service box expansion

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I'll be tackling the kitchen electric soon. The only place I use a lot of electricity is in the kitchen. The service box has a 100 amp main (never tripped) and is a TLM 612. Currently has the normal size breakers in them.
What I was thinking was two 20A lines for the kitchen counter, and a separate line for both the fridge and washer. Is that about right?
It looks to me that I have several options, I can put in the half size breakers. Run a subpanel just for the kitchen, or put in a larger service box. The stove is electric and I don't think they make half size 220 breakers, am I wrong?
If I put in a larger service box, I'll want to turn off the power. I'm thinking the power company is used to people pulling the meters, am I wrong? If so this makes replacing the service box a lot more expensive/inconvenient.
Jeff
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around here pulling the meter is a non issue with the power company, as long as you inform them immediately afterward.so they can reseal the meter. just tell them you had to replace a breaker and didnt want to get shocked
with the electric stove load a new main would be good.
you could install a 200 amp panel but swap out the 200 amp main for 100 amp so you dont have to replace the main service drop and meter can....... keep the 200 amp breaker for later use if needed
200 amp main panels usually offer more breaker slots.
half breakers will work but the main box will get packed with wires: ( and you will likely have to add some neutral buss bars. i dont like jammed boxes.
of course the best is a whole new main and service drop 200 amps:)
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remember to GFCI the kitchen outlets, the more outlets and breakers the better.,.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

When my house was built they installed a sub-panel for kitchen located inside a walk-in pantry. Very handy.
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Oh no there goes your resale. Well according to halinobrains anyway.
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jamesgangnc wrote:

Who cares about resale value? I built house the way I like/want. I live there not future buyer.
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well someday someone will sell it......
and having sold a home its a PIA, better to do any job really well than cut corners and have them all come back to haunt you at resale time...
your home is a place to live and no doubt the most expensive thing you will ever buy. might as well treat it right.
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wrote:

I don't know about US code but Canadian code requires an outlet on every counter surface larger than 12 inches, and one every 6 feet, minimum. Plus one for the fridge, dishwasher, microwave and any other dedicated fixed appliance. This would require more than 2 breakers. Also my house has a 100 amp service but because all circuits are very lightly loader, and the house is spread out, I have three branch breaker boxes to provide enough breakers.
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wrote:

U.S. Nec is similar in that it requires a minimum of 2-20 amp circuits for general use counter outlets. Other fixed appliances cannot be fed by these same 2 circuits, except for the refrigerator, however the OP is planning to run two more circuits for the fridge and washer. We also must install a receptacle at any counter space 12" or larger, but any counter space must be within 2 feet of a receptacle making our placement a little tighter at every 4 feet
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On 2/25/2011 10:03 AM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

OK. I'm looking at this: http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100156816/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId051&catalogId053
Siemens 200A 30 circuit. Are the breakers the same as my GE? I have some memory of there being different styles. This mentions Instr-Wire, which is unknown to me.
I was down at one of the builders surplus stores and they had a number of used breaker boxes just laying around, some with breakers in them. I don't mind buying used, but it's not so expensive new to be a big factor. I'm willing to pay for less hassle.

OK.
I'll leave the option open.
Jeff
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Jeff Thies wrote:

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100156816/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId051&catalogId053

Properly, you can only use the breakers that are listed on the label in the panel.
There are also some "classified" breakers that have been tested to work in other manufacturer's panels. I think, for example, Siemens makes breakers for SquareD.
If this is going to be inspected you may have problems using breakers other than that (it is an NEC violation).
I would not use 'previously owned' breakers becasue I don't know their history.
--
bud--


