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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Electric Brewing > 30 amp breaker help
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Old 04-25-2013, 04:30 AM   #11
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Please refer to the diagram prandlesc attached, it is a sound plan. I would suggest calling the utility co and asking them what size service your parents have (you can tell them you are looking at changing insurance companies and they wanted to know....). If it's a 200A service, you could easily up the new feed breaker from 60 (shown in prandlesc's drawing) to even 100A. Just make sure to increase the wire size to match (ie 6AWG for 60A breaker, or 2AWG for 100A). Also make sure to run the wire in conduit of some kind between the panels, especially seeing that it's outdoors.
For what it's worth "green" (designated as ground) is the ONLY color that is considered safe, and that's only if someone wired it correctly (you would be surprised at some of the "add on's" I've found that makes this kind of rule null and void). White (typically designated neutral in residential wiring) can bite, depending on what load is on the circuit!

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Old 04-25-2013, 04:30 AM   #12
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Based on the current info, I agree that adding a sub panel with the new breakers and moving the existing breakers is probably the best course. But, you have to know what else that 100amp breaker feeds to know if you will overloading your service. Also, I can't stress enough how valuable a cheap 120VAC/240VAC multimeter is for something like this. It can save your life, don't "look to see if the lights are off" to be sure that a panel or wire is safe to touch, use a meter across a ground bar/lug and the wire in question. Also, just because code specifies what color wire should be ground/neutral or hot, don't assume that all the previous homeowners or contractors adhered to that code, check with a meter. Your putting your hands in something that could potentially kill you and if your work isn't up to code and par, could kill or injure down the road.

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Old 04-25-2013, 06:00 AM   #13
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Ok here we go, I got some info from my dad and then some pics to help clarify.

The house is a 1945, two wire no ground. Panels are old square d xo and the other is a cutler hammer. The square d panel has mostly the garage and laundry room and the cutler hammer has most of the house circuits.

I'm not sure about the square d panel but the breakers on the cutler hammer go, (top to bottom, left to right) Top - 20, 50, 20, Bottom - 20, 20, 20, 20.

It has long been a joke that whoever decided the routing of the wiring in my parents house was out of their mind. There is no logical reason for how its done haha. If you understood the layout you would all be shaking your heads. Buuuuuut this is what I'm working with and would like to make it work if at all possible.

Thank you all so much for your help.

panel1.jpg   panel2.jpg  
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:06 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaz View Post
Based on the current info, I agree that adding a sub panel with the new breakers and moving the existing breakers is probably the best course. But, you have to know what else that 100amp breaker feeds to know if you will overloading your service. Also, I can't stress enough how valuable a cheap 120VAC/240VAC multimeter is for something like this. It can save your life, don't "look to see if the lights are off" to be sure that a panel or wire is safe to touch, use a meter across a ground bar/lug and the wire in question. Also, just because code specifies what color wire should be ground/neutral or hot, don't assume that all the previous homeowners or contractors adhered to that code, check with a meter. Your putting your hands in something that could potentially kill you and if your work isn't up to code and par, could kill or injure down the road.
Don't worry I hate being shocked more than anything...I don't mess around with electricity. I have a multimeter and use it every time I'm working with electricity. I have a very healthy fear .
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:46 AM   #15
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Man if you think your qiring is bad you shoild see the place I am in.

Either way, load wise I think you wshould be sound in being able to add a sub panel as described by other posts. I would recommend transfering all the circuits in your main panel to it as recommended by others as well. Size your wire feeding your new sub panel accordingly.

you don't NEED to rin conduit to your new sub panel as mentioned by another, but ot would be woth good intention to do so. If you don't, a couple 2" two screw connectors and a large (thinking #6) 4 wire feeder cable would suit the purpose.

I would highly recommend the sub panel, but its ypur parents hpuse and they get to make the decisions.

Good luck dude.

Ps. This is written on my phone so please done mind the spelling errors

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Old 04-25-2013, 07:42 PM   #16
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Ok good deal, sounds like the general consensus is the sub panel.

Based on the diagram I put this sub panel right next to the main, move the 20 and 30 amp over to the new panel and put a 60 in their place to feed it. Now I need gfci protection for electric brewing so would it be best to add the gfci breaker in the new sub panel, run my wiring out to the garage and into a conduit box with a 4 prong 240 outlet?

My control panel will be 30amps so I would want to match my gfci breaker to that correct?

Thanks prandle for the diagram btw! Here's a little expanded one I did.

wiring_diagram.jpg  
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Old 04-26-2013, 01:16 AM   #17
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Neutral (grounded conductor) and Ground (grounding conductor)are connected at the main panel and NOT connected at any subpanels by code. The second statement is nonsense, IMO.

?????? Isn't it obvious that 100amp breaker feeds a subpanel that services the rest of the house? Of course he needs it.

(I was talking about in the new box/subpanel)

That would not only be against NEC code but would be dangerous. Feeding two sub-panels with one breaker is a BAD idea.

(who cares about code really? unless your a paid contractor... and there is nothing dangerous about it, what's the difference if it's feeding another box? the "danger" is a matter of opinion)

IMO, the cleanest solution would be to add a sub-panel next to the one in the photo, like prandlesc recommended. Move the existing 20A/120V and 30A/240V circuits to the new sub-panel and install a new breaker in the main panel to feed that new sub-panel.
(I don't disagree with this)

Anyway I didn't get into this to debate or argue anything... just giving my opinion on the matter. If he was looking for professional help, I'm sure he could have called a contractor.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:58 PM   #18
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Quote:
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...(who cares about code really? unless your a paid contractor... and there is nothing dangerous about it, what's the difference if it's feeding another box? the "danger" is a matter of opinion)
On a fundamental level, the National Electrical Code (NEC) exists to protect life and property from dangerous electrical practices. Feeding two sub-panels from the same 100amp breaker in the main panel by "double lugging" IS dangerous. This is not a matter of opinion but a well accepted fact. The lugs on circuit breakers are not designed to accept more than one conductor. Inserting two conductors can easily lead to overheating of the connection, which can easily lead to fire.

Not trying to be an a$$hole and I'm certainly not an expert on the NEC but I am very acquainted with standard practices of electrical work. Every now and then I read some questionable electrical advice on HBT and try to respond in a way to clears up the confusion and makes everyone safer.
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:24 AM   #19
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I see your point, it's just that my logic says is there is no difference. If you had two wires that together, were equal to a larger single wire that doesn't exceed the limit of the lug...what's the problem?

But I do understand about double lugging the 100 amp switch.
I don't think I posted exactly what I meant to say. I live in an OLD crappy trailer no less, and had to do some gas to electric conversions.
Doubling the main and NEC aside, I had to do what I had to do. The existing panel is an old fuse type. I added a sub panel I got from a volunteer firefighter friend. I used the jumpers, but where I double lugged it is on the inlet side where the power comes from the pole. I only added two switches, one to handle the dryer and furnace, and another to handle water heater and the kitchen stove. Everything has been functioning perfectly and safely for a year or so now.

I do appreciate your taking the time to rationally work this out and respect your knowledge and willingness to share with others.

Thanks

2013-04-26_18.15.47.jpg   2013-04-26_18.16.00.jpg  
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:29 AM   #20
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in the lower pic, the red w black stripe is from the pole, the red is going to the the other box...same with the black w white stripe and the black...etc...

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