I am trying to understand what the NEC requirements are for new service
disconnects and electric service panels within existing individual apartment
units. I think I almost have it down, but I'm not quite sure about one or
This is a 3-unit apartment building and I just had the 3 main panels
replaced and added a 4th "common area" service panel. The design included
locating each of the 3 service panels within each of the 3 individual
apartment units, and the 4th service panel within the common utility/heater
room. In obtaining the permit, the town told the electrician that he had to
modify the plan a little by putting all 4 service disconnect switches on the
outside of the 3-unit dwelling. The reason was in case of a fire the fire
department could cut off the power from the outside of the building. That
left the 4 service panels being set up as subpanels -- one within each
individual apartment unit, and one within the common area utility/heater
room. Each of those 4 subpanels also has a main breaker that serves as a
service disconnect for that panel.
All of that is okay with me. The work was done and although I haven't had
the final inspection done yet, I assume the final inspection will go fine
and everything will pass as is.
Here's my real question:
I may want to do some additional remodeling and one option would be to move
one of the subpanels from within the individual apartment unit into the
common utility/heater room. That apartment tenant would have access to the
common utility/heater room, so he/she would still have access to the
subpanel for his/her individual apartment unit. Is that okay to do? In
other words, is it okay to move an individual apartment's subpanel out of
the apartment and into a common utility/heater room as long as that tenant
has access to his/her subpanel in the common utility/heater room?
If my description is confusing or needs clarification, let me know and I can
try to explain it better.