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Old 08-18-2012, 11:24 AM   #1
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


Hi all, I am wanting to put a 240v outlet in my garage to run a new tig welder. I don't have any open breaker spots in my panel and was wanting to use some tandom breakers to free up some space. I'm not sure if I can use them in my panel or not because I can't find much on it information wise and GE's site is currently down for maintenance. It looks like there is a tandem breaker already installed in the bottom left. I'd like to install the outlet right below the panel since its in the garage. Here are some pictures.





Sorry about the sideways picture.

The welder say max Input of 29amps. I've done a little electrical like replacing fixtures and replacing receptacles but haven't swapped breakers around. I think I can do it but I just want it done the right way. I would upgrade or run a sub panel but I can't afford that. I'll be glad to provide any other information.

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Old 08-18-2012, 11:39 AM   #2
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


Here is a shot of the panel with the cover removed.


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Old 08-18-2012, 11:49 AM   #3
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


Check the label on the panel to see how many breaker handles the panel may have (a single wide tandem counts as two).

You need to find out whether a particular brand of tandem breaker is compatible with your panel.

When installing more tandem breakers, connect other circuits to them so you can free up two breaker slots next to each other for the welder circuit. Get a 30 amp double wide double breaker with the handles tied together for the welder circuit.

At a later date you can use that pair of slots for a subpanel feed breaker set and move the welder receptacle feed and 30 amp breaker to the subpanel.
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Last edited by AllanJ; 08-18-2012 at 11:53 AM.
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Old 08-18-2012, 11:50 AM   #4
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


A sub panel isn't that expensive. And since you are out of room in your panel it wouldn't be a bad idea. Is that something you could do yourself? Compared to the cost of the tig, the sub-panel is nothing.
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Old 08-18-2012, 12:08 PM   #5
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


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Check the label on the panel to see how many breaker handles the panel may have (a single wide tandem counts as two).

You need to find out whether a particular brand of tandem breaker is compatible with your panel.
Hmm I know it has 20 slots and there are physically 17 handles in there if that's what you are asking. I'm not the best with proper terminology. I was hoping to find info like xx spaces xx circuits but never could on the panel or the internet.

GE does make slim/tandem breakers that are compatible per the part numbers specified inside the panel like THQP, THHQP, THQL and so on.

Missouri Bound. As far as running a subpanel, I'm not sure what all is involved with that since I've never researched it so maybe its not as expensive as I thought. My panel is a 125 amp panel also.
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Old 08-18-2012, 12:11 PM   #6
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


drew...I urge you to do alittle research. The sub will open up future expansion capabilities. It can be next to the main, or you could take it to the garage (wherever) where the welder will be. I"m sure you have other workshop equipment that could be put on a sub as well.
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Old 08-18-2012, 12:46 PM   #7
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drew...I urge you to do alittle research. The sub will open up future expansion capabilities. It can be next to the main, or you could take it to the garage (wherever) where the welder will be. I"m sure you have other workshop equipment that could be put on a sub as well.
Yes I have more that I could designate that panel to. I just looked inside and I'm allowed to put the tandems on the bottom two of each row so that's four total. If I was to install a subpanel, I'd just do it next to the main since its in the garage. I MAY still try the tandems but if I was to want to install a subpanel, do I install a larger breaker and run that to supply the subpanel? Like I said I've never done this particular task with electrical before so I want to do it the way it should he done but I'm think I'm capable of doing it once I have all the info I need.

I tried searching for this topic before but the search feature always omitted the 220 or 240 when I searched.
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Old 08-18-2012, 12:51 PM   #8
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


Yes. Install the panel right next to the main. You will need a few interconecting conduits to pass wires to the sub and move any circuits you want to move to the sub. A few things to research also such as sub panel ground and neutral specifics, wire size for the panel feed. You can probably find an 8 to 12 circuit panel for $50. The rest is wiring and breakers.
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Old 08-18-2012, 03:23 PM   #9
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


Your directory shows slots 17,18,19,20 will accept tandems. Remove the 2 full size 15 amp breakers in slots 18 & 20. Install a 30 amp 2 pole tandem in slots 18B and 20A.


Instal 2 single pole 15 amp tandems in slots 18A and 20B to replace the 2 15 amp full size you removed.



Or install a sub panel as others have suggested.
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Old 08-18-2012, 04:28 PM   #10
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So you are saying if I install a 30a tandem in 18b and 20a that will produce the 240 I need? Then use the slim line breakers for the full sized one I took out. So the 30a will actually be between the two slim ones correct? I do know the tandems are rated for 240v but I didn't know you could use a single tandem to get 240. Is this an ok thing to do? It's easier and cheaper than a subpanel and at the moment that helps as long as its safe.
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Old 08-18-2012, 05:50 PM   #11
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


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So you are saying if I install a 30a tandem in 18b and 20a that will produce the 240 I need? Then use the slim line breakers for the full sized one I took out. So the 30a will actually be between the two slim ones correct? I do know the tandems are rated for 240v but I didn't know you could use a single tandem to get 240. Is this an ok thing to do? It's easier and cheaper than a subpanel and at the moment that helps as long as its safe.
Exactly, the slim 2 pole bridges the 2 slots and gets 120 from each. The slim single poles go above and below the slim 2 pole and replaces the 2 full sized you removed. Less that $20 for all 3 breakers you need.
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Old 08-19-2012, 08:33 AM   #12
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


Sorry to keep asking questions but doesn't the breaker for the 240 need to have a connected handle? I have the dishwasher and disposal run off a two pole connected handle breaker but they are just 120. I was thnking about putting those on a single 15a tandem breaker and swapping the two pole 15a for a 30a to run 220 from. I believe they are supposed to be tied like that though so i may not.
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Old 08-19-2012, 08:43 AM   #13
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


You can't put 240v loads on slimline breakers. The slimlines are drawing 120v from the same leg of the service. The only way to hook up 240v loads is to use full size breakers. So you move some 120v loads to the slimline spacesavers or whatever you want to call them. Then remove the 15a breakers that you just took the wires off and replace them with a two pole 30a breaker.
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Old 08-19-2012, 08:46 AM   #14
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


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Sorry to keep asking questions but doesn't the breaker for the 240 need to have a connected handle? I have the dishwasher and disposal run off a two pole connected handle breaker but they are just 120. I was thnking about putting those on a single 15a tandem breaker and swapping the two pole 15a for a 30a to run 220 from. I believe they are supposed to be tied like that though so i may not.
Yes the 240 circuit needs to be on a 2 pole breaker with the handles connected (the one I showed has that).

Your DW and disposer are on a MWBC (multi wire branch circuit) and also needs the 2 handles tied together. If you change that to a slim breaker, it must bridge 2 slots so that each 120 volt circuit comes of a different phase in the panel. Careful what you do here, if you get it wrong you risk overloading the common neutral.
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Old 08-19-2012, 09:22 AM   #15
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Looking tp put a 240v outlet in garage.


I apologize I didn't know they were a shared handle type breaker.....I actually just came out of lowes and was going edit that post but you got to it first. I have what I need for the breakers now. 2 slim 15s and 1 slim double pole 40a. Got the 40 because I may have a chance to get an ac/dc tig instead of just dc and when welding aluminum it draws more amps. I will get the correct wire for this breaker when I go to wire it up.

Thanks to everyone who helped me out here. I've learned quite a bit in the past two days!

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