Sub panel rating-what does it mean?

The inspection yesterday was interesting. The combined cottages had 3 sub-panels, each sub-panel has a 100AMP rating and no main breaker at the panel. If the panel is rated for 100AMP’s, does that mean if you add up the installed breaker AMPS, 20A, 15A, 60A, 20A, 20A, 15A, the panel is overloaded?




It means that the connected load can not be more than 100 amps.

Go look at your service panel and see if the total of all the breakers installed do not equal more than the main

As long as the 100 amp feed wires have over current protection for 100 amps at the main service. It should be OK. Is there no means of diconnection in each cottage? The wires tapped under the feeders looks scarry!!!

there is no located main breaker, the whole system is a little scary, one panel has double tapped main lugs, 2 have knock-outs missing, wires not secure at panel and multiple double taps.

I have recommended a Lic. Elec. evaluate further.

Yes this is very bad.

Great call

The wire taped in the bottom of the panel is the neutral. It is commonly seen without tape over its entire length.

Hard to tell but is the neutral buss isolated from the ground buss?

NO, there is only one bus bar and both neutrals and grounds are mounted.

Scott , hate to start you over on this, but…
If these go straight from the meter they are no subpanels.
Do they feed directly from their own meters?

Is it possible that the 60 is the main breaker.?

If those are feeders at the 60 amp breakers , from what I can tell here they appear to be aluminum.

Is the panel rated for aluminum (CU)?

Remember the five throw rule also.

Did you see the meters?

Sometimes the meter outside has breakers.

Hi Robert,

There is only one meter on the outside. From what I can tell, the meter feeds inside the “first” house into one of those enclosed metal raceways (for lack of a better description and actaul name of system component) then from the raceway it branches off to the other two identical panels.

I guess I should have pulled off the raceway cover, but I really didn’t want to go there.

I did not look for the Aluminum rating, but will remember for next time because the feeders are Aluminum.

The meter does not have a breaker.

I apologize for not having the correct photo of the layout on the inside showing the raceway, I thought I got it when I took the photo.

Thanks for the questions.


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Scott if you have three Cottages or three distinct buildings, these are not Remote distrubution panels (sub panels).

Each Main panel should have its own ground rod.

If you looked around you would have or should have seen this.

Why only one meter?

Was it single family or rental with Landlord footing the bill?