Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

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Jmaclicious
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Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:17 pm

Currently my 24 cct stablok pioneer panel doesn’t have enough space. Unfortunately it’s a 1950s home and the current panels top breaker is approx 80” as well as being on the other Side of the stair landing wall, if I had it swapped to a larger 40 or 48 cct panel is it necessary to pull a permit as the inspector will most likely make me install a mast kit through the roof (as right now it’s below the soffit) and also relocate the panel... in which case I might as well just do 200a service upgrade, which a lot of people are saying is overkill for a 1100 sqft bungalow or would that be “grand fathered” Not really sure how to go about this as I will be pulling a permit for my basement wiring. Also if I got a bigger panel and didn’t pull a permit but had a licensed electrician do the work would there be any consequence?


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Aaron
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Aaron » Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:22 pm

Jmaclicious wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:17 pm
Currently my 24 cct stablok pioneer panel doesn’t have enough space. Unfortunately it’s a 1950s home and the current panels top breaker is approx 80” as well as being on the other Side of the stair landing wall, if I had it swapped to a larger 40 or 48 cct panel is it necessary to pull a permit as the inspector will most likely make me install a mast kit through the roof (as right now it’s below the soffit) and also relocate the panel... in which case I might as well just do 200a service upgrade, which a lot of people are saying is overkill for a 1100 sqft bungalow or would that be “grand fathered” Not really sure how to go about this as I will be pulling a permit for my basement wiring. Also if I got a bigger panel and didn’t pull a permit but had a licensed electrician do the work would there be any consequence?
What you do is up to you... Have you explored what each circuit in the panel actually powers? You may be surprised to find some circuits may not power much. It always seems to happen this way in older homes. What's good is you can often consolidate circuits to make way for a new circuit in an otherwise crowded panel.

But you are using a Pioneer panel and Stablok breakers which gives me hives as an American, because down here the Federal Pacific brand of those are very dangerous and being replaced (the breakers don't trip and overheat and cause fires). I'm told the Canadian Pioneer ones are supposedly fine, though, for whatever reason. Must have been built better.

Any licensed electrician will (or absolutely should) pull a permit, that is standard.

Don't worry about 200A being overkill. It's the modern, standard service these days for all new installations and has been for a couple decades regardless of the size of the house. I recommend a panel with 40 full-size breaker slots that support up to 40 single pole circuits, and is constructed with copper bus bars.

Yes, you'll need a new masthead and new conduit, and possibly a larger meter box as well. That cost is all borne to the property owner--the only thing the hydro/utility supplies is the meter head. They also put a tamper-proof locking tag on your meter box.

If the new panel is in a different spot, then the old panel will likely be replaced with a large box where all your circuits can be spliced to extension lines going to your new panel.

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emtnut
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by emtnut » Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:11 am

If you upgrade your service (to 200A), then you would likely need to update the mast per current Hydro rules. Just replacing the panel, you wouldn't have to.

With just a replacement panel, many things are grandfathered, but 80" was never to code, so it would need to be moved. As for the panel not being close to where the conductors enter, that's a judgement call by the inspector. Unless it would be almost impossible, he would probably want it closer.
There are many ways around this though. Your electrician could install a disconnect, then you can have the panel just about anywhere (but not 80in high!).
There are licensed electricians, and there are licensed electrical contractors. A LEC would take out a permit. You can have him call the inspector beforehand, and you will know what needs to be done.
Not many panel changes done these days without a permit, mainly because of smart meters. Hydro knows right away that it's been pulled, and will likely send someone out.

As for 100 or 200 A , size of the house is almost negligible. It's what loads you are running.
Ie a small house with electric heat, or an electric car charger, would need a 200A.
A large house with gas appliances could easily have a 100A.
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Jmaclicious
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Sun Aug 19, 2018 4:52 pm

emtnut wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:11 am
If you upgrade your service (to 200A), then you would likely need to update the mast per current Hydro rules. Just replacing the panel, you wouldn't have to.

With just a replacement panel, many things are grandfathered, but 80" was never to code, so it would need to be moved. As for the panel not being close to where the conductors enter, that's a judgement call by the inspector. Unless it would be almost impossible, he would probably want it closer.
There are many ways around this though. Your electrician could install a disconnect, then you can have the panel just about anywhere (but not 80in high!).
There are licensed electricians, and there are licensed electrical contractors. A LEC would take out a permit. You can have him call the inspector beforehand, and you will know what needs to be done.
Not many panel changes done these days without a permit, mainly because of smart meters. Hydro knows right away that it's been pulled, and will likely send someone out.

