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Old 05-20-2008, 09:59 AM   #1
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


I saw variations of this question several times on here, and after reading all the answers, it still doesn't seem clear.

In my case, I have 200amp service at the pole at the county road. The transformer is on top of a 20' pole, and the meter is approximately 4 1/2 feet off the ground.

Currently, so you will know why the meter is already on the pole, I am now living in my trailer. Below the meter I have a 30amp outlet on the pole that I plug in a 30amp 100' extension cord which runs to my travel trailer, the kind you purchase at any RV supply store.

Now I have just recently staked out where I want to build my house. This will be a 2 bedroom house with refrigerator, washer, dryer, a window air conditioner or two, and two ceiling fans plus lighting, television, and computer. I will use propane for heating and cooking, and hope to install a on demand water heater, also powered by propane.

The closest corner of the house layout is exactly 282 feet from the pole base. (20 more feet to transformer?) I have a desire to go underground to the house, i.e., no more poles. Is there anything I should do more than a normal installation? Should I consider a larger sized copper wire for the 282 feet than what I would use if the transformer was 40 feet away? Maybe go up one in size?

After talking with a friend who has worked as an electrician helper, he said that wasn't far enough away to worry about. I accepted that until now, but after reading some of the responses here, I want to question his response with fully trained electricians or more experienced diy's.

Suggestions or thoughts?

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Old 05-20-2008, 04:51 PM   #2
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


I HAVE ALMOST THE EXACT SAME SENARIO.

I just bought some property and the 100 amp service is set up with the 30 amp plug on an existing pole. (previous owner had a trailer too). I am building a cabin 350 lf from the service. I will tell you what I have learned....

I met with my electrical co op. He said they don't really care what I do after the meter but suggested that I run #2 wire to the cabin but I would have substantial voltage drop but should be enough for a hunting cabin Or I could upgrade to a 200 amp service and run 4/0 wire to the cabin. (I'm thinking, yea I trust you buddy) Then I had the guy at the supplier (owend by the co-op) tell me to keep the 100 amp service and run 4/0 to the cabin. I said, I thought that 4/0 wont work with the lugs in 100 amp panel. He said they make an adaptor that will work. So I don't know who to believe/trust..

I'm giving up and hiring the wiring done. I don't want to spend 2.50 a foot for 4/0 wire and then have it be wrong. ($2.50 x350'= $875.00)

Good luck with your problem, If you allready have the 200 amp service it sounds like you need to run 4/0 wire. But please check with an electrician and don't take my word for it, I'm confused.

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Old 05-20-2008, 08:32 PM   #3
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


Farmer for 100 amp service at 240 volts single phase, and a distance of 290 feet you would need 4/0 aluminum or 3/0 copper to stay within the 2% voltage drop spec.

Medina in your case you would need to use 4/0 copper or 250mcm aluminum wire. This is for a 100 amp service.
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Old 05-20-2008, 08:44 PM   #4
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


Hey Farmer..Why the post?

You need to talk to a local electrical contractor. You cannot do the job yourself.

For what it's worth, I'm a master electrician, I've been working in an industrial complex for 30+ years, Would I do a residential service myself? nope, that stuff is for the "pros"

give 'em a call.

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Old 05-20-2008, 08:44 PM   #5
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


Twister, WHERE are you getting these numbers from?????

VD is NOT a "spec". It is a suggestion. And the drop numbers are 3% & 5%. Not 2%.
Also, how can you suggest wire size based on voltage drop when you do not even know the calculated or actual load?
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Old 05-20-2008, 08:48 PM   #6
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


Farmer, 282' is just beyond the recommended distance of 250' for a secondary voltage service.
I would either go with a primary service with a pad mount transformer near(er) the house, or go up ONE size in the underground lateral.
This would be 250mcm AL, or 3/0CU
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Old 05-21-2008, 09:53 AM   #7
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


For what it's worth, the max. the POCO wants in my area is 300 feet.
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Old 05-21-2008, 06:40 PM   #8
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


Petey, My numbers come from a computer program by Robert J LaCapra called Electric Calc. The numbers are based on a 100 amp load as stated in my post and I cant explain the difference in our numbers on the aluminum wire, but the copper is the same, so if my number is wrong I am not alone. I agree that VD is a suggestion, but if I use the word suggestion around here most people ignore the suggestion and wind up putting it in wrong anyhow.
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Old 05-25-2008, 12:13 PM   #9
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


Where I live POCO would be responsible for this latteral. We just install the meter can and they do the rest. Since you are building a new house have you discussed the latteral with them. Remember they are going to get their money back hundreds of times over.
The only time POCO will not install the feeder or latteral is if it is not a dwelling unit.
There are cases of very long distances that the POCO will add a surcharge for the installation. Call them and see if you can work something out.
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Old 05-25-2008, 07:38 PM   #10
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Yet another distance from Pole and meter to house question


UrbanFarmer

when you have your Architect start on your house plans . .have him get the EE he uses to spec out whats needed electrcially . . .when this goes through permit process go with their recommendations . . .which no doubt will include using LESS than max distances

costs will determine a great deal

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