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Old 02-14-2017, 09:17 PM   #1
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Default 200A Service Upgrade Panel Suggestions

New 200A single phase service, Adding 125 Amp sub panel for pool equipment, future solar, house is currently gas client wants to move current appliances running off gas to electric. Home is about 1500 square feet and will eventually have a 2nd floor built. To be honest this will be my first service change and i'm just looking for a little guidance. Job is permitted and SDGE is scheduled for a disconnect/reconnect in the next few weeks. So far I've shopped home depot and found that they are always stocked with the 20 space 42 ckt panels. Definitely looking for more spaces for expansion. Also notice that there are Solar Read panels. Any SoCal electricians have any recommendations on preferred panel to use. Can I cut out stucco and recess a surface mount panel or will I need to find a flush mount with kit. Does it matter? Just want to avoid any corrections by inspector. Thanks!
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Old 02-14-2017, 10:35 PM   #2
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cant help with SoCal, but would like know how you get 42 crts out of a 20 space panel.
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Old 02-14-2017, 11:58 PM   #3
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twin single pole breakers
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Old 02-15-2017, 12:33 AM   #4
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twin single pole breakers
Would give you 40......
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Old 02-15-2017, 12:50 AM   #5
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Have you done a load calc on the projected load?

Not in SDGE territory either.... But.... I'm guessing you are gonna have a hard time finding a 200A main that will allow a 125A breaker, check the specs, most of those 200A all in one units will only allow a 100A maximum off of them, you may have to go to the 320A or 400A unit.

Also, 20/40 sucks... especially if you have any ArcFaults going in that panel.
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Old 02-15-2017, 01:03 AM   #6
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Not for nothing but 125amp panel for pool equipment is overly large. Filter pump, air pump, lights, chlorinating pump, light in pump shed, and exterior receptacle would be far less than 60amps for a commercial olympic size pool.


Secondly in Cali with the electric problems they have going from natural gas to all electric seems counterproductive.
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Old 02-15-2017, 01:09 AM   #7
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Secondly in Cali with the electric problems they have going from natural gas to all electric seems counterproductive.
There are quite a few HO's going to large solar arrays and betting on the Tesla battery walls... The amount of time these wealthy people are at home and using that electrical...... They can go ahead and have the 10,000 sq. ft. homes on a 60A service!
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Old 02-15-2017, 01:15 AM   #8
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There are quite a few HO's going to large solar arrays and betting on the Tesla battery walls... The amount of time these wealthy people are at home and using that electrical...... They can go ahead and have the 10,000 sq. ft. homes on a 60A service!

Thanks for the heads up.


I'm strictly an east coast guy where people actually live in their homes!
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Old 02-17-2017, 12:14 AM   #9
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Thanks for the heads up.


I'm strictly an east coast guy where people actually live in their homes!
On the west coast the homes cost so much and you drive so far that you never really live in them.

My hotel bills a year would rival most employees rents.. all because I am too damn tired to actually drive the miles back to my home.
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Old 02-17-2017, 12:21 AM   #10
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On the west coast the homes cost so much and you drive so far that you never really live in them.

