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bsperr 12-08-2009 04:48 PM

Service mast options
I am currently in the planning stages of a service upgrade and am trying to decide how to handle the service mast. The current setup is overhead service with the meter located on the side of the house, which has a hip roof and 2ft eave. The current mast is 2" galvanized steel and goes up the side of the house, through the soffit and through the roof. I'm going to keep it as overhead service, and the new meter will remain on the same side of the house. I'm thinking about just building the new service right next to the current one with a new meter/main panel (required by the local inspector) and a PVC mast up the side of the house with the weatherhead a few inches below the soffit. I'm planning to put the point of attachment (an eyebolt provided by the poco) into the fascia board directly above the weatherhead after installing some blocking in between those rafter tails. I'll also install the new breaker panel and run all of the service conductors and feeders and install the new gec in advance. This way, I'll have everything built by the the time I need the poco to cut the service, and then I can just splice the old circuits to my new breaker panel, get it inspected, and have the poco reconnect the new service (hopefully within the same day).

Does this sound like a viable plan? Going through the roof isn't necessary to meet the clearances required by the NEC or the poco. I'd also like to avoid any penetrations in the roof if I can (I'll be reroofing soon and would take out the old service mast at that time). I thought about just reusing the old service mast, since it's in decent shape, or putting a new rigid steel mast through the same opening, but I'm concerned that I wouldn't be able to accomplish all of that, in addition to splicing my circuits to the new breaker panel, between the time that I get my power cut in the morning and I get it inspected in the afternoon. I'd like to avoid having to build a temp power pole if possible. Are there any downsides to have a pvc mast set up this way? Thanks for any advice or feedback.

jbfan 12-08-2009 04:53 PM

As long as the clearance is met, that works.
Just make sure that the point of attachment is rock solid.

220/221 12-08-2009 06:16 PM

You better check with the power company.

Here, a steel mast is required and the point of atachment must be installed on the mast.

Jim Port 12-08-2009 06:46 PM

The point of attachment is supposed to be lower than the weatherhead.

Can use use type SE-U cable in your area?

spark plug 12-08-2009 06:59 PM


Originally Posted by jbfan (Post 363600)
As long as the clearance is met, that works.
Just make sure that the point of attachment is rock solid.

Maybe the reason that the original Service mast (and weather head) went through the roof was because otherwise there was no clearance. (min. of 15ft. for the Service drop. (No matter what) Don't drink and Drive, Ever!!!

bsperr 12-09-2009 08:24 AM

Thanks for the replies. I double checked the poco's specs, and they only require a steel, through-the-roof mast if it's necessary to obtain clearances. As far as the attachment point, I thought the NEC allowed it be above the weather head as long as it was within 24". I might have trouble locating it below the weather head along the side wall of the house, because the angle to the transformer is so acute, and the eave is so long, that I'm afraid the poco's lines would rub up against my fascia.

I also thought that the required clearance above residential property (subject to just pedestrian traffic) was only 10' for a drip loop and 12' for the rest of the service conductors . The poco requires 12' for the drip loop and all service conductors, and I should be able to meet that without going through the roof.

Michael Thomas 12-09-2009 08:48 AM

Just make sure it not passing above a pool (22' required) and that you don't intend to build a high enough deck under its path to cause future clearance problems (I see this frequently).

Also, keep in mid that the 10' rule (12', in your case) is a minimum safety requirement.... for example, what happens when a someone raises a 7' aluminum umbrella pole 4' off the ground to insert it into a table under a 10' drop?

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