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Old 06-20-2008, 05:59 PM   #1
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Another subpanel question:)


I've installing a subpanel in my detached shed. I've read some conflicting answers on whether or not I should seperate the ground and neutral at the subpanel.

I've already dug a trench and ran 3-wire romex(H-N-G) in conduit to the shed. I wish I had used 4-wire(H-H-N-G), but alas I didn't. It will only be used for a few lights anyway.

Now, I've read here that I need to install a ground rod for the subpanel itself because the shed is detached from the house where the main panel is.

Now my conflict comes in whether or not to keep the ground and neutral seperate at the subpanel. Some say it should be, but others say that because I'm only using 3-wire it doesn't need to be seperated. What's the correct answer?

Also, one more question about grounding. Even though I'm using a ground rod at the subpanel too, do I still need to run the ground wire from the main panel feed to the ground bar in the subpanel?

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Old 06-20-2008, 06:06 PM   #2
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Another subpanel question:)


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Originally Posted by primal65 View Post
I've installing a subpanel in my detached shed. I've read some conflicting answers on whether or not I should seperate the ground and neutral at the subpanel.

I've already dug a trench and ran 3-wire romex(H-N-G) in conduit to the shed. I wish I had used 4-wire(H-H-N-G), but alas I didn't. It will only be used for a few lights anyway.
Why dont you people ask questions BEFORE you hack it up?

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Old 06-20-2008, 06:42 PM   #3
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Another subpanel question:)


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Originally Posted by chris75 View Post
Why dont you people ask questions BEFORE you hack it up?
Because that's common sense.

Curiously, he's searched the board for neutral-ground bonding info but skipped right over the same information stating Romex is not allowed. Must be nice picking and choosing which codes you want to comply with.

Doesn't HD/Lowes even sell THWN by the foot? There really isn't any reason to even run Romex....
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Old 06-20-2008, 07:11 PM   #4
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Another subpanel question:)


Did you run romex(NM) or underground feeder(UF) wire. Romex is not approved for outdoor or underground use, if you used romex you need to change it to UF or run conduit and pull THHW. As far as the panel, if you are just running lights do not install a panel, just run the wire in the shed as a branch circuit, this eliminates the need for a seperate ground rod and 4 wire feeder, be sure to use GFCI breaker or feed from the load side of a GFCI receptacle.
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Old 06-20-2008, 11:14 PM   #5
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Another subpanel question:)


Your question about the bonding of the ground and neutral and the ground rod depends on which code cycle your location has adapted. The Romex type NM is not permitted for underground installation. Type UF is permitted. So we need more information to give you a correct answer.
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Old 06-21-2008, 04:26 AM   #6
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Another subpanel question:)


Seriously, Chris75 and Cow, if you all hate life so much and are impatient with people on a DIY forum then perhaps you should just cancel yourself. If people like I make you so angry then why the hell are you here?


Now to the 2 people who've actually contributed something to this thread: Thank you.

I tend to use the term Romex as a generic term for electrical wire. The wire I've used is actually UF from lowes intended for direct burial. I would link it, but the lowes site is down. Even though it was for direct burial I put it in conduit.

I would follow your advice wire_twister, but I already have a subpanel installed. See, I did all this a couple months ago. I thought I had the correct procedures. But now I'm hearing different things about a seperate ground rod for the subpanel.

Here's what I have already:

A 50 amp breaker hooked to a 100ft UF 10/3 running underground in conduit to a small breaker box in the shed. The UF hot is hooked to one of the Hot bus bars in the subpanel box(there's 2 hot bars in the subpanel, as of course this box was intended for a 4-wire feed. I realized after the fact). The UF neutral is hooked to the neutral bar in the subpanel, and the ground is hooked to a seperate ground bar I bought and installed in the subpanel.

I then have, in the shed, romex ran from a 20 amp breaker in the box chained to 2 receptacles.

I was pretty sure I had done this all correctly until lately when I was reading I should have put in a seperate ground bar near the shed for the sub-panel.

I hope this helps you understand my questions. Thanks again for any replies.
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Old 06-21-2008, 06:33 AM   #7
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Another subpanel question:)


First the 50 amp breaker is to big. It needs to be a single pole 30 amp. You have a single circuit going to the shed, using one hot, one netural and one ground. I would put a ground rod at the shed, connect it to the ground bar, along wwith the ground wire from the house, leave the one hot connected to the panel, and make sure the bomd screw that goes into the netural bar is discarded. This gives you a single 120v/30 amp service to the shed.
Good Luck!
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Old 06-21-2008, 07:53 AM   #8
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Another subpanel question:)


Thanks for the reply, jbfan. I appreciate the help.
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Old 06-21-2008, 08:39 AM   #9
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Another subpanel question:)


Quote:
Originally Posted by primal65 View Post
Seriously, Chris75 and Cow, if you all hate life so much and are impatient with people on a DIY forum then perhaps you should just cancel yourself. If people like I make you so angry then why the hell are you here?
Because we do come here so much it gets frustrating when SO MANY folks think they know better, or even know what they are doing, yet don't.
Armed with this lack of knowledge they still go out and attempt things they are not ready for.
Even you yourself said you thought you knew what you were doing but were wrong. Electrical work is NO PLACE to be guessing, or thinking you are right. You should know what you are doing BEFORE you throw yourself into a job.


