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ppearl 08-26-2012 01:58 PM

Hi, I have sort of a general question about design on a house I have gutted and plan to live in. The home is quite small, around 900 sq. ft. It's down to new construction rough in stage. I have finished making changes to framing, and re plumbed all the waste and supply lines, etc. and am ready to proceed with the electrical. I have quite a bit of background in this kind of stuff, and worked on quite a bit of electrical in the past and dont really have any code questions.... I work on A/C systems for a living, but I have never designed an electrical system from the ground up. I wanted to throw this out there and see if anyone has any suggestions or comments. Here is my plan:

The meter was pulled after a fire a few years ago, but the stand alone base is in good condition, mounted to the exterior brick. I plan on installing an outdoor 200 amp panel below the base.... this will be used for a package unit A/C, pool, outdoor lighting... stuff like that. In the 200 amp service, I'm thinking I want to install a 100 amp breaker, and feed a 100 amp panel inside the house. On the 100 amp panel will be a 40 gal. water heater, fridge, electric range, dishwasher, over the range microwave, a stacked washer/dryer, and approx 6 small circuits for general outlets and lighting.

Does this sound like a good setup? It's not really a cost problem, I just can't really see putting a giant 200 amp panel inside if its overkill. This will be inspected also, and I would like to get it right the first time. I saw recently at lowes some 125 amp panels. Also, Is that how feeding another panel is usually done? (installing a properly sized double pole breaker and simply feeding it to the lugs of the target panel.)

Sorry if that was long winded, I'm fine on the install, but am moving out of my comfort zone on the design. Any comments or suggestions, tips?

Thanks - Phill

rjniles 08-26-2012 02:41 PM

You plans from the outside panel to the inside sub panel sounds OK. Note you need a 4 wire feed for the sub panel. Concern is: the meter socket and the wiring to the socket rated or 200 amps?

ppearl 08-26-2012 03:05 PM

Thanks for the quick reply
I actually didn't think about that. It makes sense I guess the nuetral needs to go in as well.

I'm not quite sure how to tell if the existing service was 200 amps... all the breakers and circuit wires were taken by vandals. They didn't take the couple feet of aluminum wire coming out of the meter base going into the top of the panel though. I'm not sure on the size of the cable... pretty large, probly as big around as my thumb. I'm going out there in a min. I think, to look at it some more.

What about just running all my circuits back to the main panel on the outside of the home. I kind of don't like the idea of having to walk around the back of the house if I need to use the breakers. Would that even pass?

Jim Port 08-26-2012 03:47 PM

If your incoming cable is thumb sized it is probably a 100 amp service. This should be enough for your 900 square foot house.

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