As for 100 or 200 A , size of the house is almost negligible. It's what loads you are running.
Ie a small house with electric heat, or an electric car charger, would need a 200A.
A large house with gas appliances could easily have a 100A.

Thanks for the info! Maybe I’ll try and make do with the current panel I have now if possible. I did find out that one outlet in my kitchen is 14-2 wire on a 15a circuit on its own... this outlet is nearly useless and goes unused in the kitchen, would it be dumb to replace my 4 basement bedroom outlets that currently have 12-2 wire with 14-2 and connect the basement bedroom with this solo receptacle in the upstairs kitchen ? Or should I just get rid of the kitchen outlet in order to free up a slot in the panel?
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emtnut
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by emtnut » Sun Aug 19, 2018 9:53 pm

Jmaclicious wrote:
Sun Aug 19, 2018 4:52 pm
Thanks for the info! Maybe I’ll try and make do with the current panel I have now if possible. I did find out that one outlet in my kitchen is 14-2 wire on a 15a circuit on its own... this outlet is nearly useless and goes unused in the kitchen, would it be dumb to replace my 4 basement bedroom outlets that currently have 12-2 wire with 14-2 and connect the basement bedroom with this solo receptacle in the upstairs kitchen ? Or should I just get rid of the kitchen outlet in order to free up a slot in the panel?
You probably can't get rid of that receptacle in the kitchen. You need receptacles every 12' along every wall.

The basement receptacles on '12-2' ... are they fed from a 15 or 20 Amp breaker currently ?
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Mon Aug 20, 2018 4:32 am

emtnut wrote:
Sun Aug 19, 2018 9:53 pm
Jmaclicious wrote:
Sun Aug 19, 2018 4:52 pm
Thanks for the info! Maybe I’ll try and make do with the current panel I have now if possible. I did find out that one outlet in my kitchen is 14-2 wire on a 15a circuit on its own... this outlet is nearly useless and goes unused in the kitchen, would it be dumb to replace my 4 basement bedroom outlets that currently have 12-2 wire with 14-2 and connect the basement bedroom with this solo receptacle in the upstairs kitchen ? Or should I just get rid of the kitchen outlet in order to free up a slot in the panel?
You probably can't get rid of that receptacle in the kitchen. You need receptacles every 12' along every wall.

The basement receptacles on '12-2' ... are they fed from a 15 or 20 Amp breaker currently ?
Currently it’s just rough wired in and there’s no power wire going from the panel
To any of the outlets yet since if I keep this panel I’d need to run MC to the first outlet with a afci, so as of right now no breaker has been installed for basement bedroom

Jmaclicious
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:03 pm

Ok so I went through my panel again to see where I could make room:
24 cct panel as follows

#1 - Washer
#2&#3 - Dryer
#4 - One 15a kitchen outlet on 14-2 wire (the one under the counter as shown above) -- Seems like a wasted circuit for 1 rarely used awkward receptacle. hmm
#5 through #8 - Oven (can free up 2 slots here I see)
#9 - 20a dishwasher
#10 - 15A upstairs bathroom FAN & 1x Vanity Outlet
#11 - 15a Driveway Car Outlet
#12 - one 15a Storage Room Outlet (I will use this for more storage room outlets, but upgraded to 20a on 12-2 wire)
#13&14 - Garage/Gazebo outlets and lights.
#15 - Kitchen Fridge 15a 14-2 Wire
#16 - 3 Bedroom lights, 1 hallway light, 1 bathroom vanity light = Total 5 Lights, 6 Bedroom Outlets
#17 - 15a old switch with light, 1 outlet, and transformer for doorbell (I will use this for basement rec-room lights)
#18 - Basement Stair Light, Top of Stair light, 2x exterior lights, Dining room light, kitchen lights, hall-way light, 1 bedroom outlet = Total 12 Lights 6 Outlets. (Wow, no wonder my lights dim when my water cooler in my living room kicks on... Ill have to look into this one to see if i can change it at all.
#19 3 Kitchen Counter Outlets
#20 - Furnace
#21 - Sump Pump
#22 & 23 - A/C Unit on 15amp double breaker
#24 - Old basement rec-room lights (I can make use of this for the basement outlets)