For some of us these sites are stress relief. They are for me. Part of that stress relief is ranking on folks. Sorry.
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Old 06-21-2008, 08:50 AM   #10
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Another subpanel question:)


I have to agree with Pete, don't come on here after doing shotty work and not expect to get chewed on.

It is clear by your posts that this was not inspected, that was your first mistake. Especially as a DIY you should be haveing your work inspeced to make sure it is done correctly.

next time you have a question follow this guys example Separating Fan and Light Switches He laid out exactly what he was PLANNING to do and then came here to see what the experts thought of his idea. If you would have approached it like this, you probably would have got a friendlier response.

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Old 06-21-2008, 11:48 AM   #11
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Another subpanel question:)


Quote:
Originally Posted by primal65 View Post
Seriously, Chris75 and Cow, if you all hate life so much and are impatient with people on a DIY forum then perhaps you should just cancel yourself. If people like I make you so angry then why the hell are you here?


Now to the 2 people who've actually contributed something to this thread: Thank you.

I tend to use the term Romex as a generic term for electrical wire. The wire I've used is actually UF from lowes intended for direct burial. I would link it, but the lowes site is down. Even though it was for direct burial I put it in conduit.

I would follow your advice wire_twister, but I already have a subpanel installed. See, I did all this a couple months ago. I thought I had the correct procedures. But now I'm hearing different things about a seperate ground rod for the subpanel.

Here's what I have already:

A 50 amp breaker hooked to a 100ft UF 10/3 running underground in conduit to a small breaker box in the shed. The UF hot is hooked to one of the Hot bus bars in the subpanel box(there's 2 hot bars in the subpanel, as of course this box was intended for a 4-wire feed. I realized after the fact). The UF neutral is hooked to the neutral bar in the subpanel, and the ground is hooked to a seperate ground bar I bought and installed in the subpanel.

I then have, in the shed, romex ran from a 20 amp breaker in the box chained to 2 receptacles.

I was pretty sure I had done this all correctly until lately when I was reading I should have put in a seperate ground bar near the shed for the sub-panel.

I hope this helps you understand my questions. Thanks again for any replies.
Do not get offended. We all get a little butt chewing here once and a while. And most of the time we do deserve it. What the guys are trying to get across to all of the DIY's is to ask before attempting to do the work. Every job you do in life requires a plan. Thought about in advance and verified by the authority, or in your case this forum. So let it go and we will try to help you.

I think there may be an exception where you can use 3 wires in this feeder thus making your sub panel another service panel. That is why jrclen asked for more information. What code cycle is your AHJ enforcing? You can call and ask without getting busted. Get this info he asked for and I am certain we can help.

How many circuits do you need? Maybe we can just use a branch circuit for your shed.
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Old 06-21-2008, 12:49 PM   #12
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Another subpanel question:)


Quote:
I think there may be an exception where you can use 3 wires in this feeder thus making your sub panel another service panel.
Since the OP said he used 10/2 UF (well actually he said 10/3 but also said specifically he had only H-N-G), he cannot make this a feeder for a 120/240 panel. The only options are to make this a 120V/30A subpanel as jbfan described, or to make it a 120V/20A branch circuit. In either case, the 50A breaker is too large for the 10ga wire.
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Old 06-22-2008, 09:33 AM   #13
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Another subpanel question:)


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Originally Posted by HouseHelper View Post
Since the OP said he used 10/2 UF (well actually he said 10/3 but also said specifically he had only H-N-G), he cannot make this a feeder for a 120/240 panel.
That depends which code cycle he is required to follow.
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Old 06-22-2008, 09:49 AM   #14
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Another subpanel question:)


Quote:
Originally Posted by jrclen View Post
That depends which code cycle he is required to follow.
No, I don't believe there is any code cycle that permits using the bare conductor of NM/UF cable as a neutral.
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Old 06-22-2008, 09:50 AM   #15
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Another subpanel question:)


Quote:
Originally Posted by HouseHelper View Post
No, I don't believe there is any code cycle that permits using the bare conductor of NM/UF cable as a neutral.
Absolutely correct.

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