I'm in the process of installing a new 200A electrical service to an existing
residence. I will be pulling three 3/0 Cu THHN cables through 2 inch rigid
conduit. The first run is from the service head to the meter-main and is a
straight vertical run of about 15 feet. I'm not too worried about that one. The
second run is from the meter-main to the load center. It comes out the side of
the meter-main into a 3/4 inch offset followed by a 45 degree el which turns
up, a straight run of about 3 feet on the 45, another 45 degree el back to the
horizontal, 8 feet of straight run, a 90 degree condulet (still in the
horizontal) and an 8 inch nipple into the back of the load center.
The question is, what is the best way to pull the cables? One at a time or all
three at once? Is there any special tricks I should know about? What about
getting the cable to go around the condulet? Any help would be appreciated?
The pipe size looks to be good for 5 conductors, so it should be a
fairly easy pull.
It sounds as if you are making 2 separate pulls. Make sure you
have pulling soap. The best method is to soap and push the wire.
The person pulling on the fish tape/rope needs to just keep a slow
steady pressure, the force should be coming from the pushing end.
Keep the whole world singing . . . .
DanG (remove the sevens)
As was earlier stated, pull them all at once. And if you don't
have a fish tape, you can "pull" a string in with a vacuum cleaner
and use the string to pull in a rope or something strong enough to
pull the wires.
<< I will be pulling three 3/0 Cu THHN cables through 2 inch rigid conduit. >>
When I put in a 200A service a couple of years ago, I used 2 1/2 " plastic
In our local codes, only 5 feet is permitted between the meter box and service
panel. My journeyman sub suggested the larger size, so I traded all the 2"
fittings and conduit I had for the 2 1/2" and I'm glad I did because even in
the short distance we had two 90 degree els plus the bend into the box and it
was one real hassle.
Some power companies (like ours) allow 2/0 copper for residential and that
would be easier with 2" conduit and lots of pulling lube.HTH
There are all kinds of tricks for pulling/terminating larger conductors.
Unfortunately, it's easier/better to show someone the tricks than to write
them down, a learn by doing/watching kinda thing. One approach is to install
the base of the weatherhead on the conduit, then install each conductor
separately. Pre-strip each conductor (sized to fit the lugs) before pushing
it in from the roof. Helps to give the very end of the (stripped) wire a
wrap of black tape before inserting it into the conduit, to keep it from
fraying/catching on a fitting. Once the wire enters the meter, the person
at the meter removes the black tape, then brings the conductor straight into
the lug and tightens the lug screw. Helps to start with the neutral (don't
forget to mark it). Repeat for each conductor. Don't force the wires if they
catch (usually at the fitting at the meter) Pull it back some and try
pushing again. Once the conductors are all in, pre-bend the conductors at
the weatherhead, then assemble the weatherhead. Leave at least 3 or 4 feet
hanging from the weatherhead.
You should pull/push _all_ of the conductors in at the same time in this
part of the run. Don't try to terminate at the same time like from the
weatherhead to the meter, though. Sometimes, on a short run, you can get
away with duct taping all of the conductors together, apply a little wire
lube to the head and push all of them through. If that doesn't work, you'll
have to fish in a 1/4" rope and connect all the wires to that and pull it
Once the wires are pulled from the panel to the LB, have a helper at the
panel and then feed the wires from the LB one at a time. Talk through the
8" nipple to the helper so that he/she is pulling while you are pushing
and/or taking pressure of the wire. It's _not_ as easy as it sounds. Try
not to cross the wires in the LB, if possible.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.