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Old 06-17-2006, 10:05 PM   #1
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Load Center

I am building a garge/workshop and plan on putting a 200 Amp system in. I bought a load center with meter head (Murry) last fall to use on the project. I was told it could be used with underground or overhead feed lines. When I opened the box last week I find it only has knockouts on top. The meter sets above the breakers and although in the same box, it is seperate from the breaker section.
Is it legal and safe to cut a hole in the botom of the box, install a 3" hub, and run the underground cables up through the box? An option may be to run the feed lines up through conduit outside the box then loop back into the overhead knockouts. Does either make sence? I have invested a lot in the box and breakers but if necessary I will start over. ANY HELP WILL BE APPRECIATED!


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Old 06-18-2006, 03:35 AM   #2
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where are you getting the power from? the house? if you connect from the house i don't think you need an meter head, unless you are getting electric from the pole, paying two bill. I'm stuck in a situation like you. well i would like to add a sub panel because the old panel and circuit breakers are outdate to add more up to date circuit breaker. they would cost around 60usd to get one breaker to be replaced. i know there are heavy gauge wires going from the meter to the 100A Main breaker. then two heavy gauge going from the 100A to the two hot bus bar. i just don't know where to connect the wire for the subpanel. My panel is in wall though. I don't know if it is legal to add 3" hub to run wire underground. personally i don't think underground is the best option. maybe from roof to roof. i don't get your second option. probably because i'm 15 yrs old thats why. there is no knock out on the bottom?


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Old 06-18-2006, 07:33 AM   #3
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dwayne, most of those meter/mains have facilities to bottom or top feed. The ones I get have blank covers for the top hub entries. I can bottom feed, top load out if I want.
There should be an "alley" along the side to feed the line side conductors up to the top of the meter. There should most definitely be knockouts in the bottom of that enclosure. You do NOT need a hub on the bottom, just locknuts.
The meter will always be on top, or to one side, but never below the main breaker.

Are you aware of all the other codes and requirements to do this installation? Grounding and bonding?

BTW- Underground is (almost) always better than overhead!
Sometimes I feel like if I answer any more questions it is like someone trying to climb over a fence to jump off a bridge and me giving them a boost.
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Old 07-08-2006, 02:07 PM   #4
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Thank you for the replies Justtired and Speedy Petey.
The lines will be new lines run from a new transformer installed by the power company. The garage is too far from the house lines to be useful. I am installing a 200 AMP system and the power company requires 3" conduit to do so. I prefer underground as it is less of an eyesore and almost everyone here has underground service. The 2nd option (not a great one) would run the lines underground to a post next to the garage, up the post, loop to the building and down into the box.
Petey -
When I bought the box I was told it could be used for top or bottom feed; however, it only has nockouts on the top and there is no "alley". I had considered building an alley to one side of the breakers. I will have to check with the power company to see if that is allowed. I may end up having to sell this box and buy another one.
Thanks agin to both of you!!

Last edited by dwayne; 07-08-2006 at 02:09 PM.
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Old 07-09-2006, 01:02 PM   #5
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That seems strange there are no knockouts on the bottom of the box, I don't think I've ever seen that sort of box without KO's in the bottom and on the lower sides. And the one on top that requires a hub is not a knock out, it's just a pre-punched hole with a small lip around it, and 4 more small holes to screw the hub, or cover, into.

That sucks about the 3 inch, they just made that rule here too, I don't think they give you a 3 inch KO, and I'm not even sure if a 3 inch will fit those style cans.

Also like Pete said, this really isn't a DIY project, you should call an electrician to have it done right.
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