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Old 05-29-2011, 11:11 PM   #1
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200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?


So due to some issues being raised in my rough inspection last Weds, and the next opportunity for reinspection being this coming Weds, I have part of my house disconnected. Let me see if I can whip up a quick diagram then explain:

So in the diagrams you'll see 3 configuraitons: current, interim and final. My question is if the interim configuration violates anything that would put my inspection at risk. I'm sure I'll have to explain that I intend to feed the 100A from the 200A panel, but until the POCO removes power from the old meter socket I cannot disconnect the 100A panel feeder.

The garage panel probably doesn't even figure into this, but it's part of the permit and in case anyone followed the other threads, I was able to reconnect both ends with the conduit without having to splice. (side note: I wanted to splice 2/0 SEU (which I already had) in anticipation that avoiding a conduit run would be cheaper, and that a conduit run would leave my cables too short. As it turns out, 2/0 was too large for the 100A breaker, and the materials needed to splice were much more expensive than a PVC conduit run.

So at any rate, the 200A panel was installed by me as a sub and runs new circuits for the kitchen and upstairs bedrooms. We've been operating on extension cords because I disconencted the feeder expecting to sail through rough inspection last Weds and get the POCO scheduled to bring in 200A.

Back to the diagram:

Current setup:
- 100A comes through the old meter socket into 100A main panel.
- 60A breaker feeds the 200A panel, this panel has circuits for kitchen and upstairs

At the point of rough inspection last weds:
- 100A comes through the old meter socket into 100A main panel.
- 200A panel is not fed by any live panel, cables disconnected at both ends
- New 200A socket is wired to 200A panel main breaker
- Garage subpanel fed from 100A breaker on 200A panel (breakers at off on both ends, no circuits connected yet in garage)

Proposed interim configuration:
- 100A comes through the old meter socket into 100A main panel.
- 200A panel is fed by 60A breaker in 100A main panel connected to a 60A breaker in the 200A panel
- New 200A socket is wired to 200A panel main breaker, main breaker is kept OFF
- Garage subpanel fed from 100A breaker on 200A panel (breakers at off on both ends, no circuits connected yet in garage)

After passing rough inspection when the POCO comes out, I will just turn off all main breakers and breakers associated with feeders for any panel. Hopefully either myself or wife can be present to turn on something that feeds the refrigerator at least.

Final configuration:
- 200A comes through the new 200A meter socket into 200A panel which is now main
- Old 100A panel is fed from the 200A panel from a 60A breaker which connects to the 100A main breaker on the 100A panel
- Garage subpanel fed from 100A breaker on 200A panel, with rough inspection passed I can insulate and drywall, paint the wall, install receptacles, put up pegboard over the drywall with furring strips, call for final and live happily ever after.

Any issues with that plan?
Attached Thumbnails
200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?-panel-configurations.jpg  

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Please do NOT consider any "before" picture of my house as any kind of endorsement of any particular construction method. In fact, you should probably assume that if I post a "before" picture, I am posting it because I am soliciting advice on a proper replacement for one of MANY things done wrong by a previous owner.
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Old 05-30-2011, 09:40 AM   #2
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200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?


After searching around, it sounds like what I'm considering should be okay going by this:

Backfeeding a sub-panel?

This just leaves me with some detailed questions regarding bonding neutral... The 200A panel will need to be bonded at the final stage, the 100A panel needs to be bonded for the current setup and presumably up until the moment it is disconnected. Is the inspector looking for the 200A to be bonded at rough inspection? It's just 1 screw so I guess I can leave it not bonded and if he needs to see it, 5 seconds and a screwdriver is all it takes.

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Old 05-30-2011, 12:55 PM   #3
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200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?


What issues were raised?
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:00 PM   #4
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200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?


The inspectors issues were unrelated to this question. The question is a result of having to rely on extension cords to supplement dead outlets. The 200A panel serves the dishwasher, the washing machine, the refrigerator, the kids bedroom lights and the outlets I'm using for working on the house. All of the above can't be plugged in at the same time. Dishes and laundry were piling up.

It wouldn't have been in issue if we passed inspection on Weds. and the POCO was out by Friday to hook up power to the 200A panel, then I could do my final hookup on the 100A for use as a sub.

So as to the question, the inspector failed me because the garage subpanel feeders were XHWN conductors which I had enclosed in 2" rigid metal conduit through my trench at 21" deep and up to the wall penetration of the building, but which I did not run in conduit in the remaining 3 feet from the wall to the panel on both ends. I had wrongly read the requirement for conduit rated for protection from physical damage. I read it as requiring conduit only up to the point where it enters the building. That requirement applies to protection from physical damage, but conduit is still required until the run enters a junction box or panel box.

As to the service entrance, he failed that for 2 things. 1) He wanted to see an insulated ground bushing where the load side cable exits the meter socket (even though the POCO allows NO ground conductors past the service disconnect, i.e. no ground conductors into the meter socket) 2) he wanted the service mast braced.

I've discussed the service mast in other threads, and this is a requirement that is ONLY his (and which I have not seen on ANY other resi mast). Whereas my POCO only requires bracing if service attachment point on the mast is more than 30" above the roof, AHJ requires bracing if the WEATHERHEAD is more than 30" above the roof. No load comes into the mast above the attachment point, but whatever. Further, he does not approve guy wire support for the service mast.

So I just finished my bracing. The photo I'm attaching is before the last anchor - took it because I knew by the time I finished it would be getting too dark to get a good picture. Also for fun, I'm attaching a photo of somebody else's service entrance.. Just a guess, but they must have gotten new siding and whoever installed should be slapped with a fish for forgetting to reattach the service entrance.
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200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?-service-mast-bracing-1.jpg   200A upgrade and move, backfeeding permitted?-service-mast-bracing-2.jpg  
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__________________
Please do NOT consider any "before" picture of my house as any kind of endorsement of any particular construction method. In fact, you should probably assume that if I post a "before" picture, I am posting it because I am soliciting advice on a proper replacement for one of MANY things done wrong by a previous owner.
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