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Old 10-05-2019, 12:53 PM   #1
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Default 2009 Canada Electrical Code

Can anyone confirm that this regulation for Solar PV - Overcurrent Protection is in the 2009 Canadian Electrical Code book:

"Where overcurrent protection is required by Subrule (1) for a photovoltaic source circuit, each photovoltaic source circuit shall be protected by an individual overcurrent device rated or set at not more than the allowable ampacity of the conductors of the photovoltaic source circuit or the maximum overcurrent protection indicated on the panel nameplates, whichever is less."

Thanks for your input.
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Old 10-05-2019, 12:55 PM   #2
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Why 2009 CEC?

Welcome to the forum.

Please fill out your profile.

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Old 10-05-2019, 01:12 PM   #3
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Thanks for the quick reply.

I'm concerned with 2009 because the array in question was installed in 2010 so this would be the applicable code at time of construction.

The specific issue I'm having is that the way the system is set up has 3 panels strung together with 4 strings coming together in a combiner box with a breaker for each combiner. The Electrician I'm working with is saying that each string needs a separate breaker which would a pretty costly change.

I'm just looking for confirmation on what the standard was when it was built to see if there's an opportunity to have the current design grandfathered in.

Appreciate any input you might have.
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Old 10-05-2019, 01:37 PM   #4
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I don’t know anything about the CEC, so don’t be mad at me for replying. The way I remember ours is that two strings combined don’t need separate fuses. It has to do with a short and the stings being able to handle the total current. Once you add the third string, you need to add protection for the separate strings because they can’t handle the back feed? Something with one string shorted, it only sees the current of a single string? Series/parallel kinda stuff.

That was always the case for the NEC. Whether they now require protection for two strings IDK. But your set up always had four strings tied together. In your set up, to me, it always required protection for each string.
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Old 10-05-2019, 01:47 PM   #5
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I don't have a 2009 CEC so I cannot help with this.

But, if it passed inspection, why bother?

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Old 10-05-2019, 01:50 PM   #6
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Thanks for the reply Hertz, I got similar feedback from another Electrician that I used to work for.
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Old 10-05-2019, 03:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBerry View Post
Can anyone confirm that this regulation for Solar PV - Overcurrent Protection is in the 2009 Canadian Electrical Code book:

"Where overcurrent protection is required by Subrule (1) for a photovoltaic source circuit, each photovoltaic source circuit shall be protected by an individual overcurrent device rated or set at not more than the allowable ampacity of the conductors of the photovoltaic source circuit or the maximum overcurrent protection indicated on the panel nameplates, whichever is less."

Thanks for your input.
Depending on which province your in, new code doesn&#226;€&#x2122;&#xfe0f;t usually get adopted until at least a year after it comes out, sometimes longer.

Also, 2009 CEC does not have a section 64 for renewable energy systems, there was only a small section on solar photovoltaic systems, section 50. This is the only code on overcurrent in it.
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2009 Canada Electrical Code-a3021711-b768-4fbb-bc7b-123a712dca31_1570305626027.jpg  
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Old 10-06-2019, 12:43 PM   #8
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Thank you so much for the support!
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Old 10-06-2019, 12:48 PM   #9
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Sorry, just a bit of confusion. Is the image you posted from the 2009 or 2018 Ontario Code?
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Old 10-06-2019, 03:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
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sorry, just a bit of confusion. Is the image you posted from the 2009 or 2018 ontario code?
2009 CEC section 50
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Old 10-08-2019, 01:25 PM   #11
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Hi Incogito,

Is there any chance you could send another photo of that page from CEC section 50? A full page version perhaps it shows the year on the top of the page?
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Old 10-08-2019, 07:13 PM   #12
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To me 50-010 (1) says you need overcurrent protection after two strings. That’s what I get when I read between the lines anyway.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:18 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBerry View Post
Hi Incogito,

Is there any chance you could send another photo of that page from CEC section 50? A full page version perhaps it shows the year on the top of the page?
There is no date on the page... at least on the Ontario code that I have.

Cheers
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:45 AM   #14
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Can confirm Navyguy, but here's the full page regardless.

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Old 04-01-2020, 12:34 PM   #15
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Typically you are good without overcurrent protection when combining up to 3 strings. You're probably running #10 RPVU which is good to 35A,
Module Short circuit current is 9-10amps, 10amps x 3-strings = 30A

But for 4 strings you'll need overcurrent on each string.
If you only have strings of 3 panels you are likely under 150Vdc and you can throw 4 Midnite MNEPV breakers in a MNPV6 enclosure. about $250CAD in material
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