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Old 10-26-2014, 02:22 PM   #1
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Sub-panel feeder to detached shed


There is a shed about 10' from the front of my house, it's actually an enclosed portion of my carport, but for all practical purposes lets call it a shed.

On the front of my house is a wooden deck that is about 6" off the ground, that spans the space from my house to my shed. I can't get under it to trench or secure wiring.

The crux of my question is this, if I wanted to upgrade service to this panel, I'm assuming that I'll have to bring it up to 2014 code which means, among other things, 4-wire feeder that has Hot-Hot-Neutral-Ground. The run is under 100', so I don't think voltage drop is going to play a major factor.


Can I run UF feeder or EMT/RMC conduit with W rated wiring from the house to the shed under the deck without securing or burying the wire? - Probably not, but just checking.

My second idea is to run the wire inside the house and drill though to the exterior of the house. If I do this, can I secure the cable in EMT or PVC conduit along the outside edge of the deck to the car port, or would I have to trench the wire?

There is an existing #10 wiring (Hot-Hot-Neutral) running from the house to what looks like a 70 amp 2 circuit panel, protected at 30 amps at the main panel and 30 amps at the sub panel. The branches are fed with #14 wire . I'm fixing that right now.

It feeds 2 pair of flood lights on the carport, 3 incandescent lights in the carport, a dusk-dawn lamp in the yard, and a couple of convenience outlets. At some point I'd like to upgrade the electrical outlets to a 20 amp circuit and leave the lighting on the 15 amp circuit.

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Old 10-26-2014, 05:54 PM   #2
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Sub-panel feeder to detached shed


Just replaced the two 30 amp DP breaker in the sub-panel . . discovered that whomever installed this Homeline panel used EATON breakers and modified the panel to accept them, I'm guessing this was never inspected or the inspector was not paying attention.

I put the proper breakers in there but I'm now convinced that this sub-panel needs to be replaced since the breakers are not secured as they should be.



So now I have 2 questions, based on vanilla 2014 NEC:

1) If I replace this sub-panel, it's in a lousy spot on the inside of the "shed". I could easily cut a hole in the wall and flush mount it so the panel faces the inside of the car port. It would still be sheltered from weather. Could I use the same indoor HOM2-4L70 panel since I already have the breakers (new), it's also $15? Or should I splurge on the Weatherproof version with a main?

2) Since the sub-panel is a main lug, and only has 4 poles, do I need a disconnecting means in/on the shed, or is the breaker on the main panel acceptable? I thought I saw something about panels with 6 or fewer poles don't need a disconnecting means.

3) If I replace the panel, I'll need to re-run the wires as mentioned in post 1. Any thoughts on just running the cable between the ground and the deck given that I can't get under there to secure it, or should I just bite the bullet and have it come out the side of the house and either bury it or secure it to the deck in RMC/IMC/EMT/PVC conduit? I'm leaning towards a 40 Amp feeder. I have not had any problems when it was actually protected at 20 amp.

Thanks Guys.

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Old 10-26-2014, 11:07 PM   #3
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Sub-panel feeder to detached shed


Quote:
Originally Posted by b4bhomeowner View Post
Just replaced the two 30 amp DP breaker in the sub-panel . . discovered that whomever installed this Homeline panel used EATON breakers and modified the panel to accept them, I'm guessing this was never inspected or the inspector was not paying attention.

I put the proper breakers in there but I'm now convinced that this sub-panel needs to be replaced since the breakers are not secured as they should be.



So now I have 2 questions, based on vanilla 2014 NEC:

If someone played with the sub to allow for different breakers, replace it.

1) If I replace this sub-panel, it's in a lousy spot on the inside of the "shed". I could easily cut a hole in the wall and flush mount it so the panel faces the inside of the car port. It would still be sheltered from weather. Could I use the same indoor HOM2-4L70 panel since I already have the breakers (new), it's also $15? Or should I splurge on the Weatherproof version with a main?

I would go with a NEMA 3R in both cases. The panel can be placed on the exterior if need be.


2) Since the sub-panel is a main lug, and only has 4 poles, do I need a disconnecting means in/on the shed, or is the breaker on the main panel acceptable? I thought I saw something about panels with 6 or fewer poles don't need a disconnecting means.

If the panel is in a detached structure it needs a disconnecting means of some type. You can get away with 6 throws if the panel has the right listing and only 6 flips kill all the power to the structure. To make things easy while covering all possible scenarios I would use a main breaker panel. Main breaker panels cost about the same since they are so frequently used.

Of note, don't worry about the rating of the main in the sense that if its labeled at 125 amps while the indoor breaker and wire is say 60amps. The breaker will just act as a disconnect while the wires are protected by the inside panel.





3) If I replace the panel, I'll need to re-run the wires as mentioned in post 1. Any thoughts on just running the cable between the ground and the deck given that I can't get under there to secure it, or should I just bite the bullet and have it come out the side of the house and either bury it or secure it to the deck in RMC/IMC/EMT/PVC conduit? I'm leaning towards a 40 Amp feeder. I have not had any problems when it was actually protected at 20 amp.

Thanks Guys.
Answers in red.

Under the 2014 you will need 2 hots, neutral and a ground. Burying THHN/THWN in PVC electrical conduit would be the safest and least difficult option. You could secure around the deck in conduit... but not knowing the specifics Im afraid to say yes to that.

Last edited by Jump-start; 10-26-2014 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 10-26-2014, 11:32 PM   #4
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Sub-panel feeder to detached shed


Yes, replacing the sub panel just jumped to the top of my list of things to do around here. I was not happy when I realized what was going on.

I don't anticipate ever needing more than 4 circuits in this area, so yes I can get away with a panel with less than 6 breakers, but for my own sanity and convenience I'll go with a NEMA-3R with main breaker.

Thanks for the info.
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Old 10-27-2014, 12:25 AM   #5
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Sub-panel feeder to detached shed


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Originally Posted by b4bhomeowner View Post
Yes, replacing the sub panel just jumped to the top of my list of things to do around here. I was not happy when I realized what was going on.

I don't anticipate ever needing more than 4 circuits in this area, so yes I can get away with a panel with less than 6 breakers, but for my own sanity and convenience I'll go with a NEMA-3R with main breaker.

Thanks for the info.
Good to know!
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