Opinions on upgrading Electrical panel...

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(bud--) writes: | Dan Lanciani wrote:
| > Does something like an L14-20 outlet require AFCI protection (assuming in | > an area so requiring) since it has 120V available pole to neutral? | | As you likely know, AFCI protection is required for 15 and 20A 120V | branch circuits supplying "outlets" (receptacles, lighting, smoke | detectors, ...) in specified rooms in "dwellings". Generally receptacles | that are required to have GFCI protection are not required to have AFCI | protection. Older houses may have kitchen appliance, laundry and | unfinished basement circuits that do not stray into rooms where | protection is required. And maybe bathroom circuits. | | The protection would be for the branch circuit (which includes the | L14-20 receptacle).
The question is whether the branch circuit supplying the L14-20 (let's assume that's all it supplies) is considered a 120V branch circuit for this purpose. It's a 240V circuit, but it does have a neutral so 120V is available.
                Dan Lanciani                 ddl@danlan.*com
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Dan Lanciani wrote:

I was lazy and didn't look up the configuration - shoulda known the question looked too easy....
The receptacle, for others as lazy as I am, is 120/240V, 2 hots, neutral, ground.
My opinion is an inspector would not require AFCI protection. (If AFCI protection was required it would have to be a 2-pole AFCI breaker, because you can't have a common neutral otherwise.)
--
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(bud--) writes: | Dan Lanciani wrote:
snipped-for-privacy@isp.com (bud--) writes: | > | Dan Lanciani wrote: | > | > | > Does something like an L14-20 outlet require AFCI protection (assuming in | > | > an area so requiring) since it has 120V available pole to neutral? | > | | > | As you likely know, AFCI protection is required for 15 and 20A 120V | > | branch circuits supplying "outlets" (receptacles, lighting, smoke | > | detectors, ...) in specified rooms in "dwellings". Generally receptacles | > | that are required to have GFCI protection are not required to have AFCI | > | protection. Older houses may have kitchen appliance, laundry and | > | unfinished basement circuits that do not stray into rooms where | > | protection is required. And maybe bathroom circuits. | > | | > | The protection would be for the branch circuit (which includes the | > | L14-20 receptacle). | > | > The question is whether the branch circuit supplying the L14-20 (let's | > assume that's all it supplies) is considered a 120V branch circuit for | > this purpose. It's a 240V circuit, but it does have a neutral so 120V | > is available. | > | | I was lazy and didn't look up the configuration - shoulda known the | question looked too easy.... | | The receptacle, for others as lazy as I am, is 120/240V, 2 hots, | neutral, ground. | | My opinion is an inspector would not require AFCI protection. | (If AFCI protection was required it would have to be a 2-pole AFCI | breaker, because you can't have a common neutral otherwise.)
Which would be a problem since Cutler Hammer doesn't make a 2-pole combo AFCI (yet?)... I wouldn't want to get into a situation where there is no way to satisfy the code with existing equipment.
                Dan Lanciani                 ddl@danlan.*com
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Dan Lanciani wrote:

Ask the inspector if AFCI protection is required.
If there are 2 pole AFCIs (I don't know if there are) you could use a small subpanel for the AFCI.
A 2 pole AFCI is probably really expensive.
--
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The Henchman wrote:

Go for the 200-Amp service. If doing it yourself, a 200-Amp panel is mayber $20 more than the smaller 100-Amp panel.
In addition to what others have said, consider a whole-house surge protector in the panel. About $35-$50.
As for grounding, it wouldn't hurt, except maybe to your pocketbook, to pound an 8' copper rod into the earth directly below the new panel. (Hint: Sharpen the end first)
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