Zinsco individual mains in apartment building

An apartment building I just inspected had Zinsco individual 60A main breakers for the units in the utility room. The main panels in the units were GE, only most of the unit mains were Zinsco.

Do individual breakers such as these have the same problems associated with larger Zinsco distribution panels, which, if my understanding is correct, had more to do with the panels themselves than the breakers, unlike FPE, for which the problems tend to be with breakers themselves?

The Zinsco commercial panels were certainly more robust than the residential grade Zinsco.
I have seen them with copper bussing serving these kind of breakers. But they look old (what year building) At least these are protecting the feeder and not the branch circuits.
Before becoming a HI, I changed 52 70 amp main zinsco breakers in an apartment building that was initiated by the owners insurance company. The replacement breakers are made by UBI and seem high quality. Very expensive compared to other brands. I would give some cautionary narrative to CYA.


I just inspected a 266 unit apartment complex built in 1971. Zinsco panel in each unit. Property owner wanted a thermal scan of 15 random panels to get an idea of what might be going on. Only one of the panels showed an anomaly at the breaker. I recommended that they have an electrician evaluate the panel.

I don’t know about your area, but here it would be a problem getting an insurance policy with just a 60A service, let alone having a Zinsco sub panel in the unit.

A belated thanks for the responses. I did include a cautionary narrative, and recommended servicing of all the distribution panels, as several breakers did not turn off manually among those in the 2 panels I was able to open (all were painted in place).

Even 30A service for individual units within an apartment building flies in Detroit. 60A is customary. So is over-painting panels to the point the covers cannot be easily removed, alas.

Sure, we have large apt. bldgs. here that have 30 amp sub panels, still have screw in fuses.
I hear you about the over painting of the panel fronts, a lot haven’t been opened in decades and cutting through the paint to open the panel takes way longer than inspecting the panel!