Service disconnecting means requirements, Illinois electrical code?

The seller of a house I inspected this week called, with my clients permission, to inform me the city inspector told them they had to Replace the service panel because it did not have a Single breaker/disconnect to shut-off all electricity.

The inspector, in writing, said that according to Illinois electrical code the electrical service in a home requires the system to have One breaker/disconnect to shut-off all power in the home.

First, I’m not aware of any State of Illinois electrical code. Second the code this city goes by is the 2011 NEC, as posted on their website.

So is anyone aware of any “updated” code requirements of service disconnecting means at a single family dwelling that limit it to no more than One means of disconnect?

Or is no more than six disconnects for each service still the rule?

By the way the power at this 100 amp FP panel could be shut-off with four throws.

Six still in effect

Thanks Russ. That’s what I was 99.9% sure of. Just wanted to throw this out here, especially when the AHJ said it was a State code and IL doesn’t have an electrical code, per say.

I have a feeling he wanted them to replace the FP Stab-Lok, which I found no issues with, except for age.

There is no state code. Every township uses the NEC and whatever revisions they’ve added. It’s a local thing.


Usually local inspectors don’t require a new disconnecting means at the meter until there’s a service change or new construction.


Someone needs to educate the code official on the 6 throw rule.

Let me guess. It was a split bus panel and he didn’t understand it.

This home inspector has a good explanation here:

I’ve had a similar issue that turned out to be “confusion” on the part of the client, rather than the AHJ.

My guess;

The city inspector informed the client that a service-disconnect is required - which is true by any model code standards.

The service disconnect “shall consist of not more than six switches or sets of circuit breakers…”

Six switches or breakers are the equivalent of a *“service-disconnect.” *The layman will not necessarily understand this and will often misinterpret the requirement believing that a “service disconnect” must be a single switch.

The “problem” with that site is that the split-bus panels that are shown are improper.

The first split-bus panel requires switching 8 breakers (or tied sets of breakers) and the second requires 10. Look at the blue numbers - “4” and “5” are three switches each.

Yes, split bus. Apparently he didn’t take the time to read, or understand, the label inside the panel door, that illustrates the 240 mains and the “main for lights”. With this panel the second breaker from top is the main for lights.

This was the occupancy permit inspector, not the electrical inspector, so I’m sure he didn’t remove panel cover, where it was obvious.

Written on the inspection form mailed to the owner it said; electrical panel had to be replaced because it did not have a Main breaker. The Illinois electrical code requires a breaker to disconnect all electricity in the home.

Great answer Jeff. As if Illinois would have the means or the leadership to produce a State electrical code. :slight_smile:

Under the strong skilled mindset of the powerful leader we have in Springfield named Governor Quinn we are sure to have the proper codes in place very soon with a new fee to match.

That’s sure to happen either way. :slight_smile:

Don’t worry Bob you’re governed by Chicago bureaucrats, not the State, like the rest of us. :stuck_out_tongue: