Upgrade from 200A to 3 or 400A service


Is it possible to upgrade my electric panel from a 200 amp service to a 300 or 400 amp service. I want to finish my basement and add a new patio over the next several years and I want to add quite a few new circuits and I don't have the slots left in the current panel. I really don't want to just add a sub panel, I would like to have a second line into the house from the meter in for the second panel. Is this possible? I would hand over all the work to a professional, but I just want to know if what I want to do is possible.
Thanks,
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You can have as large a service, with as many panels as you please. I would however recommend having an electrician evaluate your particular needs

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Thanks, I thought it was possible, but I just wanted to make sure. I'd sleep better at night with having more power spread across a second service panel.

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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

So add a subpanel. I really don't understand your reluctance to do that.
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Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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In most residential applications, you'd be surprised at how little electricity you tend to use most of the time

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While you are sleeping, if you have a typical house, it is probably drawing 15 or 20A in that 200A panel. Have you ever taken an actual measurement of how much power you use? Just get a clamp on Amprobe and watch it during heavy use. The only really big users in most homes is electric heat and central AC
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A larger size service will not give you more circuits if NEC has a limit on the number of breakers in a box. You may find that you are required to have one service disconnect per service, then divided up into multiple panels, or simpler to just add a sub panel.

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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

If you have a 10,000+ square foot house with electric heat and A/C you might actually have a need for more than 200A service. Otherwise you just need more spaces and a sub panel is all you need.
400A switch gear is expensive so what is typically done is a split 400A service with two 200A panels. A single utility service drop and meter rated for 400A and two feeds out from the meter to two normal 200A panels.
Installing say a 32 space 125A sub panel will cost perhaps $1,000 while installing a second 200A panel, new meter socket and having the utility drop replaced will cost perhaps $5,000 (or more). I'd expect you can find better things to do with the $4,000+ that would be wasted with the 400A service.
Pete C.
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Why would installing a subpanel cost $1,000? Unless something is odd, it can't take more than a couple hours.
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Toller wrote:

That was a guestimate to include the cost of having an electrician do the work as the OP noted and presumably install the new circuits into the panel. If you were to DIY it it would be perhaps $300. The point was the large cost difference between the sub panel which is needed and the upgraded service which almost certainly is not needed.
Pete C.
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Did one years ago, 400A, 120/240V with backup generator. It was expensive and a big jump in price from the typical 200A service.
I've heard someone has a 120/208, 3-phase service to his house too.
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