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Without knowing what circuits you already have installed in your 100 amp service panel no one here can realistically tell you whether or not you should buy a larger panel to facilitate installing more circuits...
Without knowing your ACTUAL load on each leg of your service you could experience big problems with an imbalanced load causing the main breaker to trip...
So right off the bat if you bought this panel you would be off looking for a 100 amp main breaker to swap out for the 200 amp one that it comes pre-equipped with... That breaker by itself is going to cost quite a bit... Plus you are looking at obtaining all new breakers which are compatible and approved for use with that shiny new panel for your existing circuits as well as the new ones you want to add...
Without knowing the layout of your house and what specific and discreet spaces exist, in general you will need a dedicated appliance 20amp circuit for the counter in the kitchen as well as dedicated 20amp circuits for outlets in bathrooms and laundry rooms...
I agree with bud--, I would not buy and install a "pre-owned" electrical panel, its just not worth the trouble which can happen...
Is there some reason why you are adverse to installing a small sub-panel to accommodate the few circuits you need to add?
Also a pic of your existing panel would be great...
~~ Evan
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Should just need inspected so THEY can put meter back on.
greg
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around here i have pulled a couple meters, put them back and let the power company know, they send someone out to reseal meter no inspection necessary.
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100 amp service is rather imited these days. I would consider upgrading.
One thing to be careful about is that the boxes are not just limited by service amps, they also have a total circuit limit. If you look at new boxes you will see this in the box speciifications. That means that even though you theoretically can double the breakers by using half sized ones you may still be exceeding the total circuit limit for the box. There is also a special load calculation that you need to do to decide how many breakers you can put off your 100 amp service.
And you are correct, you need to use regular sized breakers for 220. This is because those smaller "double" breakers share a single lug behind them. To get 220 the breaker has to connect to 2 lugs.
Presuming you have a 220 breaker there now you can use it to feed a new subpanel for the kitchen. Presuming you are going to sconnect the stove to the new subpanel you will need to install a larger run form the main panel to the subpanel. Probably #6.
I would forgo the two 20amp breakers for kitchen outlets if all you have is 100 amp service.
Upgrading to 200 amp service is more than just replacing the main panel. The electric company has to determine if the service lines going to your house need to be upgraded. They may be pretty reasonable about doing this as you will potentially be buying more electricity from them. If the power is overhead this is usually a simple task. If you have buried service that's another matter. If it was done in the not too distant past it may be capable of 200 amp service. If it' really old then it will likely need to be replaced. I beleiev your power company will take a look at the situation for you for little or no cost.
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jamesgangnc wrote:

Just for reference, the current NEC requirement (new construction) is 2 kitchen circuits (virtually all the receptacles in the kitchen, pantry, breakfast room, dining room, similar), 1 laundry circuit, and 1 bathroom circuit - minimum
A separate circuit for the refrigerator is nice, but not required and may not be necessary for you depending on what you use in your kitchen.

Around here I just cut the seal then call the utility. Some other utilities may not be so friendly. Ask in advance.
Replacing with a new 100A panel may not be a simple swap. The old service wires may not be long enough. That means shortening the conduit with the wires in it or fishing new wires into the 1/2 hot meter socket (very dangerous).
You do not want to work around hot service wires. The hazard is not just electrocution. If there is a short you can get 5,000 - 10,000A short circuit current, with minimal overcurrent protection from the utility. Screwdrivers can evaporate. It can totally ruin your day.
There is the question of pulling a permit, if applicable in your area. If you pull a permit, with a new panel, there may be required minimum circuits that are required by the "AHJ" (but not by the NEC). Pulling a permit is recommended. There are many practices that are unique to services.
If you add a subpanel, you can move some circuits from the existing service to get space to add breakers.

To enforce the limit on the number of 'circuits', panels have for many years limited where the half-sized breakers can be installed. Commonly available half sized breakers won't fit in other positions. The panel label should have information.
There are calculations for what size service you need if you add a load (like electric stove) to an existing house. You can install as may breakers in a panel as the panel is designed to allow (or add subpanels).

Upgrading to 200A also means replacing all the electrical (wire, conduit, meter can) back to where the utility connects.
--
bud--

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bud-- wrote:

there are sometimes limitations to putting in 1/2 height breakers. some boxes won't allow them. i had to undo this (work by a previously licensed electrician that the inspector didn't catch), add a new subpanel, and move circuits from the old to new subpanel to make some slots available for a new 240v circuit in my full 40 slot panel.
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wrote:

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RBM wrote:

I haven't done it, but I presume that whatever appliance ckts appear in the dining room have to originate on an AFCI breaker, and if those ckts appear on the kitchen countertop they have to be a GFCI receptacle or downstream from a GFCI receptacle.
================I suspect you saw - where you are extending a circuit that is not AFCI protected to add a receptacle where the NEC requires the new receptacle be AFCI, the 2011 NEC requires an AFCI receptacle at the start of the extension to protect downstream (or change the breaker to AFCI, or some other possibilities). If they could I suspect there would have been a requirement that the source breaker be AFCI, but the NEC applies to the new part of the wiring.
And for replacement receptacles on non-AFCI protected circuits where the NEC now requires AFCI protection, the replacement receptacle has to be AFCI starting in 2014 (some other possibilities).
As of when the 2011 code-change book was written there were no AFCI receptacles.
--
bud--

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wrote:

That makes sense to me. I haven't had the scenario to date. My thought was to just run separate circuits to any location that requires AFCI protection, and keep kitchens separate, especially when considering the wiring to the first outlet rule. I would also be a little concerned taping a GFCI off of an AFCI, although I have no reason to believe it would be problematic. I also have not yet seen an AFCI receptacle
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