Load off panel without breaker?
Close
Login to Your Account
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,720
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    673
    Likes (Received)
    685

    Default Load off panel without breaker?

    Another post was commenting on running greater than 60amp 220v 1-P loads off a panel without using a breaker.

    Is this legal? Why would a guy even do this?

    L7

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    St Louis
    Posts
    19,544
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    2476
    Likes (Received)
    3736

    Default

    Tap rule, line terminated at a breaker at load end. Length is limited.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    21,040
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7561
    Likes (Received)
    12302

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    Another post was commenting on running greater than 60amp 220v 1-P loads off a panel without using a breaker.

    Is this legal? Why would a guy even do this?

    L7
    It CAN be. Code has a lot of flexibility innit.

    Sometimes it is even wise. Other times it is legal but risky. Or even wrong as can be, all counts.

    Got's to pay attention.

    If it was EASY even Harry Homeowner could screw it up without the aid of an electrician.

    Go figure.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,720
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    673
    Likes (Received)
    685

    Default

    My understanding of NEC is that primary line even if tapped is still breaker protected at line end. No?

    L7

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    21,040
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7561
    Likes (Received)
    12302

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    My understanding of NEC is that primary line even if tapped is still breaker protected at line end. No?

    L7
    Not enough information.

    NFPA 70's Code is now about 1,000 pages if done dead-tree? And that is not the best way to access it, anyway

    "Online" search by area of interest is the only practical way to go. It will ALSO get you side discussions of the nuances.

    THOSE.. can be more real-world USEFUL, actually. PM isn't even CLOSE to the best forum for 'lectrical power discussions to begin with.

    By comparison? Isolated spot-guessing is nowt but a fast way to get into trouble. Circumstances & overall environment matter, "etc." Nature of the beast.

    Code is about fire and electrocution prevention safety. "Best Current Practice", economy, & clever engineering all bunk in different brothels, one from another, anyway.

    Nearly 70 years at it. I still look it up! Online. Partly because it IS so many years ...and not all old habits are still good ones [1]!

    Inventory your current needs and circumstances. Do the search.
    If still puzzled?

    THEN Ask the grownups.

    But come in their door WITH all the specifics of your situation.
    Not just the narrowest possible slice.

    That don't get answers. All it gets is arguments.

    [1] "Old habits". Time was, it was considered "premium" practice to SOFT SOLDER wires in a box. Field experience then proved that it wasn't, really. Enter wire nuts and screw-terminals. Each of which, in time, also had to be improved. Continue the march.. etc.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    St Louis
    Posts
    19,544
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    2476
    Likes (Received)
    3736

    Default

    A "tap", used in certain circumstances, with lower rated wire, but with a protector at the LOAD end, is legal in NEC. Look it up.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Missoula Mt
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    62
    Likes (Received)
    710

    Default

    It can be done, if done right but why? just add a 60 amp breaker and bring 240 over to a sub panel and call it a day...Phil

  8. Likes lucky7 liked this post
  9. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Eureka, CA
    Posts
    4,448
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1061
    Likes (Received)
    1812

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post
    A "tap", used in certain circumstances, with lower rated wire, but with a protector at the LOAD end, is legal in NEC. Look it up.
    How do you connect the tap with no disconnect device on the line side...or are you switching the main breaker off and 'tapping' your new load off of that?

    Stuart

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    21,040
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7561
    Likes (Received)
    12302

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Montana View Post
    It can be done, if done right but why? just add a 60 amp breaker and bring 240 over to a sub panel and call it a day...Phil
    "Why" is human nature.

    There is never enough time to plan as you go, work cleanly, STAY clean, add sub load centers early, conveniently and bought cheaply.

    There is always enough time to spend weeks dreaming up marginal, if not also dangerous, if not also expensive monkey-patches ... AFTER a load-center has already become an overstuffed bowl of worms.

    No room for that 60A breaker?

    "Code" doesn't even try to prevent poor planning nor foolish.

