Does she need a bigger breaker box?

A neighbor asked me about upgrading her breaker box.
I used to know what it is. However now, to see the value on my main breaker would require climbing on the dryer and using a mirror but I do know that the box has 4 duplex breakers (for the oven, water heater, AC, and clothes dryer), 12 15-amp breakers and it has 6 empty slots before I used one. One breaker is a GFI.
Does that imply how much amperage the house is wired for?
They were built in 1979-80. 3 floors including basement, 3 bedrooms.
It seems to me there is nothing a normal person could want to add that would require a bigger box. Maybe an electric chair would need more.
??
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On 01/20/2018 01:45 PM, micky wrote:

1) The box needs to be located where it is easily accessible. The bottom of the box typically 4' off the ground.
2) The word is "current" not "amperage."
If the water heater, clothes dryer and oven are all electric, I'd say 200 amp service would be in order.
If those appliances are gas, she may be able to get by fine with 100 amp service, depending on the size of the A/C unit.
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On Saturday, January 20, 2018 at 2:59:19 PM UTC-5, philo wrote:

Yeah, I don't understand having to climb on a dryer and use a mirror to get to breakers.
And the first question would be why does she think she needs an upgrade? Unless the main is being tripped what's the problem?
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I have 100. No way to use ac and kuerig same time. I turn off both before using 1100 watt mc.
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wrote:

I never popped my 100 amp fuses with the wife making dinner and running the drier at the same time -Oven on, stovetop on, coffee-maker or toaster - even with the AC running.
The only thing gas in the house is water heater and furnace.
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When an American (I'm British) says they have a 100A supply, what does that mean? Can you draw 100A at 220V or at 110V? In the UK we only have a single 220V supply.
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On 01/21/2018 05:12 PM, James Wilkinson Sword wrote:
[snip]

100A at 220V (22KW). With the center tap, that could be 2 times 100A at 110V, NOT 200A anywhere.
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All UK supplies I've seen are 100A at 230V. Well the main fuse is. My meter is only rated at 80 amps!
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I love the way you call a boiler a furnace. Slight exaggeration isn't it? In the UK a furnace would be a huge commercial installation for smelting metal.
Same goes for "truck" - I gather you say truck for a 4x4 / SUV / etc. In the UK a truck is 50 tonnes and carts cargo around. You need an HGV license for it.
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In alt.home.repair, on Sun, 21 Jan 2018 23:20:52 -0000, "James Wilkinson

They are two things in the US (and elsewhere, I'm sure.) A boiler has to have something to boil, water for steam heat. Possibly water for hot water heat, but I don't know for sure.
A furnace that just heats air is not a boiler.

We have those too. We also have smelt that you eat.

I don't think people call an SUV a truck. But they were built on truck frames, whatever that was, to get around iirc the gas mileage requirement that was applied to cars. So for regulation purposes the federal government ranks them with trucks, but I don't think anyone calls them that.
OTOH, there are half-ton pickup trucks that are trucks even though they can only carry about 1000 pounds. They are trucks because they are designed to carry cargo more than people, and pickup trucks don't even have a roof, so you can carry big cargo.

We have those too.
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wrote:

I thought in Brittain those were Lorries? Or is that between a vanette and a truck?
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In the UK, truck and lorry are similes. They both mean this:
https://img.grouponcdn.com/deal/hUG8nHmnGV1ehMKVSrKy/p4-1500x900/v1/c700x420.jpg
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In the UK it normally heats water to about 70-80C to flow round radiators to heat the house. And a similar temperature for hot water taps or to a tank to supply the taps later.

Why are they more popular in the US? We just don't like them here: https://www.thegreenage.co.uk/warm-air-ducted-heating-vs-wet-central-heating/

The fish?

This is what I mean - don't Americans call these trucks?
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In alt.home.repair, on Mon, 22 Jan 2018 00:49:11 -0000, "James Wilkinson

This is not true in the USA and it's hard to believe it's true anywhere. The air in the house is warmed, then warmed again and again later. There's a filter on the furnace to removed dust etc.
Air to be mixed with fuel may be pulled into the house from a vent.

If this means what it sounds like, I don't think this is true either, but I haven't had a gas furnace since 1964. Others will know, but I think there is a fire chamber separate from the air to be warmed. ???

The amount of fuel that goes up the chimney unburned decreases efficiency, but once fuel is burned, I don't think it matters if the air is heated directly or not. The heat might take longer to get to the air but the heat doesn't disappear just because it's indirect. The heat is still in the house and it still warms the house.

