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  #1   IP: 205.210.252.10
Old September 10th, 2002, 10:54 AM
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Default Remodel/ Sub-panel location and circuit sizes

Posted by: MarkC (old forum transfer)
03 Sep 2002 03:31 pm

This is long, but I tried to make it detailed as possible!

I am in the process of a remodel and want to install a 100 amp lug only Non-Service Rated Panel in the attic (or in the bedroom – not my wife’s first choice) that is fed by my new 200 amp service panel in the garage. I want to, among other things, get rid of the 30 year old 14 gauge AL wiring. I want to run 6/3 with ground from a 60 amp breaker on the main. I will isolate the ground from the neutral in the sub panel and connect the ground to the main’s grounding lug via the ground wire in the 6/3.

Here are the 6 circuits described

Circuit #1: Master bath - 3 GFCI plugs, 20 amp. (no lights over shower).
Circuit #2: Master bath lighting, exhaust fan, closet light – master closet bedroom light. 15 amp.
Circuit #3: Master bedroom 6 duplex receptacles. 20 amp
Circuit #4: Kid’s bathroom – 2 GFCI. 20 amp
Circuit #5: 2 kid’s bedrooms – 8 duplex receptacles, 20 amp
Circuit #6: 2 kids bedroom and closet lights, hall lights (2), kids bathroom lights, attic light, doorbell transformer, duplex in hall and duplex in master closet. 15 amp.

Am I missing or overlooking something here? Also there is a sub panel in the attic now that used to feed power to the old electric central heat unit before we converted to gas. However it is hard to get to (behind the new air handler). I want to put the new one located as you go up the attic access ladder where I built a deck for storage access. There is 6.5 feet of vertical clearance, but I will need to add a 2 X 4 or plywood to mount it on. Is an attic installation legal?

Thanks in advance!

MarkC
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Old September 10th, 2002, 10:56 AM
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Posted by: Wgoodrich
Posted: 03 Sep 2002 04:10 pm

If this is a storage attic and not a living area then you are not allowed per the NEC to install a panel in a place of storage. Also the panel is required clear approach 30" in front of the panel from ceiling to floor. There is also a requirment fo 30" of dedicated wide wall space reserved for that panel.

You total attic wiring can be wired as follows.

All receptacles in both bathrooms may be served by a single dedicated 20 amp bathroom receptacle circuit GFI protected.

All the receptacles and lights in the first bedroom and clothes closets and the lights in the bathroom serving that bedroom may be on one branch circuit either being 14 awg copper 15 amp branch circuit or one 12 awg 20 amp branch circuit. The same in the second bedroom can be done same way. All the receptacles and light fixtures in the second bedroom and the lights in the closets and second bathroom serving that second bedroom can be wired again on a 14 awg 15 amp branch circuit.

This would be a total of two 15 amp branch circuits and one 20 amp branch circuit serving your attice easily. I see no reason to install a sub panel at all in that second floor. I would just run three 12/2wGrnd romex cables on three single pole 20 amp branch circuits. Cost of installing a sub panel to serve three branch circuits is illogical to me, see no advantage to installing this sub panel you are suggesting.

As for if it is legal. If the panel in installed in one of the bedrooms, has 30" dedicated wall space with 30" dedicated clear approach ceiling to floor and fed by a 6 awg copper cable that has a black, red, white, bare conductor in that feeder, protected in the main service panel by a double pole 60 amp breaker, keeping the neutral bar in that nonservice rated panel [aka sub panel] separate from the casing of the panel and from the grounding bar of the panel then you would be legal.

You have said nothing about smoke detectors. The building code calls for a smoke detector in the hall and another smoke detector in each bedroom. These three smoke detectors are supposed to be 120 volt powered with battery back up built into each smoke detector. The smoke detector may be power from one of the receptacles other than bathroom receptacles. There is to be a black,red,white, and bare conductor in the cable connecting from the first smoke detector in a daisy chain wiring design from smoke detector to smoke detector. The red wire is a required intertie so that if one smoke detector goes off all smoke detectors go off. The main floor smoke detectors are supposed to be tied to the upstairs smoke detectors.

You stairs light is supposed to be switched both top and bottom of the stairs if there is more than 5 steps in those stairs.