    All it cares about is that no particular flavour of foolish give rise to a fire or electrocution hazard.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    St Louis
    Posts
    19,544
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    2476
    Likes (Received)
    3736

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by atomarc View Post
    How do you connect the tap with no disconnect device on the line side...or are you switching the main breaker off and 'tapping' your new load off of that?

    Stuart

    Taps usually go TO disconnects, fused ones, or the main breakers of other panels. They are lugged onto the feeder by whatever method is convenient. Not usually done hot......

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    California
    Posts
    2,797
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    30
    Likes (Received)
    697

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by atomarc View Post
    How do you connect the tap with no disconnect device on the line side...or are you switching the main breaker off and 'tapping' your new load off of that?

    Stuart
    Some breaker panels can come with what are called “Feed Through Lugs” that are factory installed and connected to the bottom of the bus bars for this purpose. Some brands/models have field installable options for this as well. But you can’t legally “roll your own” by drilling and tapping the bus, it has to be an approved and listed option. The main purpose is to feed power through your panel to a sub panel, but they can be used to feed to a single load too, so long as you understand and follow the tap rules. This is not for the average Joe homeowner in most cases though, the rules are not simple.

  13. Likes digger doug liked this post
  14. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    21,040
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7561
    Likes (Received)
    12302

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post
    Not usually done hot......


    Ten charac

  15. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,720
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    673
    Likes (Received)
    685

    Default

    Not to beat a dead horse and I’ll admit I’m way out of my usual knowledge base here, but I did read the NEC and Canadian Elec Code on taps, and they do call for upstream protection. Length of tap etc determines how much percentage of total ampacity from line the tap can be, but it does have a breaker/fuze/protection on line side- just not dedicated only for the tap or taps themselves as a regular sub panel from main panel would have.

    So the question still exists- the guy was talking about line from utility directly to tap without breaker. Sounded non code to me. No?

    L7

  16. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    21,040
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7561
    Likes (Received)
    12302

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    Not to beat a dead horse and I’ll admit I’m way out of my usual knowledge base here, but I did read the NEC and Canadian Elec Code on taps, and they do call for upstream protection. Length of tap etc determines how much percentage of total ampacity from line the tap can be, but it does have a breaker/fuze/protection on line side- just not dedicated only for the tap or taps themselves as a regular sub panel from main panel would have.

    So the question still exists- the guy was talking about line from utility directly to tap without breaker. Sounded non code to me. No?

    L7
    You ARE "beating a dead horse". Use proper breakers. Fiddles are for musicians.

    Let the question find it own place to sit if it gets weary of standing.

    We start talking NON code and what some OTHER guy may or may not have done - or only talked about planning to do, and even then only "someday maybe?"

    How much spare time d'you have budgeted to piss-away..
    ..before the Universe ends of Old Age?

    JF work to Code. As a MINIMUM!

    Let those who do it all day, every day sort the edge-cases and subtle nuances.
    Mostly, they will avoid those.

    Because a bare MINIMUM is exactly what NFPA 70 / NEC or CEC IS!

    Better is better. Good on yah!

    Lesser is not allowed at all.

    Because Provinces, Territories, States, Counties and Cities enact it into THEIR Law.

    Those who publish it do not. They call it "voluntary".
    Don't let that "voluntary" part fool yah.

    It's the Local authority as has already "volunteered" FOR us.. and they hold the actual enforcement power. With the force of Law.

    Written some years ago, but a very short, clear, read as to how it works in Canada is essentially the same MANNER as it works in the USA.

    Note that local jurisdictions may make amendments when they adopt the code into force of LAW. And they DO!

    What is the Canadian Electrical Code – Part 1 - IAEI Magazine

    Your local Law is online, too - State level at the very least.
    Last edited by thermite; 08-22-2021 at 09:46 AM.

  17. Likes rabler liked this post
  18. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    2,351
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    39
    Likes (Received)
    329

    Default

    I'm thinking that it's not the code that matters. I know of no code police wandering around looking for code violations. There are many places that are not up to code simply because they were build prior to code addition or change. However the wiring code was developed to lower fire possibilities while some later codes were added to prevent electrical shock. I would think the best way is to do what is needed to also prevent the situation the code was made for, in this case fire because a breaker's purpose is to limit the amperage delivered to a particular wire size. So as simple rule should be used, the life you protect can be your own!

