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Old 04-06-2019, 04:24 PM   #1
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Whole Home Surge Suppressor


I'm looking to add a whole home surge suppressor to our main panel. My quandary is where to mount it. I have to add a 50 amp double pole breaker to the panel and then connect the surge suppressor to that and the ground/neutral bar.

According to the install instructions, they want the 50 amp breaker installed as close to the main breaker as possible. I believe that is because they want the surge suppressor to be the shortest path to ground than any other load in the panel. Everything else serviced by the panel is much further away than the surge suppressor will be, so can I really just put that 50 amp breaker anywhere in the panel?

I originally wanted to mount the surge suppressor inside the panel, to the upper right corner, with the 50 amp breaker in the upper right slot (would have to move a couple of breakers elsewhere). However, it won't quite fit, without lopping off a mounting tab from the suppressor. There is nothing to secure it to there either, without trying to make some custom bracket for it. The surge suppressor is indoor/outdoor rated, so I can mount it on the outside of the panel. There are no knockouts on the sides of the panel, but there are on the bottom. It certainly would be easiest to add the breaker to the bottom slot, close to the surge suppressor. The wires of the surge suppressor are only 14" long.

So, which is the best option?

  1. Cram it in the upper right of the panel
  2. Drill a hole in the side of the panel to mount the surge suppressor
  3. Use a knockout on the bottom to mount the surge suppressor
  4. Other?




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Old 04-06-2019, 04:53 PM   #2
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


I don't know about locating what you have.
I don't mess with electrical boxes.
If I had one, I would hire an electrician and follow his guidance.


It looks like your breaker box has all the units occupied.
But, is it too late to consider something like this?
It mounts in place of a fuse.


https://www.schneider-electric.us/en...small-business
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Old 04-06-2019, 05:04 PM   #3
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


#3. You do not want any hole on the side of the panel above the buss bars. Don't worry about distance from the main. Do NOT install it within the panel.
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Old 04-06-2019, 05:22 PM   #4
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


Quote:
Originally Posted by DallasCowboys View Post
It looks like your breaker box has all the units occupied.
But, is it too late to consider something like this?
It mounts in place of a fuse.

https://www.schneider-electric.us/en...small-business
There are slots for more breakers below the current ones (see below).

The ones that fit in place of a breaker didn't seem to have the suppression capacity or warranty that this type of unit has. You would also have to find one of those that would be compatible with your specific brand of panel.


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Old 04-06-2019, 05:27 PM   #5
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


Quote:
Originally Posted by LawnGuyLandSparky View Post
#3. You do not want any hole on the side of the panel above the buss bars. Don't worry about distance from the main. Do NOT install it within the panel.
That was pretty much what I was figuring. A bottom mount would certainly be the easiest option.
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Old 04-07-2019, 05:03 AM   #6
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


Here in Florida you can get the POCO to install a Whole House Surge Protector in the power meter base. We did it in our previous house, FP&L, and our current house, SECO.
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Old 04-07-2019, 04:30 PM   #7
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


You may want to consider a higher quality surge protector than that one. Like stated above, you may place that any where. Do not install that inside the panel. The one that you have will do nothing to help protect the over or under current. It will only protect the over voltage, and it does not do a good job at that. Purchase a high quality one like this one from SquareD
https://www.schneider-electric.us/en...ebreaker-plus/


I have four of them, one at each of the 200 amp panels in my house.

Just a note, if you read the directions, the document will state that to make the device fully effective the breaker must be in position 1 & 3 or 2 & 4. Does no good at all if the surge protector is at the bottom of the row. Think about that. The surge, or decline in power has then already touched every row above it.


Andrew
Handy Andy In Mt Airy NC
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Old 04-07-2019, 06:12 PM   #8
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


Quote:
Originally Posted by HandyAndyInNC View Post
You may want to consider a higher quality surge protector than that one. Like stated above, you may place that any where. Do not install that inside the panel. The one that you have will do nothing to help protect the over or under current. It will only protect the over voltage, and it does not do a good job at that. Purchase a high quality one like this one from SquareD
https://www.schneider-electric.us/en...ebreaker-plus/
Curious as to what you are basing those opinions on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HandyAndyInNC View Post
Does no good at all if the surge protector is at the bottom of the row. Think about that. The surge, or decline in power has then already touched every row above it.
I would like to put the breaker at the top of the row, unfortunately, the only place to mount a surge suppressor is one of the knockouts on the bottom of the panel. To wire to a breaker at the top of the row, the black and red wires would have to be extended as they are only 14" long. All of these surge suppressors I have seen state to keep the wires as short as possible.
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Old 04-08-2019, 12:50 AM   #9
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Re: Whole Home Surge Suppressor


Quote:
Originally Posted by HandyAndyInNC View Post
Just a note, if you read the directions, the document will state that to make the device fully effective the breaker must be in position 1 & 3 or 2 & 4. Does no good at all if the surge protector is at the bottom of the row. Think about that. The surge, or decline in power has then already touched every row above it.
Actually, the manufacturer instructions for this surge suppressor indicate to install the breaker nearest to the install location of the surge suppressor. It says nothing about that being closest to the main breaker. So, in the end, I followed the manufacturer's instructions.

http://www.eaton.com/ecm/groups/publ...b00414001y.pdf

As for Square D vs. Eaton, I saw lots of positive info and reviews on both units. This article was the best comparison that I had found and it helped me decide to go for the Eaton.
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