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Old 10-25-2010, 12:32 AM   #1
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3- or 4-wire SE Required?


For upgrade from 100 to 200 amp panel at the service entrance. Is it now required that we use 4-wire for service entrance, or can we use 3-wire. If 4 wire, I assume I'll have 2 hots, a neutral and a ground. For a 4-wire install, my concern is with the neutral and ground connections. I know the neutral will go to the center lug of the Main Breaker, but what of the ground? Will I place that on the ground bus or the neutral busbar - they aren't currently connected in the new panel I'm considering (a Homeline 40/40)? And should I place a jumper of some sort between the neutral and ground busses?

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Old 10-25-2010, 03:51 AM   #2
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3- or 4-wire SE Required?


In most cases, a "service entrance" uses a 3-wire (type SEU) cable. This is up to the first disconnect at or after the meter box.

From there, any sub-feed to a sub-panel must use a 4-wire (type SER) cable.

A separate equipment grounding bar is needed for the 4th wire.

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Old 10-25-2010, 11:54 AM   #3
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3- or 4-wire SE Required?


By "Service Entrance", I mean the main breaker panel (Load Center) in the house. I want to run 4/0 AL from the new 200A Meter Base into the Load Center in the house.

Kinda confused; how many wires will be in the 4/0 SE-U cable?
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:14 PM   #4
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3- or 4-wire SE Required?


As long as the meter box does NOT have a disconnect, then type SE-U cable would be acceptable in most areas for your service panel.

Type SE style U cable typically has 2 insulated conductors, with a 3rd bare conductor wrapped around the other 2, with an outer sheath covering the assembly.


All the conductors are current-carrying.

The neutral is bonded (grounded) to the enclosure in the service panel, and all the branch circuits have their neutral and ground wires connected to the same potential there as well.

Type SE style R cable typically has 3 or more insulated current-carrying conductors, with a bare grounding (non-current-carrying) conductor, all twisted together. There is also an outer sheath covering the assembly.



Neutral and grounding conductors are kept separated in any feeders, panels, circuits, and devices downstream from the main service.
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Last edited by kbsparky; 10-25-2010 at 02:19 PM. Reason: added pix
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