I'm curious what size the drop between utility pole and top of the service
entrance is. I'm *not* taking any actions based on answers given.
Single family home built in 1957. There's a solid support / neutral with
green oxidation so I presume it's solid copper. I checked with a magnet to
see if it might be copper-coated steel but no magnetic attraction. It's
.15" thick. The two "hots" have smooth shiny black insulation with no
writing that I can see and they are .30" OD. I believe them to be solid as
well. Does the neutral have to be the same as the hots (no relying on the
ground to carry unbalanced)? I'm guessing 6AWG although I see a listing
for 7AWG but I've never heard of odd sizes in practice.
There are two main breakers: A double 30A feeding the dryer outlet
directly and a double 50A feeding the rest of the panel.
The size the utility company uses, has no bearing on the size the
electrician uses at your house. Chances are it's an old service with hard
drawn #6 copper, and the house has a 100 amp service. I've connected 2/0
copper to #6 from the utility company for a 200 amp service. They play by
Dam right!! I did a service in Bedford, NY, to a mid 19th century stone
Victorian house. When the house was electrified in the early 20th century,
the owners, who owned the whole area, didn't want to see electric poles and
lines along the street in front of the house, so they paid the utility
company to run the poles and wires through the woods behind the house. They
ran for about 1000 feet to another street, where they connected to a
transformer. They used #6 hard drawn copper, which was probably just fine
for quite a number of years. I don't know why they didn't install the
transformer closer to the house, but it may have been some regulation at the
time that it couldn't be on private property. Needless to say, these poor
(rich) folks couldn't even keep a computer from shutting down due to the
severity of the voltage drops. Ultimately we disconnected the service from
the old overhead and ran a new underground to the front of the house where
there is now your typical utility power network. I cut down the 3 sets of
#6, which were all bare wires on insulators, and brought it to a scrap yard.
I don't remember how much I got, but I do remember leaving the scrap yard
with a big smile.
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