Remember that there is a required clearance of 24" from back and side walls of a clothes closet and 12" clearance from the front of any shelving in a clothes closet if with an incandescent light fixture. Also that incandescent light fixture is required to be with a closed lens. Flourescent light fixtures are allowed in a clothes closet and are required a minimum of 18" from the back and side walls and 6" from the front of any shelving in that clothes closet.

Hope this helps

Wg
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Old September 10th, 2002, 10:58 AM
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posted by: guest
Posted: 03 Sep 2002 04:25 pm

Thanks for the quick response, Wg!

I guess I need to clarify...it is a one story structure with attic access via a pull down staircase. Typical set-up in Texas. It is not a living area; only for storage so I guess that is out. The old sub panel up there now was probably legal 30 years ago?? I was going to add the sub panel in that area of the house so I wouldn,t have to run a lot of circuits back to the garage service panel at the total opposite end of the house.

Based on what you said, I will just run 12/2 circuits from the main and do away with a sub. I was going to put each bathroom GFI plugs on their own circuits with the thinking that if one person in each bathroom was using a 1000 watt hair dryer or curling iron it might cause a trip?

I am planning to run 12/2 as opposed to 14/2 for all circuits.

Thanks.

MarkC
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Old September 10th, 2002, 11:13 AM
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posted by: Wgoodrich
Posted: 04 Sep 2002 01:23 am

I picked up that it was a disappearing stair way. That is why I said it the way I did.

The extra circuit on the bathroom would put a dedicated bathroom 20 amp branch circuit in each bathroom. As long as you don' t leave that bathroom with that circuit you can wire lights and receptacles and exhaust fans and all in that bathroom on that dedicated circuit. YOu can do the same with the dedicated 20 amp circuit in the other bathroom. Just don't leave that bathroom with that circuit if lighitng and receptacles are wired together in that bathroom.

The smoke detectors still are required in the vicinity of the bathrooms [hall area] and in each bedroom intertied 120 volt powered and with battery back up.

12 awg on all circuits is fine and a good idea.

Good Luck

Wg
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Old September 10th, 2002, 11:15 AM
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Posted by: sharpt
Posted: 05 Sep 2002 05:42 pm

I have a few questions also concerning non-service rated panels.

1. Can you use the EMT as ground back to the main panel? I was reading through the NEC2002 book, and it listed this as an equipment grounding option. Not sure under what cases.

2. I am planning on replacing my kitchen/garage non-service rated panel and rewire my gutted kitchen and garage/laundry. What amperage options would you recommend? I already have 6/3 with no ground, but w/EMT conduit, from the main panel, but based on some rough calculations I couldn't wire in an electric stove/oven (my wife really wants a smooth top range).

If I can't use the EMT as ground, then I might just rewire 4/3 w/ground, if necessary.

I appreciate any comments.

Thanks,
sharpt
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Old September 10th, 2002, 11:19 AM
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Posted by: Wgoodrich
Posted: 06 Sep 2002 07:24 pm

Sharpt, I noticed you hit a test post to see if you showed as having posted on the index page. We are having syncing problems with the forum and we are currently working on the problem. Hope to have it repaired in a couple of days. Thanks for your patience.

I have a couple of questions that I need answered before I can give you valid suggestions on your planned project.

The EMT, it may be used as your equipment grounding conductor in your feeder between main service panel and nonservice rated panel [aka sub panel]. There are a couple of rules that apply. If you have knockout rings left where your conduit enters each panel then you are not allowed to use these knockout rings as the grounding path. YOu will have to install a bonding bushing on the end of the EMT conduit screwed and secured to the EMT connector connecting through that knock out and bonding jumper from the bond bushing to the panel case or equipment grounding bar. This bond bushing and bonding jumper will carry the grounding path around the larger knockout rings if they are present. If there is no knockout rings left and your EMT connector tightens to the metal case of the panel whether nonservice rated panel of service rated panel then the bonding bushing is not required. The NEC does not allow the grounidng path to rely on the knockout rings of as a grounding path. Make sure all connectors and couplings are secure and tight.

Now if your EMT is large enough then you may be able to pull 100 amp rated wire 4 awg copper THHN in through the EMT in place of the 6 awg copper conductors to serve a 100 amp nonservice rated panel [aka subpanel].

How far away is the main panel to the subpanel or kitchen loads. Is the nonservice rated panel worth the effort and money spent and confusion which panel or sub panels you go to in order to reset a breaker? I inspect homes daily as large as 10,000 square feet without any lighting and appliance non service rated panels. Is this house unusually large, what advantage is this nonservice rated panel? Can you install separate circuits to these areas that would really give you better electrical design costing less money and labor than a nonservice rated panel?

