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Ask me anything about home electrical requirements, electrical code, wiring, devices

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[OP]
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Oct 26, 2003
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Ask me anything about home electrical requirements, electrical code, wiring, devices

Saw few post asking about the Canadian Electrical Code, it seems people like to give complicated and confusing answers. I'm an electrical engineer and I do this for a living, feel free to ask me about code related issues, wiring types, installation, devices, etc. I'm specialized in commercial and institutional design but I do residential occasionally.

Ontario Electrical Code 2015
Ontario Building Code 2015
Toronto Green Standards
Lighting Design & Simulation
Power Distribution 120/208/277/347/600/13.8kV single and 3 phase
Fire Alarm
Security
Communication/Data, Cat6/A, Fiber single/multi-mode, 802.11AC

this thread is no longer monitored until further notice, but there are plenty of knowledgeable people who can answer your questions
Last edited by divx on Aug 11th, 2016 6:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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3812 replies
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Jan 2, 2012
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KINGSTON
OK I'll take you up on your offer. :D
I went to replace a GFI on an outdoor box, and discovered that the box itself had two circuits on two different breakers fed by 14/3. One circuit terminated at the GFI, while the other carried on and fed a series of internal receptacles.
I couldn't figure out why the GFI wouldn't test/reset until I realised that there was a downstream load; ( a DSL modem, of all things.) (I'm assuming that the GFI was detecting the voltage differential on the neutral side, thus causing it to stay tripped.
Do you happen to know if this Code compliant, and better still, wise? My argument is, having two circuits feeding into a device box is, as it has been pointed out to me, not a Code violation, bad layout. In this scenario, if the GFI tripped, all the interior loads would have to be disconnected (TV's, modems and potentially anything else that could be running, or even in standby mode) before it could be reset.
[OP]
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Oct 26, 2003
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simple solution is just try replace the GFI receptacle, one time I installed a brand new GFI receptacle and it won't work, could be it was faulty, then after I replaced it works again. It is possible the device is faulty or became faulty.

GFI will work with 14/3 2 circuit configuration the way you mentioned, cause only 1 circuit is used by the GFI. GFI sense current difference between hot and neutral internally, it will not measure the current from other sources.

Having multiple circuit in a junction box is normal.

If GFI is tripped, you can reset it by pressing the reset button, no need to disconnect the load unless the load is causing a fault.
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Oct 24, 2012
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I have an old 100A fuse panel that does its job so I don't want to replace it.
It only has one slot for 60A (fuses) which is used for the range and I can't relocate that to a 30A slot.
I want to hook up a subpanel (breakers) rated 60A right next to my fuse panel so I can add several new circuits.

Can rule 28-110 (2)(a) apply?
My plan is as follow:

1. Link the main panel with the sub panel with a 6" piece of 1.5" EMT
2. Cut off a strip of insulation from the two #3 copper wires that go from the main 100A fuses to the bus bars.
3. Install a properly sized split bolts that would tap the two #3 to two #6 TW90 copper.
4. Wrap the tap with self vulcanizing rubber to the appropriate thickness, wrap that with electrical tape.
5. Pass the two #6 through the EMT that goes to the sub panel and hook them up to the main 60A breakers.
6. Another #6 would go to a space on the neutral bus bar in the main panel to the neutral bus bar of the sub panel.
7. Same as step 6 with bare #6 copper from ground bus to sub's ground bus.

I know the NEC has the same rule, but it isn't classified under motor loads. That's why I ask.


Yeah, that's right, I went straight to hard mode ;)
[OP]
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60A is too big for range though. you can double lug a panel but I'm not familiar with the old fuse panel. You may be better off just replace the panel.
#3 wire is fine, your method is also fine, if you really want to proceed you can but it's gonna look terrible.
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Whitby
Why not relocate some circuits to the new panel; use the space freed up to install breakers to feed the pony sub panel. That will look clean and the sub panel will be 'protected' as its being fed from breakers.

I didn't think you could double lug to install a new panel divx?...by that you mean feed the sub panel by installing the wire ends into the lugs the main panel is fed by?
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I'd love to replace the panel, but the main disconnect is part of the panel. So to cut the power so I can remove it, I'd have to pull the meter out. I'd rather not get the POCO involved.

Yeah 60A is too big, but the fuses in the 60A slot are 35A. It's a block with tube fuses. It's the only block that can hold fuses up to 60A.
But while I have plenty of 30A slots, I can't put a range on it.

Double lug, hmmm then I'd still have to have #6 to go to the stove just so it matches the capacity of the 60A fuses.

So if my method is fine, I'll go for that. Looking terrible is a matter of opinion. Two panels side by side linked by a EMT raceway kinda looks "cool" to me :p
The splices will be hidden in the 2nd half of the main panel where the main disconnect is located.