Currently in my unfinished in progress basement...
I have 11x outlets in my rec-room wired with 12-2 (not connected to any breaker), one of these outlets will be for a tiny mini-fridge cooler.
4x outlets wired with 12-2 wire in the basement bedroom... (also not connected to any breaker)
1x outlet in the basement bathroom... (not connected to any breaker)

light placement/numbers I'm currently undecided on, but I am going to be going with the 9w slim LED lighting.


my goal is to make the best changes possible so I can get inspections done and begin with spray foam until I can rebuild my garage in the future and then have the new mast going from the garage underground to the house and either expand or upgrade to 200a down the road.
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Aaron
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Aaron » Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:31 pm

Based on the fact your oven takes four spaces, my thought is that the breakers alternate legs, or poles, of the incoming service at every odd-numbered breaker.

For example, circuits 1 and 2 are on pole one, 3 and 4 are on pole two, 5 and 6 are on pole one, 7 and 8 pole two, and so on up to 24. You can even see lines grouping an odd and even pairs of breaker slots on the label with the lines separating the pairs.

So a 240V appliance requires a double-pole breaker that straddles two groups, or two pairs of circuits. This is to ensure enough metallic contact with the backplane for the current draw of the appliance.

Now that breaker you have on 13/14 could be a full-size single-pole breaker. The rest of them that occupy one slot number are single-pole tandem breakers.

That's my hunch anyway. You could maybe put some tandems in thay 13/14 group.

Let's see what Wayne thinks.

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Tue Aug 21, 2018 5:14 am

Aaron wrote:
Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:31 pm
Based on the fact your oven takes four spaces, my thought is that the breakers alternate legs, or poles, of the incoming service at every odd-numbered breaker.

For example, circuits 1 and 2 are on pole one, 3 and 4 are on pole two, 5 and 6 are on pole one, 7 and 8 pole two, and so on up to 24. You can even see lines grouping an odd and even pairs of breaker slots on the label with the lines separating the pairs.

So a 240V appliance requires a double-pole breaker that straddles two groups, or two pairs of circuits. This is to ensure enough metallic contact with the backplane for the current draw of the appliance.

Now that breaker you have on 13/14 could be a full-size single-pole breaker. The rest of them that occupy one slot number are single-pole tandem breakers.

That's my hunch anyway. You could maybe put some tandems in thay 13/14 group.

Let's see what Wayne thinks.
For sure I would put the oven double pole on opposing phases 6&7 to free up 5 & 8, still unsure if I could make cct 4 with the one outlet into better use or not-perhaps I could tie this circuit into a few lights into the basement to split up lightning zones better?

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by emtnut » Wed Aug 22, 2018 9:26 am

You can run into problems if you tap off other circuits come inspection time. ie, the kitchen is supposed to have 2 separate dedicated circuits. If you tap off of one of them, inspector will probably fail you.

By putting the oven on a tandem, you get 2 spare circuits as you said, and 13-14 will give you another circuit.
You can add to most circuits (except dedicated ccts), but make sure you don't have more than 12 outlets per.

If you have room beside your panel, what about putting in a small sub-panel ? It will help for any AFCI circuits you need as well.

Also, you can install a blankface AFCI receptacle beside the panel (if there is room), that way you don't need to run AC all the way to the first recept.
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Aaron » Wed Aug 22, 2018 2:01 pm

The subpanel is totally a good idea.

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Thu Nov 15, 2018 11:29 am

Ok guys just got some quotes for my service
Upgrade and point of attachment locations and inspector approved two locations that I am debating on putting the new panel.. in your opinion which would be the best spot ? To the left of my washer i planned to have that all shelving for storage(if I put it there I’m limited to Storage space), however if I put it to the right of the dryer it would
Make less of a mess on the outside of the house as that’s where the current pipe
Comes down, however it may be more difficult for the electrician to clean it up with a nice trough box and run wiring cleanly ? Also if the dryer duct is there it may look too cluttered ? The electrician said it’s up to me and it won’t cost any difference between the two locations. In the end I plan to drywall these walls and leave the ceiling exposed and clean up the plumbing pipes that are temporarily installed. Appreciate the advice !
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Thu Nov 15, 2018 11:31 am

Oh and here’s another pic of the rest of room so you can get an idea as to how it is.
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Aaron » Thu Nov 15, 2018 1:33 pm

I take it you're doing a complete upgrade (removing the old panel and replacing it with a new panel, instead of installing a subpanel)? This is really the best long-term solution in my opinion.

