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-   -   Is one brand of panel better than another? (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/one-brand-panel-better-than-another-168829/)

Kodyb 01-11-2013 10:19 AM

Is one brand of panel better than another?
 
I'm replacing the main 200 amp service panel and was wondering if those you that deal with this on a more regualar basis have a preference in brand. The only big difference I can see is that the Square D QO breakers have the orange trip window. Other than that and the way they hook in I see no difference....

joecaption 01-11-2013 10:28 AM

If you stick with a Square D you will be able to find the breakers anywhere.

tylernt 01-11-2013 11:29 AM

If you do Square D you want QO, not Homeline. My house has Homeline and Square D doesn't make as many accessories and options for Homeline as it does QO.

J. V. 01-11-2013 12:27 PM

Panels are like cars. Everyone has a favorite and usually have a good reason. For me its usually cost. I used GE here at home and it has served me well. It was cheap compared to Square D.
The best panels have a copper buss and cost the most. I guess I recommend the panel with a copper buss and the more spaces the better. JMHO.

tylernt 01-11-2013 12:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by J. V. (Post 1091002)
I recommend the panel with a copper buss and the more spaces the better. JMHO.

Absolutely. If it physically fits in the space, get a 40-slot panel for sure. That way you don't have to fool around with tandems.

And if for some reason a 40-slot absolutely won't fit, make SURE that the panel you get will accept tandems in ALL slots, not just a couple of them. (I'm glaring at you, Square D :furious: .)

Jim Port 01-11-2013 01:05 PM

Many of the panels will only accept tandems in certain slots, if they accept them at all. This is not just a Square D issue.

The internals of a Squared D QO and Homeline are identical. Homeline is just the less expensive line from Square D.

tylernt 01-11-2013 01:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jim Port (Post 1091040)
The internals of a Squared D QO and Homeline are identical. Homeline is just the less expensive line from Square D.

Quality may be the same, but you can't get Square D interlock kits for certain Homeline panels. Like mine. :(

Billy_Bob 01-11-2013 01:56 PM

At the store(s) where you shop, look at the breakers and panel accessories they carry. And WHICH panel most of those are for.

You might need an extra grounding bar, various sizes of breakers, space saving breakers, GFCI breakers, AFCI breakers, a whole house surge protector which plugs into a double slot, etc. Some stores will carry those items, but for just one brand panel.

It is nice to be able to go to a store and find the accessory you need - not have to order it.

Trucon01 01-11-2013 02:14 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Attached is a pic of my new Square D QO panel / breakers. Another good thing with Square D is you can double tap the breakers, legally.

Jim Port 01-11-2013 02:25 PM

Cutler -Hammer CH can accept two conductors also in the smaller ampacities.

mpoulton 01-11-2013 02:36 PM

The last few panels I've installed (shop, garage, studio, and pool subpanels) have been Eaton (Cutler-Hammer) panels for BR breakers. They're cheap and common, accept tandem and quad breakers, and have enough accessories available. I chose them based on price and availability.

Kodyb 01-11-2013 03:42 PM

I've narrowed it down to either Square D QO or GE, leaning toward the GE for the simple fact of cost and it has a copper buss. I like the QO for the fact it has the orange trip indicators but I don't see the benefit of that for twice the cost... even the breakers for the QO are over twice the cost of the GE and even the sqaure D Homeline. GE's whole house surge protector is half the price too. Yep just talked myself into GE... Thanks for all the input guys!! :thumbup:

Speedy Petey 01-11-2013 04:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kodyb (Post 1091141)
I've narrowed it down to either Square D QO or GE, leaning toward the GE for the simple fact of cost and it has a copper buss.

QO also has a copper buss. Even so I cannot justify the added cost, and I HATE QO's neutral bar arrangement.

rrolleston 01-11-2013 05:39 PM

I really like the murray/siemens panels with tin coated copper bus. Even the milbank meter mains I like to install have siemens tin coated cobber bus in them.

sgip2000 01-11-2013 06:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Speedy Petey (Post 1091165)
QO also has a copper buss. Even so I cannot justify the added cost, and I HATE QO's neutral bar arrangement.

I know what you mean about the neutral bus. My service conductors come in on the side right next to the neutral bus blocking the upper half of the bus.


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