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Electrical Upgrade - Existing Residential

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  • Jul 13th, 2021 10:34 am
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 1, 2017
860 posts
763 upvotes
Mississauga

Electrical Upgrade - Existing Residential

40 year old home with 100 amp service in Mississauga.

I am following the process through the Alectra Utilities website and they have 2 options:

125 amp (panel change only)
200 amp

Has anyone ever got quotes from them and is there a huge price difference between 125 & 200 upgrade?

How long do these guys take to reply?

Is there a cost involved to getting a quote from them?

thanks!
27 replies
Sr. Member
Dec 21, 2020
599 posts
526 upvotes
projectman44 wrote: 40 year old home with 100 amp service in Mississauga.

I am following the process through the Alectra Utilities website and they have 2 options:

125 amp (panel change only)
200 amp

Has anyone ever got quotes from them and is there a huge price difference between 125 & 200 upgrade?

How long do these guys take to reply?

Is there a cost involved to getting a quote from them?

thanks!
The panel only change (the 125amp one) should be around 1-2K as it's basically just replacing the panel with a new one and putting all the circuits back. All the utility does is turn the power off in the morning and back on once the panel is done. Your electrician does all the panel work and will usually deal with the Alectra as well.

The 200amp upgrade requires them to actually lay new cable from the transformer box on the street to your house. I asked them once and based on where my transformer was located (across the street, past a park, about 200-300 feet distance) they said it would be anywhere from 5-15K to do the upgrade as they would basically have to rip up streets and sidewalk to lay the new cable. I opted not to do the upgrade as I'm not really in a position to drop that kind of money at this time and I don't have a really good reason (electric car) to actually upgrade from my 100amp panel.

If you want to be sure you can contact Alectra and they should be able to tell you a better quote as they know where your particular transformer is and what would be required to lay the new cable.
Sr. Member
Dec 21, 2020
599 posts
526 upvotes
I should also add that I'm assuming you're in a part of Mississauga that has the power cables underground and not hanging. If you do have the overhead hanging power cables the cost is actually much much cheaper to replace them as there's no digging involved.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 1, 2017
860 posts
763 upvotes
Mississauga
Great...thanks!

Its underground and the box is actually in my neighbours front yard, but I'm leaning towards just the 125 service right now.

So the 1-2k cost covers the electricans cost of labour and materials? Does Alectra have any fee for the uppage?
Sr. Member
Dec 21, 2020
599 posts
526 upvotes
I believe they have a disconnect/reconnect fee but I would assume the electrician you hire to do the panel replacement (Alectra does not do that) would (should) include it as part of his quote.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
8609 posts
5532 upvotes
Mississauga
Alectra will charge a disconnect-reconnect fee. I don't know if the meter will need to be replaced. If so, that'll cost extra.
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
3385 posts
1995 upvotes
Mississauga
You do not have to deal directly with Alectra. My 25 yr old house went from 100 Amp to 200 Amp in January 2020. My LEC booked the disconnect/reconnect with Alectra as well as the ESA inspection. My all in cost for the panel was $2500+tax but likely discounted since I was also wiring a basement at the same time

New Siemens panel, new 5ft cabling from the meter to the panel. If your line is underground check the size of the conduit coming from Alectra.

Here is a picture of mine. The LEC only had to replace the smaller conduit and wiring going to my electric panel through the wall.
The conduit and wiring going to street transformer was already upsized. Alectra removed my meter and did some work for about 5 mins at the street transformer but did not replace the wiring coming to my house.

Image
Last edited by bubuski on May 20th, 2021 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Addict
Jun 26, 2019
2007 posts
1743 upvotes
GTA
projectman44 wrote: Great...thanks!

Its underground and the box is actually in my neighbours front yard, but I'm leaning towards just the 125 service right now.

So the 1-2k cost covers the electricans cost of labour and materials? Does Alectra have any fee for the uppage?
I just did a 100 to 200amp upgrade in York Region and it was $2k. Had a few minor extras on there as well. The service to my house already supported it.

Hydro One gives one free disconnect/reconnect a year.

I know Toronto does not, not sure about Alectra. This would be the only fee charged by the provider assuming your house service is adequate.

As others have said, upgrading the house service gets expensive fast.

Aside, is there a specific reason why you're upgrading? Going up to 125 doesn't seem like it would afford you that much extra. Could look at calculating the current load vs what else you want to put in. Maybe a sub panel may be better?
Deal Addict
Jan 21, 2011
1198 posts
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GTA
Better to jump to 200 now, what’s the sense in replacing the panel for 25 amp gain?
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 1, 2017
860 posts
763 upvotes
Mississauga
SubjectivelyObjective wrote: I just did a 100 to 200amp upgrade in York Region and it was $2k. Had a few minor extras on there as well. The service to my house already supported it.

Hydro One gives one free disconnect/reconnect a year.

I know Toronto does not, not sure about Alectra. This would be the only fee charged by the provider assuming your house service is adequate.

As others have said, upgrading the house service gets expensive fast.

