Load Center Bus Bar

My Current Load Center is a GE 200 Amp 40 Space box. On the Left and Right side of the Circuit Breakers is a Neutral Bus Bar which also takes the Grounds. I am running out of room on the Bus Bar and was wondering if I could put the Neutral & Ground together in one slot on the bar? This would give me more space in the Neutral/Grounding Bus Bar.
Thanks.
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Um, maybe. What do the listing instructions on the Load Center say? That's right out of the horse's mouth.
Otherwise, is there room to install another grounding bar? That's pretty much always kosher.
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050208 1903 - Andy Hill posted:

Yes, I would go to your local Home Depot and get a couple of new grounding bars and install them in the panel, fastening them directly to the metal box inside; and then take a wire from the new ground bars to the neutral bars so that the neutral and ground is at the same potential in that box. Then remove all the grounds from your neutral bars and put them on the new ground bars.
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No. The concern is that is that if it pulls out you will lose both neutral and ground. By all means check to see if your box allows more than one wire. If it does, put two grounds from different circuits together.
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It is code to install two grounds under one screw, but not two neutrals, and you can always add a new bar

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The instructions Printed on the GE Box are all I have. I just dont understand why the Neutral/Grounding Bar would only allow 42 Wires but the Box can hold a Max of 40 Circuit Breakers. If they were planning on filling the Box then the Neutral/Grounding Bar would of had to allow up to 80 Wires.
Thanks Everyone

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For the same reason hot dogs come in packs of 8 and buns come in 12s, silly.
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To Append to my Posting
I have the ability to install an Equipment Grounding Kit in the Box but was wondering how it is installed. I understand it is mounted to the Load Center but how is it grounded?
Thanks

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check with the manufacture about the ground/neutral bars. Some manufactures are UL listed for 2 wires of the correct sizes to be under one screw. The information should be on the instruction on the cover. Just not in very plain wording. I know my Homeline SQD panel will accept 2-14's or 12's under the neutral/ground bus.
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Burhans wrote:

If the instructions in the panel allow more than one wire per terminal then you may combine that many Equipment Grounding Conductors under each screw. The US National Electric Code forbids terminating two or more grounded current carrying conductors; which most of us call the neutral; in the same terminal. This is to avoid the accidental disconnection of one circuits neutral while troubleshooting another circuit and the attendant risk of injury and equipment damage.
"408.21 Grounded Conductor Terminations. Each grounded conductor shall terminate within the panelboard in an individual terminal that is not also used for another conductor." Copyright 2002 the National Fire Protection Association.
The only suggestion that I would have is to obtain the GE add on buss bars that are used to terminate the EGCs in feeder supplied panels. There should be no need to bond the add on buss bars to the neutral buss because the mounting screws will provide adequate bonding if the same manufacturer's add on buss bars are installed. Putting one add on buss bar on each side of the panel will allow you to readily terminate all conductors on the same side of the panel that the conductors enter the cabinet. That will contribute to a neater installation and avoid the mingling of branch circuit conductors with service entry conductors. -- Tom H
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Presuming this is your main and/or only circuit breaker panel? That is; it is the same panel containing or immediately following your main circuit breaker/fuse for the whole service? My understanding is that neutrals are grounded only once at the main panel? Neutrals are not grounded in any sub-distribution panels? In separate distribution panels, or load centres, there are for example two additional in my house (one in the kitchen area, one in the storeroom-garage area), the grounds and the neutrals must be separate? Each panel has its grounding (and feed) conductor/s back to the main service panel. Or have I misread something? My personal feeling would be to keep grounds and neutrals on separate strips. TIA
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Thanks everyone for the information. I have decided to purchase the GE Grounding Kit specified by the box(since it is an older box it is very hard to find). Since the Live 200Amp Wire comes in from the bottom of the box and raps up to the 200Amp Breaker on the left and the ground wraps to the terminal on the right I can not install the Grounding Kit on either side. There is a spot on the bottom of the box but within the box where there are holes I could install the grounding bar. I am going to take the new circuit grounds I am installing and run them to the newly installed Grounding Bar. Thank you for all your help. I hope to have the new breakers & grounding bar installed later in the week.

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Obviously an accidental disconnection of a neutral leaves a hot with no good way back to ground, other than through a person unlucky enough to be touching it, if it is somehow shorted. A 3wire dryer circuit is particularly dangerous because then the whole frame is hot, and it is often used when wet. But wouldn't the normal consequence just be that a circuit no longer works? Except in odd circumstances, is really isn't all that dangerous, other than the dryer example. There is no real exposure to equipment damage is there? Or am I missing something?
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toller wrote:

Maybe it's because whatever is plugged into that circuit will appear to be off (and not working), and the unsuspecting handyman may encounter the energized hot wires when trying to fix the problem. Or something like that.
Bob
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Any manufacturers grounding blocks should fit, NEVER DOUBLE GROUND unless you want insurance cancellations after the fire. Home Depot has em for a couple bux.

good
often
works?
than
there?
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when wet. But wouldn't the normal consequence just be that a circuit no longer works?

dryer example. There is no real exposure to equipment damage is there? Or am I missing something?

What is meant by double grounding is not clear.
As to using any ground bar that fits I'm sorry but this is bad information. If a part is not laboratory listed or recognized as suitable for use in that manufacturers enclosure than that WILL jepordize your fire insurance coverage. -- Tom Horne
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toller wrote:

Many solid state controlled appliances can be damaged by having the hot and no neutral. The disconnected neutral itself will go high to 120 volts if there is any connected load on the circuit. Additionally the neutrals of two different circuits will expand and contract at different times which will tend to loosen the connection. -- Tom H
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There is an optional Eqiupment Ground which can be installed in the box. I will purchase this ground and install it as listed on the box.

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Did you hear the one about the load center that took a bus to the bar? It seems it was a very *short* trip! Get it? HAHAHHAH Oh golly I crack myself up sometimes.
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