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Old 08-20-2008, 06:35 PM   #1
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


Hello everyone. I'm planning on running electricity to a 160 square foot shed and want to know if I have the capacity for what I'm planning on doing.

The house is a 1950s era construction (~1650 square feet including garage) that was recently renovated. The house was rewired with 3-wire copper; however, the investor didn't pull any permits for the work, so I'm not 100% confident all the work was done in a completely safe/code compliant manner.

The house has 125A 240V service with a matching breaker panel. Currently the following breakers are installed:

- 12 20A circuits for wall outlet power, fridge, microwave, heater (fan), dishwasher, and disposal.

- 3 15A lighting circuits

- 2 30A 240V circuits for the dryer and A/C

One item of note, for four of the 20A breakers two 2-pole 20A breakers are used. In both cases, each pole of the 2-pole breaker is allowed to be switched independently of the other. Is this safe? These are the breakers for the fridge plus a kitchen outlet, the microwave, and the heater fan. It seems to me, that if I had one of these breakers off, I could still be shocked while working on the "off" circuit by the neutral wire sinking the current from the other circuit on the 2-pole breaker.

I do think that several of the 20A outlet circuits are fairly lightly loaded. Two rooms of the house (4 bed room home) see little to no use.

Back to my question at hand, I want to have a 10,000 BTU A/C, three outlets, and lighting in my shed. I was thinking that I need a 15A and two 20A circuit (one for the A/C and one for the three outlets). The outlets in the shed will be used for running power tools and other utility appliances.

I plan to use direct burial cabling, probably three runs of 10/3, connected to GFCI breakers in the box. Flipping through the 2008 NEC, it seems that I can do this as long as I bury the wire a minimum of 12" in the earth. What should I use as conduit for the wire where it's above 12" of bury, i.e running from the box to the earth and from the earth to the entry on the shed? Plastic or metal?

I guess my main two questions are, are the three circuits (15, 20, and 20) correct for my uses and do I have enough capacity for adding these?

Sorry for rambeling on, but I appreciate any input.

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Old 08-20-2008, 07:45 PM   #2
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


First thing is to get an Inspector out there to look over the work, and check to see if Permits where pulled or needed. From there, talk to an Electrical Engineer that deals with Residential, and you will get your answer.

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Old 08-20-2008, 08:29 PM   #3
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


Today 04:45 PM gregzoll First thing is to get an Inspector out there to look over the work, and check to see if Permits where pulled or needed. From there, talk to an Electrical Engineer that deals with Residential, and you will get your answer.

WOW, that was a crappy answer. Are you actually on here to help or just bag on people?
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Old 08-20-2008, 08:54 PM   #4
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


Quote:
Originally Posted by houstonbrama View Post

WOW, that was a crappy answer. Are you actually on here to help or just bag on people?
That was a pretty crappy answer, not only that, why on earth would you get a engineer involved? these are simple NEC load calculations...
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Old 08-20-2008, 08:59 PM   #5
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Magnus357 View Post

Back to my question at hand, I want to have a 10,000 BTU A/C, three outlets, and lighting in my shed. I was thinking that I need a 15A and two 20A circuit (one for the A/C and one for the three outlets). The outlets in the shed will be used for running power tools and other utility appliances.

I plan to use direct burial cabling, probably three runs of 10/3, connected to GFCI breakers in the box.

Your only allowed one feeder or branch circuit to an outbuilding. so your gonna have to plan on installing a sub-panel at your shed, this will include a 4-wire feeder, grounding electrode system, permits and inspections.
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Old 08-21-2008, 10:31 AM   #6
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


Only one circuit?

That's not how I've read the NEC. It seems that as long as use 120V circuits with 20A or less, I can run direct burial cable for each circuit.

Do you have a code reference for the single circuit limitation?
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Old 10-13-2012, 09:15 AM   #7
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


Wow these answers aren't any help. You don't need inspecters or permits
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Old 10-13-2012, 09:52 AM   #8
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Do I have any more electrical service capacity? (Power for Shed)


This is a 4 year old thread. By now the OP has made his decision on what he wanted to do. Please don't needlessly revive old threads with comments that could start a long off topic debate, thank you.

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