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Old 04-26-2009, 12:51 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by micromind View Post
It seems to me as though the code-compliant methods result in a slightly more hazardous installation. Is it possible that blind compliance with written rules and regulations isn't always the best possible way?!??

This is just one example of where rigid enforcement of the code results in increased hazard, there are others as well.

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I agree with you. Rigid enforcement without regard to intent is the worst possible way to go about any sort of public safety. It applies to police as well as code inspectors. I don't have a code book in front of me, and it has been awhile, but I have read the section on USE cable. Seems to me that the intent was to prevent the cable from being used for general branch circuit wiring purposes, such as from a panel to an A/C unit. I see no real harm in running URD cable in conduit inside a building to a panel for service.

So, can you run URD inside a building for a branch circuit? No. But what is the harm with it being in conduit from overhead or underground directly to a service panel?
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Old 04-27-2009, 08:31 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by InPhase277 View Post
Rigid enforcement without regard to intent is the worst possible way to go about any sort of public safety.
Whereas I agree 100% that there is pretty much no hazard in doing what you describe, I have to disagree with the above statement.

People are litigious these days. So are insurance companies. So are attorneys. The sad fact is that the inspector has the responsibility of protecting the enforcement jurisdiction from having their bare butt exposed in litigation. I've been deposed before and I assure you that it isn't fun. Judges and attorneys have no interest in the intent of the code or an inspector's thoughts on the intent...They're only interested in what the code says. Even though the ICC and NFPA publish handbooks that describe the intent, they're not binding documents (contractors are often quick to point that out when it works in their favor). Aside from the enforcement jurisdiction's potential liability, the inspector can be held personally liable if the plaintiff can prove negligence.

I'll be the first to admit that I give quite a bit of leniency where I see fit. Rigid enforcement is often impractical and unrealistic. I don't see this as one of those circumstances because there's just no realistic reason that someone would need to use USE cable for the described application. When there's a better alternative there's no reason to violate code and come up with reasons that it should be ok. When there is no practical way to do it 100% code-compliant...That's where rigid enforcement needs to relax.
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Old 05-01-2009, 10:45 AM   #18
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Ok, so I finally got an answer to my question from the State Inspector:

URD is a utility cable and not recognized in the National Electrical Code (NEC). It cannot be installed inside a building in any case.
The service or feeder disconnect required at each building must be installed in a readily accessible location either outside the building or structure or inside nearest the point of entrance of the conductors. If the service panel is located on an interior wall of the house, it will usually require that a disconnect be located on the outside of the structure. After the disconnect, the wiring method to the interior service panel can be a jacketed SER-type cable or conduit with individual wires.

I wanted to get your opinions on what this actually means. If I understand it correctly, I will have a disconnect at the pole (there is a 200A breaker in that panel), another one at the wall to terminate the URD cable, then switch to SER or individual wires in conduit to the panel.

Thanks
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Old 05-01-2009, 10:49 AM   #19
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If you have a 200 amp breaker at the pole, you would not need to add a disconnect, but you need to put one on the building, then go with the ser into the panel.
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Old 05-01-2009, 10:49 AM   #20
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Which is exactly how I told you to do it in my original post.
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Old 05-01-2009, 01:14 PM   #21
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That extra disconnect at the wall is something that I would have liked to avoid if I could help it. It's in a bedroom and with ICF walls, I'm not sure how I am going to cover it up.

I guess my thinking is that turning the breaker off at the meter shuts off the power to the house. The barn has its own separate service meter.
So I personally don't see the need for that additional disconnect at the wall. I was thinking that I could have used a dual listed type cable or something or other like that and make it all the way to the panel.

It was the use of URD that concerned me, but I've found out that what they call URD is in fact USE listed cable, and the electric supplier has does combination type cable. The inspector said it is like calling tissues kleenexes.

Inspector says that because of 225.32 that the disconnect needs to be right on the exterior wall. To me 225.32 says either inside or outside of the house OR at the point where it enters the building and that it needs to be nearest the point of entry. It does not specify an x distance and what is considered "nearest." My panel is nearest the point of entry, compared to my pole, but I'm not sure that arguing with the inspector is a good idea.
Thanks for the great help.

As an aside, if I ever in the future wanted to utilize a generator to power some circuits in my house, is there something I need to be thinking about now? Someone mentioned using a meter base with a plug in, but I have no option as to what meter base is used since the co-op only allows what they use.

Thanks for all the great help. Bob, you were right.
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Old 05-02-2009, 01:48 AM   #22
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Quote:
As an aside, if I ever in the future wanted to utilize a generator to power some circuits in my house, is there something I need to be thinking about now? Someone mentioned using a meter base with a plug in, but I have no option as to what meter base is used since the co-op only allows what they use.
I wouldn't worry about it on the service level. Most people go with either a backfeed with a main interlock, a subpanel, or a separate switch that takes over a small number of circuits.

Some people do use service level generator inlets, but that means you have to go turn off all the big loads manually every time, so it's not even that great, compared to the alternatives.

Last edited by Gigs; 05-02-2009 at 01:50 AM.
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Old 10-19-2010, 11:14 AM   #23
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Urd


Seems to me while use is part of urd they are not the same. What does the code say about running URD indoors. Cant find anything on it myself.
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Old 10-19-2010, 06:26 PM   #24
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URD is not mentioned in the Code at all.

"URD" stands for Underground Residential Distribution, which usually consists of 3 or more type USE conductors.
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