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Thread: Which brand of electrical panel?

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member FrankPlumber's Avatar
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    Default Which brand of electrical panel?

    I'm building a new home and I'm wondering about the brand of electrical panel ( Siemens, GE, etc ).

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Electrician Chris75's Avatar
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    That question will only get you opinions.... My favorite happens to be GE, but really means nothing... so buy what ever you feel is in your price range... I would probably check the price difference between GFI and AFCI breakers and make my choice that way.

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    DIY Senior Member BrianJohn's Avatar
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    Square D over GE anyday

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    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
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    Square D QO, to be specific!

  5. #5

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    Seimans, SquareD Homeline and Cutler Hammer are all standard here and about the same quality/style/price. About 120 bucks

    We use 200 amp, 40 space, all in one panels in AZ.

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member FrankPlumber's Avatar
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    Default 40 spaces?

    When you say 40 spaces, is it 40 breakers double pole which would means 80 breakers single pole or it's 40 breakers single pole?

    Thanks a lot

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    Electrician Chris75's Avatar
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    Square D is way overpriced IMO, but to each his own. And I also dislike the panel layout, but you could easily say the same with GE.

  8. #8
    DIY Senior Member construct30's Avatar
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    Many breakers tend to be interchangable with other panels, square D doesn't work in a lot of panels and the other breakers don't work in theirs. I would check for what is available and for what price in your area.

    200 amps 40 single breakers 110. 220's counts as two.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by FrankPlumber View Post
    When you say 40 spaces, is it 40 breakers double pole which would means 80 breakers single pole or it's 40 breakers single pole?

    Thanks a lot

    40 full spaces.

    I avoid twin breakers and would only install them in a pinch.

    This was a 20/40 chock FULL of twins. Burned buss behind the A/C breaker lead to the change.




    Last edited by Alectrician; 01-06-2008 at 05:20 PM.

  10. #10
    Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek Mikey's Avatar
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    What were those sense coils around the service entrance cables used for? Some kind of remote billing, maybe?

  11. #11
    DIY Senior Member Nate R's Avatar
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    RFI Noise reduction?

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    What were those sense coils around the service entrance cables used for? Some kind of remote billing, maybe?
    Load controller. The POCO's here offer a reduced KWH rate if you keep your usage under a certain point during PEAK hours. If you go over, they stick it to you.

    If you go over, it starts shutting stuff off....A/C, W/H etc. They were all the rage in the 80's and I remove them all the time. I can't remember the number of service calls I've gone to where the customer didn't even know they had a load controller.

  13. #13
    Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek Mikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrankPlumber View Post
    I'm building a new home...
    Brand of panel aside, if you think you might ever want a whole-house (or part-house) backup generator, now is the time to install the wiring for it. Typically the transfer switch switches to a subset of circuits to keep live (unless you do in fact install a true whole-house unit). Wiring those circuits on a separate subpanel now will make the eventual installation much easier.

    I've recommended this to several people, both in blizzard country and in hurricane country, and those who took my advice have thanked me for it.

  14. #14
    In the Trades Bob NH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    Brand of panel aside, if you think you might ever want a whole-house (or part-house) backup generator, now is the time to install the wiring for it. Typically the transfer switch switches to a subset of circuits to keep live (unless you do in fact install a true whole-house unit). Wiring those circuits on a separate subpanel now will make the eventual installation much easier.
    I installed and like very much a UL Approved interlock system that lets you back-feed a breaker on the main panel so any circuit may be powered by the generator. You will typically want to turn off the breakers to any large circuits; especially those that are automatically controlled like A/C, electric heat, and water heaters.

    You can get the kit for about $80 including shipping and they are available for both the QO and Homeline Square D panels. Square D Generator Interlock Kit QOCGK2C Inter-Lock[IMG]http://pics.****static.com/aw/pics/s.gif[/IMG]</IMG> [Click the link and then substitute e b a y without the spaces for the **** in the address line of your browser]

    They are available for other panels but none that I have found in that price range.

    The interlock requires shutting off the main before the generator breaker can be turned on. It allows powering any circuit in the house from the generator but you must manage the load to within the capacity of the generator.

    The kit contains a device to lock the breaker in place and a template for mounting the interlock. You can use any size 2-pole breaker that is appropriate for your generator and wiring. The 2-pole breaker must be mounted at the top of the right column in the load center.

  15. #15
    DIY Senior Member BrianJohn's Avatar
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    I have always felt if you can afford an generator spend the big bucks do it right and get an automatic transfer switch (ATS). But then I use to sell and service ATS's so I am a bit bias.

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