These would be advantages. Another big advantage is that central air cooling can be added very easily to the same air duct system.
I don't think I've ever heard of anything other than a mainframe computer room being cooled by cool water, and even less common is cooling a home with cold steam.

Here the market is big, a large percentage of houses, more than half I'm sure, have forced air heat. There is not much retrofitting. Places with steam and hot water radiators continue to use them.

So people have water heaters, either gas or electric.

Like I say, very little retrofitting. More likely to see repiping for radiators with the new pipes outsides the walls, but pipes are not as big as ducts.

Not true here.

I myself am not allegic to anything. The furnace has a filter that should be changed what, once a month, and some people get hepa filters or eledtrostatic filters.

Yes, of course

Just rewrite that sentence in the opposite order for new housing in America. My old apartment house built in 1930 had, and my grandmother's house built in 1940?? might have had radiator heat, but I don't think I've ever been in a house built from 1955 on that did.

Yes.

No.
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wrote:

SNIP

In new homes a heat recovery ventilation system does draw in some fresh air and exhaust some "stale" air after recovering heat through a "heat exchanger"

A "heat echanger" is used - the flame heats the heat exchanger which heats the interior air which is circulated through the building.

Virtually NO unburned fuel goes up the flue, and in "high efficiency" furnaces a second heat exchanger is used to cool the exhaust below the condensing point so all water vapour is removed from the exhaust, recovering the "latent heat of vapourization".. This allows the flue gasses to be directly vented using a plastic pipe through the wall, with no chimney or flue required. The burner is "fan forced" so no thermal draft is required.

It has not been replaced by hydronic heating to any great extent in North America, except for radiant heating.
In houses where hydronic radiant heating is used a coil in an air handler is very often used for hoit air heating, rather than using radiators in the rooms because central air conditioning already requires the ductwork.

But MANY homes that were originally built with electric baseboard and electric radiant heat are being retrofitted with forced air gas heat because electricity is so terribly expensive (here in Ontario, for sure)

And they are a lot more efficient than running a heating boiler to heat domestic hot water. Tankless heaters are becoming more common for their percieved better efficiency (which has proven to be debatable)

I know of many houses retrofitted with forced air. In a bungalow it is a total non-issue - particularly with a basement - and in 2 stories it just requires the addition of a few "chases" - sometimes being hidden in a closet - and sometimes opening a wall and patching the drywall when finished. Sometimes you need to pull up some flooring - but the payback for switching fromelectric to gas pays for the trouble pretty quickly.
When using hydronic radiant heat, it is quite common to simply run a hot water loop to a coil in a heat exchanger on the top floor, running ducts in the attic. (not as efficient in cold climates as the ducts need to be very well insulated to keep the heat in the ducts and out of the attic)

Actually the exact reverse, as VERY effective air filters can be built into the air handlers. Even HEPA filters can be integrated into the system - electrostatics (both active and passive) are VERY common.

There are some. Some people think forced air is a "dry" heat - and there are many europeans who come with their biases. Veissman sells a lot of boilers in Canada - but compared to the forced air furnaces sold by Lennox, Bryant, ICG, and about 20 other brands, the boilers are barely a blip.

We call then "blast furnaces" or Smelters.

get thr ft >>> We have those too. We also have smelt that you eat.

Even the Chrysler PT Cruiser was technically a truck

We don't get the Nissan Navara, but it would be considered a truck . ecently we are getting more and more 4 door "crew cabs" and "super crews" that have more passenger room than a fullsized sedan, and sometimes ridiculously short boxes - and HUGE towing capacities - often used for towing large "caravans" - known as RVs or "travel trailers" here - 35 footers are not uncommon.
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On 01/20/2018 05:32 PM, Thomas wrote:

It used to be that I couldn't use the microwave in the evening in December, because Christmas lights were on the same circuit. That problem is gone now since most of the lights are LED.
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Even xmas lights with bulbs used about 20 watts a set. Just how many did you have?
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On 01/21/2018 05:13 PM, James Wilkinson Sword wrote:
[snip]

It depends on what bulbs you're using. The (common in some places) C9 set uses 175W (25 * 7W). I called that 1.5A (going up a little for safety). I would have no more than 9 on a 15A circuit.

That never seemed relevant, considering there were so many different sizes. What I had took 7 circuits (with less than 15A on each).
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I've never known of such bright xmas lights! Ours are usually under a watt each bulb.
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In alt.home.repair, on Mon, 22 Jan 2018 19:35:37 -0000, "James Wilkinson

There are the skinny, tiny incandescent ones but there are, or were, others whose glass part is almost an inch long and over a half-inch wide. I presume those are the one Mark means.
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