# Distance from outside breaker box to A/C Unit

• posted on June 16, 2007, 3:42 pm
Can anyone tell me the maximum line-of-site distance that a breaker box sited outside an A/C compressor can be from the A/C unit? I want to put a breaker box about 15' from the unit (line-of-site), but I'm not quite sure it is to code (Virginia).
Thanks.
H

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• posted on June 16, 2007, 4:07 pm
Nec requires three foot in front and I believe it's 30 inches wide area without obstruction.

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• posted on June 16, 2007, 4:18 pm
Is that minimum 3'? Is there a maximum?

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• posted on June 16, 2007, 4:47 pm
Yes, you need a minimum of 3' X30" working space. No maximum

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• posted on June 16, 2007, 4:50 pm
I think I'm misunderstanding your question. If you want to know the maximum distance an A/C disconnect can be from the condenser, that's something else. It must be "in sight from" which means in sight of and within 50 feet.

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• posted on June 16, 2007, 4:58 pm
That's what I need....Thanks.

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• posted on June 16, 2007, 5:02 pm

why not locate it at the compressor?

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• posted on June 20, 2007, 10:55 pm
The current box has about 12" in front of it. It was installed about 40 years ago before the code said that there needs to be 3' of cleared space in front of it.
If I replaced the box near the compressor, there would be too many bends in the wire to be to code. If I put it 15' away, there would be three bends between the breaker box and the a/c, and 3 bends between the breaker box and the electrical panel.
H

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• posted on June 20, 2007, 11:27 pm

There is no maximum bends for cable. Conduit would limit the number of bends, but this does not apply to romex.
If you do have conduit, you are allowed to put a box at the existing location. The requirement is between pull points, not the breaker box. This can be no more than 360 degrees.
Everything outside should be weatherproof.

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• posted on June 20, 2007, 11:35 pm
wrote:

Terry,
Thanks for the clarification. Since this is outside, there will be conduit, so the 360 degree rule will apply.

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• posted on June 22, 2007, 6:34 pm

Lots of people use Romex designed for outside, outside. For ACs. No need for conduit. In Virginia too, I'm sure.