D 3 Number 12 Wires Equal One Number 8 Wire? - Electrical - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 01-26-2011, 07:34 PM   #1
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D 3 number 12 wires equal one number 8 wire?

Do three #12 wires equal at least one #8 wire?

In a sub panel I see 2 #8 wires in a 2 pole Circuit breaker and 3 number 12 wires are joined together and go from the neutral bus in the sub panel to the (one) neutral/ground bus in the main panel.

the 2 #8 wires are getting their juice from a 2 pole (40 amps per pole) Circuit breaker in the main panel. (back feeding)

My question: will the three #12 wires carry the neutral load safely?


Last edited by Uncle Wayne; 01-26-2011 at 07:36 PM.
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:40 PM   #2
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This is not code at all.

Unless this is in conduit, the following are the reasons.

All your conductors need to be bundled together (as in romex or UF cable)
And your Neutral is not allowed to be undersized.

Get us a picture if you can because this sounds like someone messed it up bad.

Also, if you have a subpanel you also should have a Ground Bar that is wired to the main's neutral/ground.


"Do it right the first time and avoid duplication of effort"

Your AHJ/Inspectors ALWAYS have the final say on ANY electrical code issue.
If in doubt, contact a licensed, experienced, reputable electrician to perform the work.
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Uncle Wayne (01-26-2011)
Old 01-26-2011, 08:00 PM   #3
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3 no.12's don't equal a #8.they need to be the same size as in 3 #8's.you can't do it.you need to change what you have.by code you need two hot's one neutral and one ground.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:00 PM   #4
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Only if you are wiring Speakers, not if working with Electric.
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