Thanks for confirming my idea.
Zamboni wrote:
Dec 13th, 2012 7:25 pm
Why not relocate some circuits to the new panel; use the space freed up to install breakers to feed the pony sub panel. That will look clean and the sub panel will be 'protected' as its being fed from breakers.
The main panel is a fuse panel, not breaker panel. Now whether breaks are better than fuses, that's another story and I still believe fuses are safer (excluding GFCI and AFCI breakers).

Anyway, the main panel has 18 screw fuse slots (30A max), 3x 30A 240v fuse holders, and 1x 60A 240 fuse holder.
There is only ONE space I can use and that's the 60A. That 60A is used by the range.
If I transfer the range to the sub panel, then I gained nothing in capacity vs. just feeding it with a 30A set of fuse.
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alkizmo wrote:
Dec 13th, 2012 7:36 pm
Now whether breaks are better than fuses, that's another story and I still believe fuses are safer (excluding GFCI and AFCI breakers).
+1
I once came across a breaker in a damp basement that was seized from corrosion.
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Whitby
My only experience in this is numerous woodworkers adding sub panels for tools in garage workshops. I always heard double lugging is a big No-No, most main panels lugs are rated to attach 1 wire. Never heard of anyone (except grow ops pre meter :-0 ) tapping into the leads as you're considering. I'm suprised you don't need the protection of a breaker (or fuse) on the wires feeding the sub panel.

All that said, I have the wire taps and about 120 new cartridge fuses you might need, I'll dig into my storage later.
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The protection of the #6 wires is the 60A breakers in the subpanel.
Sure, the #6 can't handle 100A, but the chances of a short circuit occuring in between the line taps and the 60A fuses is almost impossible. Those wires are encased the whole time in the main panel, EMT and subpanel. And even if it did occur.. as I said, they are encased and it's not like they are #14 wires, they're #6, they can handle 60% of the 100A fuses. The 100A fuses will pop fast enough (it's not like a short will only use 100A, it will use ALL the amps).

I mean, think about it, the wires going from the electric pole, to your meter, to your main panel, are NOT fuse protected, and behind it is a 12kVA transformer :p
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i live in a condo and i think the ceiling is concrete with popcorn texture. How hard would it be to install some kind of lights above?
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alkizmo wrote:
Dec 13th, 2012 8:23 pm
The protection of the #6 wires is the 60A breakers in the subpanel.
Sure, the #6 can't handle 100A, but the chances of a short circuit occuring in between the line taps and the 60A fuses is almost impossible. Those wires are encased the whole time in the main panel, EMT and subpanel. And even if it did occur.. as I said, they are encased and it's not like they are #14 wires, they're #6, they can handle 60% of the 100A fuses. The 100A fuses will pop fast enough (it's not like a short will only use 100A, it will use ALL the amps).

I mean, think about it, the wires going from the electric pole, to your meter, to your main panel, are NOT fuse protected, and behind it is a 12kVA transformer :p
Must admit I was picturing this wrong, I thought you were tapping into the leads feeding your main panel....reading it again its clear on original post #2 you are planning to tap after the main breaker. I've seen people simply add another wire into the lug where main feed attaches, sorry for the confusion I added. I actually have the taps, never seen used in that application though.

Depending on the area there often are fuses at the pole.
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EchoAngel911 wrote:
Dec 13th, 2012 9:25 pm
i live in a condo and i think the ceiling is concrete with popcorn texture. How hard would it be to install some kind of lights above?
You mean recessed into the concrete? Pretty much impossible. Not from an electrical standpoint, just that there's pretty much no way (unless you're willing to hire engineers to fight it) the condo is going to allow you to drill into the concrete, especially to run wires and stuff. With concrete ceilings in condos, what's there is going to stay there and what's not there is never going to be there.
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Zamboni wrote:
Dec 13th, 2012 10:17 pm
I've seen people simply add another wire into the lug where main feed attaches, sorry for the confusion I added. I actually have the taps, never seen used in that application though.
Well, adding another wire in the lug where the main feed attaches wouldn't work as it wouldn't fit and the lug isn't designed for 2 wires. I admit if there was a way to add another lug, it would be easier than cutting a section of insulation, wrenching a split bolt, then wrapping a TON of self vulcanizing rubber. This will make quite large bulbous taps, good thing there is a LOT of space in that section, because the #3 won't bend that easily! It needs to make a 90 degree turn towards the other side of the panel to get to the bus bars.

I admit that the application is quite irregular, but hey, if code allows, then why not. I love my classy fuse panel, but I need 10 more circuits.
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is there a special type of wire i need to use for wiring range hood power? which wiring should i use?
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