If you can install it where the old one is, that might be best?

Otherwise it's up to you.

Before you drywall, I would run any extra circuits you may want to run to various areas of the house that could maybe use more dedicated power. It will be a lot harder to do that after everything is closed off with drywall...

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Thu Nov 15, 2018 3:19 pm

Aaron wrote:
Thu Nov 15, 2018 1:33 pm
I take it you're doing a complete upgrade (removing the old panel and replacing it with a new panel, instead of installing a subpanel)? This is really the best long-term solution in my opinion.

If you can install it where the old one is, that might be best?

Otherwise it's up to you.

Before you drywall, I would run any extra circuits you may want to run to various areas of the house that could maybe use more dedicated power. It will be a lot harder to do that after everything is closed off with drywall...

yeah the panel has to be moved because the current one on that wall is 80" to the breaker and the inspector wants it at 67-68, and I guess it means shorter work for the electrician too because then he can get the new panel mounted up and ready one day with a new ground plate on the outside, and the next day run all the new circuits when the powers cut. Everything will be open for a while for me to do any wiring, as I won't be drywalling anytime soon. :mrgreen:

Also, im trying to draw up my plan currently to pull an electrical permit so I can do my rough wiring myself for spray foam purposes. (i do have the rough wiring in the exterior walls done already, but not connected to power source but I need to draw up the lighting/smoke alarms to turn in my plan) before the inspector shows up to check out the new panel when its installed.

I need to wire the 2 smoke alarms in the basement to a lighting circuit.. I would like to put 9 LED recessed lights(that will be controlled by 2 switches for 3-way switch), as well as the stair landing light(which is also 3 way switch) and the 2 smoke alarms all on its own circuit. what would be the best way to do this? New to hard-wired smoke alarms as I never had one before, so I dont want to mess my plan up for the permit :D

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Aaron » Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:29 pm

A hard-wired smoke detector is easy to install, you just need a fixture box with an incoming cable that has constant power.

Hardwire smoke alarms come with a triple pigtail (red, black, white) with a connector on it. The pigtail just gets spliced to a constant source of power (your lighting circuit), and the connector just snaps into the back of the detector itself before you twist and lock it into the mounting ring screwed into the electrical box.

It's preferrable if some or all of your alarms are interlinked with the red wire so if one of them goes off, they all go off. You use 14/3 cable to do that, daisychaining one alarm to another. Otherwise you just leave the red tail not connected (It usually has a little soft cap that slips on and off the end).

You can get smoke detectors today (hard wired or not) with integrated batteries that last the usuable life of the smoke detector (usually 5-7 years). I recommend those instead of changing out 9V alkaline batteries all the time.

You can go fancy and high end and get Nest smoke alarms that link together over WiFi and talk. But those smoke detectors are very expensive and still need to be replaced every 5-7 years.

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Shannon » Fri Nov 16, 2018 3:54 pm

Make sure you have plywood mounted to the wall with a chunk of poly behind it and even insulation . This way when you finish the room you can seal to the ploy to finish your vapour barrier.
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Jmaclicious
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Fri Nov 16, 2018 7:04 pm

Shannon wrote:
Fri Nov 16, 2018 3:54 pm
Make sure you have plywood mounted to the wall with a chunk of poly behind it and even insulation . This way when you finish the room you can seal to the ploy to finish your vapour barrier.
thanks shannon, yeah i plan on doing 3/4 ply for backboard, but I will be doing 2lb wall-tite spray foam once the electrical is finished. :D

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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by emtnut » Fri Nov 16, 2018 8:15 pm

Hard to tell from the pic if you put the panel on the right side of the dryer. Would you have the 1M clearance (width) required after the old panel comes out ?
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Re: Current 100a 24cct vs 40-48 or 200a upgrade

Post by Jmaclicious » Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:41 am

emtnut wrote:
Fri Nov 16, 2018 8:15 pm
Hard to tell from the pic if you put the panel on the right side of the dryer. Would you have the 1M clearance (width) required after the old panel comes out ?
Its tight on that side for sure, but the inspector said it would be okay there, however I think im going to go with it on the left side of the washing machine/window just so its less cluttered.

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