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Old 10-31-2013, 11:35 PM   #1
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Thin breaker questions


Hello all. I have been told that for a crowded circuit breaker box I can use thin breakers. They look about half as thin as a standard breaker. Does this mean I can fit two skinny ones in one slot? If so how do I document this on the breaker list? For example is it #12 A for bedroom lights and #12B for bedroom outlets? Are there any disadvantages to these thinner breakers?

Thanks for all help.

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Old 11-01-2013, 12:39 AM   #2
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Yes two thin breakers will fit into one slot. You are correct on the labels. Some panels show that type of numbering on the chart. I don't know about any disadvantages, maybe someone else will post a reply on that.

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Old 11-01-2013, 12:40 AM   #3
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It depends on your panel. Some GE panels take the half size breakers. Other panel makers sell tandems (2 breakers in a 1 inch case).

How many of them are allowed in a panel depends on the panel. The number of breakers permitted should be on the labeling inside the panel.

If you can't find it, post the make and model number of your panel.
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Old 11-01-2013, 07:00 AM   #4
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More common to see 15 amp. on lighting circuits and 20 on the outlets.
You need to look to see what sized wiring it is.
15 amp. = 14 gauge wire.
20 amp. = 12 gauge wire.
If you where to use a 20 amp. breaker on a 14 gauge wire the wire becomes the weakest link and can melt and catch fire if there's a problem in the line.
To many times I've seen where someone changes the breaker to a higher amperage when it keeps tripping. Unfortunately for the home owner it's sometimes after the fire dept. has put out the fire that it's discovered.
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Old 11-01-2013, 07:37 AM   #5
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This is my panel (no sparkies, I'm not finished cleaning up the wiring)



I really don't need that many breakers, but, I'm one of those who likes to segregate my ckts into smaller sections. Makes it easier to troubleshoot....and isolate without shutting down half the house.

A typical 20a breaker 'might' see 20% load....BTA....it could see full load
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Old 11-01-2013, 07:41 AM   #6
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You already have a panel full of tandem breakers.
Chances are slim that you can fit anymore breakers in there.
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Old 11-01-2013, 08:16 AM   #7
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Is that meter main recessed?
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Old 11-01-2013, 08:57 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k_buz
Is that meter main recessed?
My panel? No. I wanted to but it sits on a shear wall so I can only have a couple of small holes. Go to the build link in my signature and you will see how it's finished out.

To the OP....the tandem breakers are actually a 1piece unit that is the width of one standard breaker but has 2 breakers in it.
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Old 11-01-2013, 10:00 AM   #9
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If that is a Homeline RC2040M150 it is a 20 space/40circuit load center. Each space is rated for a two circuit tandem, up to forty total.
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Old 11-01-2013, 10:39 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brric View Post
If that is a Homeline RC2040M150 it is a 20 space/40circuit load center. Each space is rated for a two circuit tandem, up to forty total.
I think I agree with the panel type and capacity. However, if you need AFCI protection, you will not find it in a tandem. AFCI breakers are full size.
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Old 11-01-2013, 10:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Port
I think I agree with the panel type and capacity. However, if you need AFCI protection, you will not find it in a tandem. AFCI breakers are full size.
Correct. I have 3 of them. You can see them in the lower left corner
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Old 11-01-2013, 11:32 AM   #12
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I have been that route you are going 3 times, NEVER AGAIN.....I'll sub it all out next time, if I live that long

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