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Old 01-11-2013, 12:21 AM   #21
Oct 2012
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Posts: 344
Liked 6 Times on 4 Posts

Originally Posted by MadGus View Post
Spa panel houses the GFCI breaker. Usually cheaper than a GFCI breaker for your main service panel.

You need GFCI somewhere on the way to your control panel (even if just inline power cord, like Kal's setup).
Right but regardless I'd need a breaker (non GFCI in the main panel) I am sure this was discusses somewhere in these long posts.

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Old 01-11-2013, 12:37 AM   #22
MadGus's Avatar
Dec 2008
Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 133
Liked 5 Times on 4 Posts

You absolutely need a breaker in the panel, and could choose to make that breaker your single GFCI for the whole system... for me, it was cheaper to buy a spa panel with 50A GFCI breaker, a regular 50A non-GFCI breaker for my panel, and 15 feet of 6/4 wire, than to buy a 30A GFCI breaker for the panel by itself and 15 feet of 10/4 wire. I still don't understand why the pricing works like that, but it ended up giving me future expansion flexibility for my 5500W system.

Primary: Liberal Wheat 5.14
Secondary: Air
Bottle Conditioning: Gingerbread Stout 12.13
Kegged: IPA 3.14, Gluten Free Dos-Equis Clone 1.14
Commercial Tap: Legend Brown Ale
In Bottles: Hopslam, eSCB Holiday Ale 8.13

On Deck: Bourbon Cru 6.14

Gallons in 2014: 33

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Old 01-14-2015, 08:04 PM   #23
lextasy23's Avatar
Jan 2011
Dirty Water
Posts: 368
Liked 45 Times on 32 Posts

So I wanted to throw this out there, and have a pro take a look at it.

My questions are:

A) With 2 5500w elements @ 240v - I'm looking at roughly 44 amps combined. With both chuggers, a total of 47. Call it 50 with the vent fan and some lights. The rule of thumb is add 25% to get breaker value, right? 62.5... Is a 60 amp spa panel going to cut it, or will I be spiking it and potentially be shut off?

2) If I have the spa panel - more breakers seems excessive. I get redundancy, but is is really necessary? Does this make it safer somehow? Everyone seems to suggest having breakers directly in the panel.

D) Is there any limit on distance from the spa panel? Like, if my main panel is in the basement and this is going in the garage, does it matter if the sub panel is in the basement or garage? Simplicity for reset suggests to put it in the garage, but do I have to have it a certain distance from the main panel instead?

Schematic JPG:

PDFs attached:

The panel I designed. I already own the panel and just about every component. I'm having the cover cut out with a waterjet so I don't have to drill and dremel 9 million holes.

The schematic. It's not the prettiest thing in the world. I used Microsoft Visio basically because it's all I have. Curious if there's any good freeware schematic software out there. I'm always doing diagrams for DC automotive applications. It'd be nice to have a better software. Thigs may look crammed but the schematic is loosely based on where components will physically sit - to make wiring day possibly a tad easier.

Thanks guys.
File Type: pdf Brew Panel v5.pdf (158.6 KB, 68 views)
File Type: pdf Brew Panel v5 - WIRING.pdf (133.5 KB, 81 views)
MYTAPDISPLAY.COM | See my Electronic Tap Display Project!
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Old 01-14-2015, 11:37 PM   #24
jeffmeh's Avatar
Feb 2009
Posts: 2,161
Liked 212 Times on 182 Posts

IANAE (I am not an electrician), but my understanding is that the 25% rule applies to continuous loads of 3 hours or more, and an SSR switching on and off does not qualify. I would think 60a would be plenty.

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