DIY Home Improvement Forum banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm getting ready to wire a 40'x60' pole barn with a 24'x36' lean-to that will be used as living quarters. My question is will one 200 amp service panel work or do I need to put in a sub panel for the barn? Living quarters will be 3 bedrooms, laundry room, living room and kitchen. Barn will need around 5 20 amp circuits.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
21,793 Posts
Without knowing all the loads, it's hard say if 200 amp panel is enough. Probably, but a proper demand load calculation will confirm it.
There is no requirement to have a separate sub panel in the barn but it could be useful to keep barn workers out of the living quarters if there are issues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
760 Posts
You don't necessarily need a sub panel, but sometimes with larger structures it's more cost effective and/or easier to install a small sub panel rather than run numerous circuits all the way back to the main panel. Depends mostly on the layout of the building, where the main panel is located in relation to where you want the circuits.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for all the replies. Total load is about 165 amps. No real savings with sub panel as they would be close together due to layout. I guess I was mainly concerned with if it was required
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
14,494 Posts
How did you determine 165 amps?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,841 Posts
How did you determine 165 amps?
Yea, is that the current for everything running at once?
I have a 1700 square foot house with 200 A service. From that is a 100 A sub panel in the 1800 square foot barn. Both have AC. Lots of lights, welder, lift, compressor, etc. Never a shortage of power.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,346 Posts
Have you done a load analysis (sample rules at the back of the NEC manual)?

Now, nothing forbids designing your wiring project to have more ampacity in subpanels, branch circuits, etc. if you have had or actually expect to have certain combinations of things running all at once.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
14,297 Posts
Question I have, is who would want to live in a lean-to that against a barn?
If everyone liked the same thing, wouldn't this be a boring world. I don't see a problem with it. Different strokes for different folks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,856 Posts
You don't necessarily need a sub panel, but sometimes with larger structures it's more cost effective and/or easier to install a small sub panel rather than run numerous circuits all the way back to the main panel. Depends mostly on the layout of the building, where the main panel is located in relation to where you want the circuits.
You cannot run multiple circuits from the main panel to the structure. You can only run one circuit and in this case he needs a sub panel.
Also does the living quarters have a kitchen or cooking area?
Rules change from structure to dwelling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
760 Posts
You cannot run multiple circuits from the main panel to the structure. You can only run one circuit and in this case he needs a sub panel.
Also does the living quarters have a kitchen or cooking area?
Rules change from structure to dwelling.

Even though the building is all one common structure? Doesn't seem that it's any different than a house with a large attached garage. I'd wire a sub panel anyway because it's likely going to be easier.

When a friend and I wired his 50x100 we set the main panel on a center dividing wall. The building also has an office, restroom, utility area in the far corner. It was more convenient and about even cost to install a sub panel in the office area. The alternative would have required 80 plus feet of wire up the wall across the ceiling and down to the main panel for each circuit in the office.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Hello everyone, I did not do a load analysis yet and am going off what the owner has told me (kinda got thrown into this), but am sure they have figured in for things in the future (in the barn). Was also told don't need to have a sub panel, but maybe to be safe I should. Living quarters will have a kitchen. The layout of this building would be easier to put the main in the barn and the sub in the living quarters if I have to go that route. What issues, if any would this cause? This is in Kansas by the way
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
21,793 Posts
Sub panel is not required by any codes. It is your choice for convenience or to keep cable runs lengths shorter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,346 Posts
The location of the service panel (the real "main" panel and containing the first whole-building disconnecting switch or breaker) has some limitations depending on how the service drop (from the utility pole) and service conductors (from the meter to said panel) can be best run.

From there, running the rest of the wiring within the building is your choice.

You could take into account convenience in going to a panel in case a breaker trips.

Running multiple cables even along much the same route among the rafters of a pole barn would be no different than running multiple cables in the ceiling and/or up a stud bay of a house.

This would not apply to the subject pole barn here but for a somewhat larger building, voltage drop issues might be better handled with strategically located subpanels rather than individual branch circuits all coming from one panel. Each branch circuit must be sized to take into account voltage drop whereas only the feed cable (...s back to the main panel plus the longest branch circuit from the subject subpanel) need to enter into a voltage drop calculation up to that subpanel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,856 Posts
I'm getting ready to wire a 40'x60' pole barn with a 24'x36' lean-to that will be used as living quarters. My question is will one 200 amp service panel work or do I need to put in a sub panel for the barn? Living quarters will be 3 bedrooms, laundry room, living room and kitchen. Barn will need around 5 20 amp circuits.
Sorry. I misread your post. When you said pole barn without clarification, I naturally assumed you were unattached.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
9,263 Posts
Hello everyone, I did not do a load analysis yet and am going off what the owner has told me (kinda got thrown into this), but am sure they have figured in for things in the future (in the barn). Was also told don't need to have a sub panel, but maybe to be safe I should. Living quarters will have a kitchen. The layout of this building would be easier to put the main in the barn and the sub in the living quarters if I have to go that route. What issues, if any would this cause? This is in Kansas by the way
Are you planning on wiring this for someone else?
Are you qualified to do wiring in your state?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
It's kind of a long story how I got involved, but I am not the owner or licensed either. The work can be done by the homeowner (I'm going to help her with the heavy lifting, so to speak) and then a licensed electrician will make connections at the panels and buy off on it and you're good to go. That's the way it is up here in the more rural areas. I'm just trying to avoid any problems down the road. The main problem is the meter is on a pole around 75' from the barn and the living quarters are about 40' from the entrance to the barn, neither being an easy path. It's a 3 lug meter with a 200 amp breaker. I'm thinking that makes everything after the meter a sub panel but the POCO says it's up to the homeowner, they've seen it either way.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top