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Old 11-26-2005, 07:40 AM  
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Default Additional Circuit Breaker Boxes

I plan to do some remodeling and I will be installing a door in a wall that contains about 10 wires connecting to my breaker box in the basement. My thought was to install another breaker box beside the doorway and connect the wires to that in order to take them out of the doorway, and connect the two boxes together. The new box would be in the garage and we are planning to make an apartment above. We have a 100 amp entrance. Our power connects to the house by way of a 300' power ditch.

Will my solution to the wires in the doorway be effective and efficient? Is there a better way? Can a new entrance and meter be installed with my existing power lines?

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Old 12-03-2005, 06:49 PM  
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I'm not sure I completely understand the question. If you want to install a door in a wall that contains electrical wires. The solution is to re-rout the wires. It sounds to me like you are dealing with a wall that contains branch circuits coming from your main panel. Electricians call these "home runs". If this is the case there's no simple solution. You could install 2 junction boxes (large enough to accomodate all the wires) and locate one on each side of the door. Label every cable in two places, cut the cables, run each end to one of the junction boxes and run new cable between the boxes. I would recommend a licensed electrician do the work. If you try it yourself make sure the power is off, be meticulous about labeling and have an electrician chech out your work.

What's a power ditch?

Good Luck.


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Old 12-03-2005, 11:19 PM  
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Any junction box has to be accessable.
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Old 12-04-2005, 10:41 AM  
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by adding a panel I assume you mean removing the 10 wires from the existing panel...feeding the new panel with one larger cable as a sub fed panel...and breakering the 10 cables in the new sub fed panel. So long as everything is marker clearly that seems an okay solution.

By power ditch I assume you mean a 300' undergound service entrance...
By new panel and meter I assume you mean a larger service size...

Upgrading the service to a larger size is a problem unless the underground is changed. (our local utility charges $50 per foot after the first 135 feet for new installations...I am not sure if upgrade effects the price). Utility companies typically install the wire needed and do not make allowances for upgrades. They run 100 amp wire for 100 amp services. With a 300' foot secondary (the drop to your house is a secondary) you may also already be in a voltage drop situation. (voltage and amperage are inversely proportionate. Voltage goes down...amperage goes up. The same device will use more amperage at 110 volts than it will at 120 volts...causing more "strain" on the wiring) Changing to a larger service will be problematic. Without knowing the age of the home/ size of the home/ etc etc advice is Distribution!!!! Alot of people get new larger services installed hoping to solve problems that could have been solved by better branch circut distibution.
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Old 12-09-2005, 05:18 AM  
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Hire a licensed electrician. A basic point to keep in mind is that you need 100A PER UNIT-- not 100A going to the house then getting split up to power an apartment, too. This is based on the idea that modern places use a lot of juice -- microwaves, TV/Stereo. dryers, etc -- and this is the minimum amount of power needed for normal household. To make it simpler, it's like having $100.00 to lend out, lend a twenty to somebody and nobody else can use it until it comes back -- the same applies to electricity, if an applince is using that twenty amps then nothing else can use it. Hire a licensed electrician.

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