  19. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    21,040
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    7561
    Likes (Received)
    12302

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Froneck View Post
    I'm thinking that it's not the code that matters. I know of no code police wandering around looking for code violations.
    Depends. No, most days they don't go out looking for trouble. Something has to attract their attention. Or somebody complains or rats-out a scary situation.

    But then... check your own County "enforcement". it is all published. They do have "teeth".

    There are citations, X-days to correct, fines if not. A Fire Marshall can shutter your building you get it wrong enough to be seen as a fire-threat or risk to life..

    My old employer renovated an old storefront, primo location, metro DC for serious coin for a new retail store. The project manager was a hard-driver, but serious arrogant. Twice turned down on final occupancy permit over a minor electrical code violation he had overlooked whilst getting the BIG stuff done. Matter of 20 or 30 minutes and under a hundred bucks worth of materials to correct.

    Third go, he calls for inspection, inspector is exasperated:

    "Why haven't you CORRECTED that? It is important, but TRIVIAL to fix!"
    "Why did you even call for the inspection if you had not DONE it?"

    Jim says he has higher priorities, "Grand Opening" is in three days, all the advertising is out, and he always meets his deadlines. But he still doesn't FIX the violation! Mule stubborn, and believes he is strong enough to not HAVE to do, he'd rather pay a bribe.

    Bad move. Inspector didn't WANT a bribe.
    He wanted Code compliance!

    Go figure! Some of them are just that way!

    Grand Opening day arrives, Founder and Chairman of the Company exits his Mercedes roadster at the kerb. Newspapers & TV are running camera as Metro DC police follow him into the store, put him in handcuffs, out and into a cruiser, off to the station.

    Lawster had him out, same hour, but meanwhile, police had cleared the whole store and taped the doors, kept it shut for two weeks 'coz the inspector would NOT come back any sooner.

    After three fails in a row? He didn't HAVE to, either!

    One can ALWAYS f**k with City, State, and County.

    You CAN TOO "fight City Hall"

    But it surely ain't the cheapest way to entertain yerself.


  20. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    22,563
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    So the question still exists- the guy was talking about line from utility directly to tap without breaker. Sounded non code to me. No?

    L7
    There are meter boxes (I have one) for a 400 amp service (single phase), that have (2) lugs on each leg, downstream of the meter, that feed your main breaker panel.
    In this case, qty (2) 200 amp panels.

  21. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    California
    Posts
    827
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    777
    Likes (Received)
    175

    Default

    this reminds me of a story a guy and the range tells about the time he had a job refinishing hard wood floors back in new york before he went off to Korea for the war , he was saying how the floor sanding machine would blow the fuse so his boss had a extension cord that he had cut the plug off of and replaced with with two big alligator clips so he could pop the cover off the panel and clip right on to the mains before the fuse . no more blow fuse the guy tells me i reply ya no more house one day . the other thing he told us about his time in boot camp was the dirt poor kids from the appalachias w.v. 18 19 years old some of them there teeth were so bad they pulled them all at one time and gave them false teeth . i can't say any of its true but no thank you

  22. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    peekskill, NY
    Posts
    27,422
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    6388

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 1yesca View Post
    t...boss had a extension cord that he had cut the plug off of and replaced with with two big alligator clips so he could pop the cover off the panel and clip right on to the mains before the fuse . ...
    Absolute truth there. My buddy from work hired an outfit to re-do his oak floors in his house, the guys did *exactly* that.

    George: "uh oh, VERY scary guys."

    Floor Guy: "nah, we do this ALL the time, don't worry."

  23. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    St Louis
    Posts
    19,544
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    2476
    Likes (Received)
    3736

    Default

    That was standard procedure for bar bands in the 1970s and 80s.

    Bars had such bad power that you took a "power box" with you for stage power and clipped it onto the main lugs.

    You couldn't run your band power from a single outlet on the same circuit as the coolers.


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •