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Old 09-10-2011, 08:32 AM   #16
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Question about dual main panels


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Originally Posted by Code05 View Post
Typical idiot at Lowes. They screw up this question all the time.
Lowes or HD and even my farm store say #2 AL is good for 100 amps and they are not totally wrong, but this is a two sided problem... The electrician (read as DIYer) should also know what should be required for his project.
OP - Since the wire is cut, the easy thing to do is as Speedy said, buy a 90 amp breaker instead of a 100 amp. The sub-panel can still have a 100 amp disconnect breaker.

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Old 09-10-2011, 08:39 AM   #17
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Question about dual main panels


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Originally Posted by a7ecorsair View Post
Lowes or HD and even my farm store say #2 AL is good for 100 amps and they are not totally wrong, but this is a two sided problem... The electrician (read as DIYer) should also know what should be required for his project.
OP - Since the wire is cut, the easy thing to do is as Speedy said, buy a 90 amp breaker instead of a 100 amp. The sub-panel can still have a 100 amp disconnect breaker.

If the OP is under 2008, I think he will need a 80 amp breaker for #2 SER.
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Old 09-10-2011, 08:41 AM   #18
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Question about dual main panels


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Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
I have to say off the record, MANY places still allow the use of #2SER for a 100A sub-panel. No one around here gives it a second thought.
#1SER is nonexistent around here, and 90A breakers are lame.
Interesting...
My state electrical inspector doesn't allow it.
So as far as this project goes, should the OP contact the inspector first and get a ruling or wire it up and see what happens at inspection time?
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Old 09-10-2011, 09:44 AM   #19
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Question about dual main panels


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If the OP is under 2008, I think he will need a 80 amp breaker for #2 SER.
I know right. That STUPID simple one term code change that messed things up. How lame.
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Old 09-10-2011, 09:46 AM   #20
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Question about dual main panels


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Interesting...
My state electrical inspector doesn't allow it.
So as far as this project goes, should the OP contact the inspector first and get a ruling or wire it up and see what happens at inspection time?
That's why I said "off the record". I couldn't in good conscience directly recommend it since it is a local (and contentious) issue.

Luckily my state does not have "state" inspectors. Most I have ever heard of were on power trips.
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Old 09-10-2011, 10:09 AM   #21
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Question about dual main panels


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Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
I know right. That STUPID simple one term code change that messed things up. How lame.
Agreed.
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Old 09-10-2011, 11:09 AM   #22
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Question about dual main panels


If it is USE-2 that he will use will that change anything? It is a detached garage so I'd guess the cable will go in a trench.
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Old 09-10-2011, 05:25 PM   #23
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Question about dual main panels


OK, here's the update.

Yes, Corsair, I put in the conduit when we first moved in and redid the driveway. I'm just not getting around to doing the wiring.

Went back to Lowes and confirmed with them, and also with 2 other independent electricians, that 2-2-2-4 aluminum is standard here for wiring 100 amp subpanels. They all told me they don't see anything else, ever. I confirmed the 100 amp/90 amp situation too, and they all assured me the inspector is going to expect to see a 100 amp breaker, so that's what I got. If anyone raises a stink later, I can easily swap out the one in the box for a 90. I really don't need the 100 amps in the garage anyway, it's more of a future-proof kind of thing.

Also, Lowes had the Squre-D neutral lug in stock, so that was an easy fix.


Thanks for all of the help and input. It makes it easier when you can ask first and not have to redo it for the inspector.
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Old 09-10-2011, 06:10 PM   #24
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Question about dual main panels


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Originally Posted by drodge View Post
OK, here's the update.

Yes, Corsair, I put in the conduit when we first moved in and redid the driveway. I'm just not getting around to doing the wiring.

Went back to Lowes and confirmed with them, and also with 2 other independent electricians, that 2-2-2-4 aluminum is standard here for wiring 100 amp subpanels. They all told me they don't see anything else, ever. I confirmed the 100 amp/90 amp situation too, and they all assured me the inspector is going to expect to see a 100 amp breaker, so that's what I got. If anyone raises a stink later, I can easily swap out the one in the box for a 90. I really don't need the 100 amps in the garage anyway, it's more of a future-proof kind of thing.

Also, Lowes had the Squre-D neutral lug in stock, so that was an easy fix.


Thanks for all of the help and input. It makes it easier when you can ask first and not have to redo it for the inspector.
If you are using SER cable it is not rated for underground use even in conduit.
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Old 09-10-2011, 06:49 PM   #25
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Question about dual main panels


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Originally Posted by drodge View Post
...Went back to Lowes and confirmed with them, and also with 2 other independent electricians, that 2-2-2-4 aluminum is standard here for wiring 100 amp subpanels. They all told me they don't see anything else, ever. I confirmed the 100 amp/90 amp situation too, and they all assured me the inspector is going to expect to see a 100 amp breaker, so that's what I got...
This arises because many donít understand 310.15(B)(6) [310.15(B)(7) in 2011 NEC]. Though local jurisdictions can approve or disapprove 100A on #2 AL, many inspectors and electricians donít know or understand the section. My opinion.

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