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Old 08-07-2012, 10:22 PM   #1
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50A subpanel, FPE breaker in main keeps tripping at 38A.. upgrade to 60A?


I think that the wire is getting too hot... it is run through just under 50' (wire is the same) of 3/4" PVC on the side of the house, exposed to the sun 8+ hours each day. 100+ F most of the summer.

2 8AWG hots, 2 10AWG neutrals and 1 12AWG ground.

Rental so I can't really mess with the FPE main unfortunately but I need to upgrade the wire and breakers ASAP.

I have 60A 2 pole breaker already installed in the main going to an unused 4 ton AC that is out of commission and I can use. I'd like to use that in order to add a new circuit (5A max in addition to the 38A) to the subpanel. So considered the heat + sun on outdoor conduit, what size wire will I need? I assume 6 but don't wanna find out later I need to repurchase 50' of wires.

All loads are continuous 20+ hours/day. 38A is 240v, new 120v will only pull 5A. Do I need to upgrade the neutrals as well?

Sorry for such a needy first post I'm just stressin over this. Thanks in advance for any advice!

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Old 08-08-2012, 07:08 AM   #2
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50A subpanel, FPE breaker in main keeps tripping at 38A.. upgrade to 60A?


Many areas will only allow the owner of their home to perform any wiring in the home. You mentioned a rental so you should talk to the landlord. If you are the owner of the rental you should hire someone for liability reasons.

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Answers based on the National Electrical Code. Local amendments may apply. Check with your local building officials.
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