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Old 08-02-2009, 08:12 AM   #16
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In my opinion, I would replace that Federal Pacific panel and go ahead and upgrade to 200 A with a new meter/main. If he can do that for $2000, then you are getting a deal. But still get other estimates.
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Old 08-02-2009, 08:52 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williamj001 View Post
You really shouldn't assume anything. Not every electrician is an honest one. And with what he was saying his loads were in his panel 200amps seems overkill.
I agree with Inphase. The fact that it is an FPE is already enough reason to change it.
If he did change it would you recommend replacing it with 100A???
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Old 08-02-2009, 08:57 AM   #18
 
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If money was a problem for him yes i most definately would. If it is already 100amps and he does not NEED more than that why would you want to gouge a customer for more money then he needs to pay for? I admit there are alot of underlying circumstances that could warrant an upgrade to 200amps such as his location, his potential for additions but without knowing that, how can you even say that he NEEDs 200amps?
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Old 08-02-2009, 09:26 AM   #19
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Unless its a smaller house most people upgrade to 200a without a 2nd thought
If $$ is a problem then the upgrade is not done
My last house was 912 sq ft, 100a & had gas stove, cooking, HW, dryer & heat
But I would have upgrade to 200a in second
It adds value to the house on resale

When we looked for a new house I was checking out the electric panels to see if they had 200a AND the Mfg of the panel
If it was a Fed PC panel or less then 200a my offer would be reduced or I'd pass on the house

It only takes one 50a hot tub to overload a 100a service
I have (2) outside plus a jacuzzi tub in the house



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Old 08-02-2009, 09:33 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williamj001 View Post
If money was a problem for him yes i most definately would. If it is already 100amps and he does not NEED more than that why would you want to gouge a customer for more money then he needs to pay for?
Gouge the customer by recommending a 200A upgrade??? What world are you living in. Certainly not the real world.
Are you even in business?


Here is the answer:
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Originally Posted by Scuba_Dave View Post
Unless its a smaller house most people upgrade to 200a without a 2nd thought
If $$ is a problem then the upgrade is not done
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:03 AM   #21
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Federal panels lost there UL listing because alot of the breakers didn't trip and caused a lot of fires. IMO I would replace the panel.
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:26 AM   #22
 
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Ok back to the original issue at hand:

I had a washer/dryer stackable unit that died, so I bought a new one. Ergo, this was already running on existing panel.

The plug on the new washer/dryer unit was too large to fit into existing outlet, but not by much.

The panel is @ 20 years old but is there any reason why I simply cannot get a new outlet without replacing the whole !#$%^%% panel?

Money is VERY tight for me - I may just end up returning the washer/dryer and just going to laundromat and to heck with the panel.

I live in an attached condo and I am willing to bet that maybe 1 out of 10 units replaced their panels...

so even if I replaced the panel, my condo could still get torched because some other dip didn't replace theirs.

Needless to say I am going to condo association and find out what the deal is - they are always after us to clean dryer vent, fireplace et al, but have to yet to hear anything about replacing the Holy Golden Federal Pacific electric panel.
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:32 AM   #23
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OK then.

The size of the receptacle doe not matter, exactly.
Was the old unit electric? Is so then the new unit CAN be used right in it's place.

If the old unit was also electric, was the old cord 3-prong and new one 4-prong? If so then the electrician was a putz.

Also, upgrading a service in a condo is a different story entirely. That would have been good to know from the start.
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:38 AM   #24
 
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Old washer/dryer was electric
New washer/dryer electric

Old plug was 3-prong
New plug is 3-prong, just larger by about maybe 1/2" all around.

Sorry I didn't mention this was condo but since I am a layman, not a handyman I don't know what is relevant.

Thanks everyone for your input; it's much appreciated.
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:40 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panipinky View Post
Old plug was 3-prong
New plug is 3-prong, just larger by about maybe 1/2" all around.
OK, again, the physical size is not really relevant. Did it plug in, I assume not.

What size breaker was the old unit on? And was it a double breaker, or single?
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Old 08-02-2009, 11:34 AM   #26
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Yeah, Condo - much harder to upgrade service, probably not needed
I'd think 125a would be enough to power everything
You don't have electric heat do you?

Are there cement walls that the electrician has to go thru to run a new line?

Do you need a stackable unit - spacewise?
Is there gas there for a gas dryer?



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Old 08-02-2009, 11:39 AM   #27
 
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Gas heat
Electric dryer
Drywall

Yes, need stackable unit - utility contains A/C, gas heat, water heater.. very tight for space.

Breaker size - where would i go to see that

Sorry to be such a dummy
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Old 08-02-2009, 05:19 PM   #28
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Don't beat yourself up so much. We can walk through this now.

Can you take a picture of the old outlet, with something next to it for reference, such as a yard stick or ruler? We need to figure out what the NEMA rating of it is.

Next, a snapshot of the new cord and its end would be good -- again, with something next to it for reference.

Click here for a NEMA chart.

Once we figure out your proper NEMA number, and compare it to the wire size in your circuit, it may be a simple matter of changing out the device itself.

I am wondering if your old outlet is a NEMA 10-30R, and the new plug is a NEMA 14-30P ?
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Old 08-02-2009, 05:51 PM   #29
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On the permitting side, at least here in Louisville, we virtually never see new construction (single family) with anything less than 200A. We see lots and lots of upgrades to 200A on older homes. 200A seems the standard minimum for upgrades or new construction, at least here. I wouldn't think it was out of line for an electrician to recommend 200A for a panel replacement.
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Old 08-02-2009, 06:11 PM   #30
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Dilemma? of replacing (entire) panel!


Quote:
Originally Posted by panipinky View Post
Panel is Federal Pacific
125 amp 120/240 V A.C.
1 phase 3 wires
Type 1 enclosure

is that the info you are looking for?

Other appliances are fridge, dishwasher. Stove is gas

The washer/dryer unit is Kenmore 240 v.
If you notice. Every electrician expresses a cringing motion when they hear the name of the panel & breakers. You shouldn't hesitate for a moment about replacing this (Federal Pacific Electric) Active fire hazard in your house. It defies logic why the Government (On both, State and Federal level) permits this situation to go on. The theory, supposedly is that the breakers (finally) DO trip when there is a short circuit. By that time the house is burning. It's sad, though, that a name that was most popular, a mere 25-30 years ago should turn out to be so DANGEROUS. Among the articles that I've read about this brand, is that they, at some point took a shortcut in the manufacturing process and were less than candid with the Underwriters Laboratories when they submitted samples for testing! (No matter what)Don't Drink and Drive!!!
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