Chapter Vice President
shuggins@ok.nachi.org

Originally Posted By: Greg Fretwell
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Spencer, you have to be careful taking things out of context in the NEC.


You have to read the whole article. If I was to take the “junction box” rule out of context completly I would also say you couldn’t splice the neutral in a box containing a snap switch!


"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>


We know that is not true so we must read on

"...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."

That leaves a lot of wiggle room, to much for Joe T, who wants to change it. Realistically you can splice a conductor in a panelboard enclosure and it takes an inspector who is making up his own rules to say you can't.

The intent is that the conductors in an enclosure only serve the devices inside but it doesn't even hint that you can't splice a conductor serving one of those devices.
Where the issue comes up is when you are routing a feeder or service conductor to another cabinet through this one. It is still legal as long as you have sufficient space. In fact the IAEI just had that question in the magazine a month or so ago.