Sorry I am not a big fan of nonservice rated panels in a house unless we have a congregated motor load area such as a shop or other heavy load specialty area. General lighting and appliances most commonly can be wired allowing more individual power supply to each appliance and general lighting areas with less cost and labor intensive investment.

Wg
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Old September 10th, 2002, 11:21 AM
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Posted by: sharpt2
06 Sep 2002 07:46 pm

Thanks for your response.

I already have an out of code (one bus bar, behind laundry) [subpanel] installed in the garage, with 3 6AWG THW wires from the main service panel in 3/4" EMT conduit. This [subpanel] services the 2 car garage+laundry right now (woodworking tools), but the kitchen is next to the garage and I was considering wiring the kitchen from this panel instead of from the main panel. I plan to move the [subpanel] to an adjacent wall with 30"x30" clearance.

I am on slab with no attic, so kitchen wires would have to be run outside the house in conduit or rip out all the drywall starting from where the main panel is located on the other side of the house, although small house 1200 ft^2. My kitchen has no grounding right now, 1955 wiring 100AMP service. (I just bought the house).

Since it is OK to use EMT as ground (if properly grounded) then I don't have to mess with the wire or conduit coming from the main service panel to the [subpanel]. Since it is 3/4" EMT if I needed a ground wire then I would have to resize the conduit, big mess. 3 THW 6AWG wires is max capacity.

So I will be close on the load with 60AMP capacity for my kitchen+gas laundry+2 car garage. I guess no smooth top electric range

I think [subpanels] are a good idea when you have no attic or crawlspace to pull wires. What would you suggest, to rip out the drywall, or run 5 branch circuits behind the baseboards?

Thanks for your help,
sharpt
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Old September 10th, 2002, 11:22 AM
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Posted by: Wgoodrich
Posted: 07 Sep 2002 10:45 am

We seem to have the same subject same poster on two forum subjects. Be sure to read my reply on the "wiring Home" forum subject also. Had a lot to say there.

We keep coming up with new info on this planned project and I am trying to adapt as you provide new info.

The sub panel you have as existing could probably serve as existing if the wiring is corrected concerning using the EMT as your grounding path and making sure you neutral bar is isolated from the grounding bar in the existing no service rated panel.

Next would be how to get three new 20 amp branch small appliance branch circuits to the kitchen area [2 is minimum but three would be in your best interest in my opinion] Then a minimum of an 8/3wGrnd range cable to that hopeful electric range. [again 6/3wGrnd Romex would be better for the range in your best interest to my belief]

You said you have no attic and no crawl space. If you have your panel on the outside wall then and if you have a soffitt then look and see if you have soffitt vents in your soffitt. With no attic you are required these soffitt vents in your soffitt to allow ventilation to avoid roof rot. If you have these soffitt vents then you could remove a soffitt vent close to the main service panel and reach through that vent through the wall into the stud space below the top plate and directly above the main service rated panels. You could fish all your branch circuits from that vent along your soffitt to the area of your kitchen and again remove a vent and fish your wires into the kitchen walls to wire your kitchen. Then replace the soffitt vents. Check and see you may have a chase in that soffitt the length of the house that you can install your Romex cables from the main service rated panel to the kitchen area.

Using the corrected existing sub panel to serve your garage and laundry and running the three 20 amp circuits to your kitchen and stove would give you as much as 160 amps worth of branch circuits serving your garage, laundry, kitchen areas. I know this is about 60 amps more than your panel is rated. This is allowed and if you get around to doing a demand load calculation for your dwelling you may find the 100 amp service to be too small needing to use the money your were going to spend on the new sub panel to upgrade your existing main service rated panel.

The following link will guide you in doing a dwelling demand load calculation to find the minimum main service size required by the NEC to serve your home. May be that you will want to research that calculation and if could change your whole way of planning your project putting money in more needed areas. Let us know how you come out in finding what your minimum service size is required to be per the demand load calc format at the following link. Curious, this may surprise you from what I am picturing in your home and what you plan to add to your home. At least then you can make an informed decision on your wiring plan.

http://www.homewiringandmore.com/hom...DmdCalc02.html

Hope this helps

Wg
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