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Old 07-11-2008, 03:47 PM   #1
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150 amp panel


Hey guys,

I have an old 3 unit apartment building that I'm going to rewire. The current service is 5 100 amp panels in the basement but I would like to have 150 amp panels in each apartment with a main breaker in the basement. At the moment I can't afford to have an electrician come out so I will be doing alot of it myself and with help from my uncle who used to be an electrician. Initially I need to get something quick done so that I can move in(the other apartments are vacant),My plans are to run a 150 amp cable from the apartment and connect it to a 100 amp breaker in the original panel. I would only wire up too a 100 amp load to the new breaker for the time being. Would this be a safe option for the short term? Also, what wire would I need for the supply?

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Old 07-11-2008, 04:03 PM   #2
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150 amp panel


Your plan is good, you'll need to run 2/0 SER or #1 copper 4 wire to your panels.

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Old 07-11-2008, 04:21 PM   #3
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150 amp panel


It might be just my experience/training, but I like to test what I've built.
I recommend buying/renting this gadget, which will answer your questions before you ask them.

http://www.idealindustries.com/media/pdfs/products/instructions/61-164-165_instructions_v4.pdf

Elsewise, with your [apparent] level of comfort with electricity you can run almost all the same tests with a DVM, an ammeter, a 10A load (e.g. a hair dryer or toaster), a 100W incandescent lamp, a doorbell xformer, and a 100 ohm, 100W rheostat.
Hosfelt.com has some of this stuff.

I'm not affiliated with Ideal or Hosfelt.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 07-11-2008 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 07-12-2008, 09:06 AM   #4
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150 amp panel


Is there a reason you want to put a 150 amp panel in each apartment? Has anyone done a load calculation? Will you be changing the service? Will this job be done under a permit and be inspected? Some places require a license to do multi family dwelling unit work. Have you talked with the building department?
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Old 07-12-2008, 11:53 AM   #5
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Yoyizit, I'm wondering what possibly an Ideal SureTest has to do with the original question.
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Old 07-12-2008, 11:56 AM   #6
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JPearce,

If you can't afford this now why are you doing anything at all? You say it is all wired with panels already, correct?

If it is that you need to move in and want to do the work before, why not just do the one apartment? Run the new 150A cable to the existing basement panel. Then an electrician can change the panel to a disconnect later.

Also, what do you mean you "would only wire up too a 100 amp load to the new breaker for the time being" ???
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Old 07-12-2008, 03:22 PM   #7
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150 amp panel


I've gotten the impression that once wiring is done to code further checks are not run unless the HO calls back.
This might be a false impression.

It also might be that once the wiring is done to code, there is hardly ever a need to check it so it makes good economic sense not to check it. This I wouldn't know.

I personally feel more comfortable if I run tests on work I have just done. And sometimes I find a problem in the HO's house that is an accident waiting to happen.
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Old 07-14-2008, 10:43 AM   #8
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I'm upgrading the service because I'll be putting in a washer/dryer, baseboard heat, etc. and all that is going to put me over 100a. The apartment is wired but it's so bad I wouldn't feel safe living there. For example, the stove is wired to a 15a circuit labeled lights. I am planing on just doing the one apartment right now but I would like to run the service cable up for the apartment above while I have the walls opened up. And, Speedy, I mean that I'm not going to upgrade the service from the electric company right away so I would only wire up to 100a in order to get moved in

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