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Old 01-07-2010, 10:30 AM   #1
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Hello,

I have 100amp service, and thinking about upgrading to 200amp. We have 3600 sq. ft. house with Attached Apartment, 2 Car Garage, Horse barn, 2 Central A/C's 2 Dryers 2 Washers, 2 Air Handlers...gas stoves, and hotwater...and i want to build a workshop.

The current panel we have is rated for 200amp 40 slots with a 100 amp main breaker. My question is this...if I have the service upgraded, I should be able to keep the existing panel...they would just have to change the main breaker after the service upgrade?

Also, does anyone know what the min. conduit size for 200 amp service is in Massachusetts?

Thanks for any information.

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Old 01-07-2010, 10:39 AM   #2
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As long as the current panel is a 200a panel you can keep it
Your POCO will tell you what size conduit they want
My electrician installed 2" I think on our buried run

Check the price of the Main breaker VS buying a new 200a panel
Sometimes for the cost of the breaker you can buy a whole new panel
You could use the old panel as a sub in the workshop

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Old 01-07-2010, 01:07 PM   #3
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With the bevy of stuff you already have plus the workshop you are anticipating, you ought to leave the existing panel and related connected circuits - as long as it's in good shape and of newer vintage. Space allowing, just install a new 200amp (30-40 ckt) "main" (built-in main breaker) panel (use same manufacturer's panel as your existing one)adjacent to the existing panel. Then pipe & wire the new panel with 2" conduit, 200a meter & 200amp wiring accordingly.
Lastly, move the old 100 amp breaker into the new 200MDP and use it to back-feed the old panel with 100 amp wiring. Might want to move some of the larger circuits from the old panel into the new one as well to lighten up the load in it to 50% or less capacity.
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Old 01-07-2010, 04:15 PM   #4
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Or you could get a 200 amp main breaker with feed through lugs and feed your existing from that and have 8 space 16 circuit capability from the new panel plus space from your existing, if available.

Then your existing panel would just be an MLO panel (main lug, no main breaker)

Then use that 100 amp breaker as a spare to feed your workshop.

If you use copper, 1 1/2" PVC would be fine, aluminum will need to be 2". 2" regardless would be the way to go also, I say PVC due to bonding issues if you use metal.
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Old 01-08-2010, 05:26 AM   #5
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Thanks for your help, current panel is from 1988. I guess I never really thought of keeping it and just adding a new panel, but that is a great idea, we plan to finish the basement in the future, and this would allow it.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 01-08-2010, 09:27 AM   #6
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I buy the same Mfg panel - I have all Square D
That way I can use the same breakers in all panels

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