Aside, is there a specific reason why you're upgrading? Going up to 125 doesn't seem like it would afford you that much extra. Could look at calculating the current load vs what else you want to put in. Maybe a sub panel may be better?
Well my mother-in-law lives in the basement (6 months of the year) with her own kitchenette so we have 2 stoves, an inground pool. In total 5 people in our house.
We have never had an issue (and still dont) as she usually stays at here other property 1/2 the year. Obviously didnt last summer and possibly this one as well.
Deal Addict
Jun 26, 2019
2007 posts
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projectman44 wrote: Well my mother-in-law lives in the basement (6 months of the year) with her own kitchenette so we have 2 stoves, an inground pool. In total 5 people in our house.
We have never had an issue (and still dont) as she usually stays at here other property 1/2 the year. Obviously didnt last summer and possibly this one as well.
Yeah, so with a lot of scenarios like this, assuming everything is balances and you don't really *Need* to upgrade, then maybe the best solution for you is to do nothing for the time being. As others have said, if you upgrade now, and then in the future you need a car charger, etc, then you might need to go to 200amps anyways, at which point there wasnt much point in doing the 125upgrade.

On a random tangent, do you have a variable speed pump, led lights, more energy efficient stuff? If not, upgrades like these would both lower you monthly hydro bills as well as lower your household demand. So all in all these might be a better place to spend you money for the time being, as you will actually see some return on investment, and it may accomplish a similar goal.

Just some food for thought, hope it helps.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 1, 2017
860 posts
763 upvotes
Mississauga
bubuski wrote: You do not have to deal directly with Alectra. My 25 yr old house went from 100 Amp to 200 Amp in January 2020. My LEC booked the disconnect/reconnect with Alectra as well as the ESA inspection. My all in cost for the panel was $2500+tax but likely discounted since I was also wiring a basement at the same time

New Siemens panel, new 5ft cabling from the meter to the panel. If your line is underground check the size of the conduit coming from Alectra.

Here is a picture of mine. The LEC only had to replace the smaller conduit and wiring going to my electric panel through the wall.
The conduit and wiring going to street transformer was already upsized. Alectra removed my meter and did some work for about 5 mins at the street transformer but did not replace the wiring coming to my house.

Image
I have exact same setup - 2 1/2" coming from the street and 1 3/4" into basement.
Deal Expert
Jan 27, 2006
20731 posts
14198 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
I was looking into this a few years back and if my memory serves me correctly, maybe wrong, a couple of choices -

1. Upgrade to a 125A panel with a 125A breaker - cheap and relatively easy.
2. Upgrade to a 200A capable panel but with a 125A breaker to match the service level. Similar to the above but if the OP decides later on to upgrade the service, the panel won't need to be replaced... just upgrade the 125A breaker to a 200A one. While we are here, wire in a 220V outlet that can support a plug-in charger for future charging if needed. Even if that outlet isn't needed to for e-charging, a 220 V outlet is handy for a lot other things.
3. Upgrade to a 200 A service.

Option 2 seems to be a decent middle ground for most.
Banned
Jun 4, 2020
1634 posts
1739 upvotes
Clarington, ON
projectman44 wrote: I have exact same setup - 2 1/2" coming from the street and 1 3/4" into basement.
2" and 1-1/4"?

You likely have 200A to meter already.

Would need to replace between meter and panel. 200A. Bam.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 1, 2017
860 posts
763 upvotes
Mississauga
KevinM56081 wrote: 2" and 1-1/4"?

You likely have 200A to meter already.

Would need to replace between meter and panel. 200A. Bam.
i measured the conduit width
Banned
Jun 4, 2020
1634 posts
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Clarington, ON
projectman44 wrote: i measured the conduit width
Outside diameter. What ypu are measuring are nominal 2" and 1-1/4". Reasonably sure 2" pipe underground from transformer is required to provide conductors able to supply 200A. Don't have a code book handy to provide reference. YMMV.
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
3385 posts
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Mississauga
projectman44 wrote: I have exact same setup - 2 1/2" coming from the street and 1 3/4" into basement.
There is no way for you to confirm the wiring in the conduct coming from the street but the bigger conduit size is a huge likelihood that your meter already 200 amp capable service.
Deal Addict
Sep 13, 2016
3464 posts
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Mississauga
on a related note, I also jumped out and checked mine. Looks like I have 2" pipe coming in from supply side as well. And my meter reads 1-200A. So does it mean my house most likely already has 200amp service from the transformer. And if I ever decided to upgrade, I will only have to worry about changes on my side of the meter?
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Oct 19, 2008
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IndyBeak wrote: on a related note, I also jumped out and checked mine. Looks like I have 2" pipe coming in from supply side as well. And my meter reads 1-200A. So does it mean my house most likely already has 200amp service from the transformer. And if I ever decided to upgrade, I will only have to worry about changes on my side of the meter?
Yep
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
3385 posts
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Mississauga
IndyBeak wrote: on a related note, I also jumped out and checked mine. Looks like I have 2" pipe coming in from supply side as well. And my meter reads 1-200A. So does it mean my house most likely already has 200amp service from the transformer. And if I ever decided to upgrade, I will only have to worry about changes on my side of the meter?
What size is the conduct between your meter and the panel?

I dont know if the 80% rule applies to an electric panel, but if your panel is already rated for 1-200Amp then you will be saving quite a bit by keeping your current panel but with a 200Amp breaker. My old panel was only rated to 125Amp with a 100Amp breaker so I had to put in a new 200Amp panel when I upgraded the service.

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