My hotel bills a year would rival most employees rents.. all because I am too damn tired to actually drive the miles back to my home.
That's just crazy!
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:21 AM   #11
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Siemens makes a 40 /80 or a 50/60. Don't know if they make it in a meter main though.
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:33 PM   #12
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Use twins as a last resort. Put in panels that have enough full size spaces. As much as we'd like AFCI disappear, I don't think that'll happen. If you are doing this work don't make it harder to come back. I don't like 30 space panels unless the property is small. I prefer a 40 or 42 for a 200amp panel.
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Old 02-17-2017, 10:12 PM   #13
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Would give you 40......
The tandem QO breakers here is 25.00 15/15 15/20
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Old 02-17-2017, 11:26 PM   #14
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Thanks for all the responses. SDGE requires a main service disconnect on the exterior of the home. All the 40 space meter combos I looked at are more than 20 inches wide. Kind of a pain to find one that has a smaller profile. So client wanted to go with a 200 amp indoor panel instead. Ended up finding an Eaton meter with a main service disconnect from Home Depot Model # CMBEB200BTS. Instead of going with main lug indoor panel went with the Homeline 200 Amp 40-Space 80-Circuit Indoor Main Breaker Plug-On Neutral Load Center with Cover - Value Pack (yes 200 amp main Breaker) that will be placed inside the garage. I like the plug on neutral option in this panel. Keeps the panel clean when it comes to installing arc fault breakers and terminating wires. This will give me the space needed for future expansion and conversion from gas to electric. On another note I just have to make sure the grounding electrode conductor is attached to the grounded neutral conductor at the service disconnect not at the distribution panel.
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Old 02-18-2017, 02:58 AM   #15
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Thanks for all the responses. SDGE requires a main service disconnect on the exterior of the home. All the 40 space meter combos I looked at are more than 20 inches wide. Kind of a pain to find one that has a smaller profile. So client wanted to go with a 200 amp indoor panel instead. Ended up finding an Eaton meter with a main service disconnect from Home Depot Model # CMBEB200BTS. Instead of going with main lug indoor panel went with the Homeline 200 Amp 40-Space 80-Circuit Indoor Main Breaker Plug-On Neutral Load Center with Cover - Value Pack (yes 200 amp main Breaker) that will be placed inside the garage. I like the plug on neutral option in this panel. Keeps the panel clean when it comes to installing arc fault breakers and terminating wires. This will give me the space needed for future expansion and conversion from gas to electric. On another note I just have to make sure the grounding electrode conductor is attached to the grounded neutral conductor at the service disconnect not at the distribution panel.
Make sure that Easton meter is approved by SDGE.
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Old 02-18-2017, 06:25 AM   #16
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One of the craziest things electricians/handymen do is take a brand new install or gutted remodel, and put in a small panel packed with piggyback breakers. I don't get it.
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Old 02-18-2017, 06:32 AM   #17
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One of the craziest things electricians/handymen do is take a brand new install or gutted remodel, and put in a small panel packed with piggyback breakers. I don't get it.
There have been situations in which I needed to fit a 200A panel into a tight space, so after talking to the customer about it and getting their approval I put 30 circuits into a 20/40 panel.

But other than that, I can't see any reason to ever put tandems into a new panel. IMO, a new panel should have at least 10 open spaces. If you have too many circuits for one panel, a second should be installed.
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Old 02-18-2017, 12:11 PM   #18
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There have been situations in which I needed to fit a 200A panel into a tight space, so after talking to the customer about it and getting their approval I put 30 circuits into a 20/40 panel.

But other than that, I can't see any reason to ever put tandems into a new panel. IMO, a new panel should have at least 10 open spaces. If you have too many circuits for one panel, a second should be installed.
I disagree, your wrong.

I like to count up the number of circuits, then subtract 5. I will then just wire nut all of the together and put them all under a 1P30, it rarely trips, but if it does I'll just go up to a 40.




Hahahahahah.....

The thing that sucks with the Cali installs is that a ton of them are flush mounted, so the panels have to fit into a stud bay. That limits the number of circuits we can do in a change out.

They are gonna either have to come up with a better solution on the product end, or we will have to start installing panels adjacent or behind the disconnect, on the interior of the home (If there is space to do so).
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Old 02-18-2017, 12:49 PM   #19
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The thing that sucks with the Cali installs is that a ton of them are flush mounted, so the panels have to fit into a stud bay.
But the stud bay is 8ft tall!
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Old 02-18-2017, 12:57 PM   #20
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But the stud bay is 8ft tall!
LOL... That would be something to see on the side of a house!

They need to make them wider though, with the AFCI breakers, those things take up the whole breaker bay, next to impossible to access the neutral bars.
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