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How can I find out what Amps in my house?

  • Last Updated:
  • May 28th, 2022 1:33 am
Deal Addict
Jun 26, 2019
2007 posts
1741 upvotes
GTA
KevinM56081 wrote: Agree. What's in the 2" pipe.... Everywhere in Ontario.
The 2" is likely the service from the street to your meter, and then the smaller one is likely the wire from your meter to your panel.
Deal Addict
Sep 13, 2016
3463 posts
2238 upvotes
Mississauga
KevinM56081 wrote: Agree. What's in the 2" pipe.... Everywhere in Ontario.
the bigger pipe is the connection from the street to the meter. the smaller is from meter to panel. you can also check what the meter says. I have similar setup. Bigger pipe from street to the meter. And the meter has a label saying 200amps. So I am pretty confident that the cable upto my meter is already provisioned for 200amps. And looks like it is a common occurrence in most subdivisions built in last 15 years or so.
Deal Guru
May 29, 2006
10705 posts
3367 upvotes
this cost and service varies greatly where you live in this country, i had the local inspector out for a hot tub permit, he was telling the cost in Edmonton if you dont have 200A pulled to your house was in the 10s of 1000s.

im suprised this isnt talked about more with the push to electric cars, a supercharger is what, 50-60AMP? doesnt take much to make your 100AMP unusable, my home is 10 years old and was 100AMP installed.
Banned
Jun 4, 2020
1634 posts
1739 upvotes
Clarington, ON
SubjectivelyObjective wrote: The 2" is likely the service from the street to your meter, and then the smaller one is likely the wire from your meter to your panel.
Yes. Totally agree. As I've said often. 200A supplies from the utility.

Between the meter and the panel is often the question on underground service.
Deal Addict
Jun 26, 2019
2007 posts
1741 upvotes
GTA
rocking23nf wrote: this cost and service varies greatly where you live in this country, i had the local inspector out for a hot tub permit, he was telling the cost in Edmonton if you dont have 200A pulled to your house was in the 10s of 1000s.

im suprised this isnt talked about more with the push to electric cars, a supercharger is what, 50-60AMP? doesnt take much to make your 100AMP unusable, my home is 10 years old and was 100AMP installed.
Your current house just missed the new building code updates - I guess it depends on where you live, but OBC now requires it, and a 40A rough in to the garage.
Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
12127 posts
7303 upvotes
Paris
rocking23nf wrote: this cost and service varies greatly where you live in this country, i had the local inspector out for a hot tub permit, he was telling the cost in Edmonton if you dont have 200A pulled to your house was in the 10s of 1000s.
Local utility told my buddy they would upgrade street to house, buried cable, for 60 feet or so for free if he was upgrading.
SubjectivelyObjective wrote: Your current house just missed the new building code updates - I guess it depends on where you live, but OBC now requires it, and a 40A rough in to the garage.
Ontario Building Code doesnt apply in Edmonton :). Plus, Doug cancelled this as i was informed of some time ago on this board. I guess he didn’t want his builder supporters spending the extra $100 per house. I think they still need to run conduit to the garage from the panel, but 100 amp is still ok for main panel.
Deal Guru
Feb 9, 2006
12991 posts
7772 upvotes
Brampton
ChicoQuente wrote: In my experience it is extremely rare that an overhead service will sized to 200A to your home if you have 100A panel in the home. I have only done a few dozen but I have never come across an overhead service that was already oversized for 200A ahead of time. It is pretty cheap for the hydro company to replace overhead lines to your house so there is not much incentive to go above and beyond what is necessary. They will need less than an hour (most of which is spent following safety procedures and setup) to cut down the old lines and replace them.

It is fairly easy for you to figure out what you have. Go out to the side of your house and check the meter base itself. It's the grey box that your meter is on. There's a noticeable size difference between a 100A and 200A meter base. If your meter is ~14"x~8" you've got 100A meter and if it's ~17"x~12" you've got 100A meter. If you have 100A meter base you will have to replace everything. Your responsibility (done by the electrician you hire) will be the meter base, service mast (the conduit coming up from the meter base to the overhead lines), weatherhead at the top of the conduit, conduit from meter base to panel, new panel, wire from meter base to top of service mast and the wire from meter base to panel.

It's been 3-4 years since I've done a service upgrade but of the 2 dozen or so that I've done I have never once seen a customer charged by their utility for the line upgrade. However since I stopped doing I have seen more and more people on RFD say they were charged.

If you can't figure it out take a photo of your meter base and also measure the diameter of the conduit coming out the top and going up to the utility lines.

EDIT: Another factor aside from just the size of the lines to your house is the capacity of the transformer your house is fed from. If it's already close to it's limit then your provider will likely pass the cost of a new transformer on to you which is not cheap.
Did you mean to say 100a for both or 200a for the larger measurement?
Penalty Box
Nov 21, 2013
8128 posts
9301 upvotes
Montréal
IndyBeak wrote: the bigger pipe is the connection from the street to the meter. the smaller is from meter to panel. you can also check what the meter says. I have similar setup. Bigger pipe from street to the meter. And the meter has a label saying 200amps. So I am pretty confident that the cable upto my meter is already provisioned for 200amps. And looks like it is a common occurrence in most subdivisions built in last 15 years or so.
All meters are rated for 200 Amps for a regular service. This does not mean that se service have the correct gauge for 200 Amps. For 400 Amps the meter is rated lower, and the utility install current transformers
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jun 21, 2003
5816 posts
3155 upvotes
Stoney Creek, ON
tebore wrote: Did you mean to say 100a for both or 200a for the larger measurement?
Yes I made a mistake putting 100 for both. I will fix that. I’m surprised you’re the first one to call me out!
Deal Guru
Feb 9, 2006
12991 posts
7772 upvotes
Brampton
ChicoQuente wrote: Yes I made a mistake putting 100 for both. I will fix that. I’m surprised you’re the first one to call me out!
Well I wanted to use the information to know more about my meter so I wanted to be sure.
Sr. Member
Aug 16, 2007
914 posts
120 upvotes
Richmond Hill
timofeewho wrote: How much was the EV charger btw?
I had the wiring run from the panel to the garage and a Level 2 Nema 1450 Plug installed. It was an additional $750 to do that. All depends on what you need though.

I don't have an EV yet, just futureproof as I will eventually purchase in a year or 2
Deal Addict
Apr 18, 2005
3552 posts
1796 upvotes
Mississauga
Yea.. I'm not sure how I can get a definitive answer.

I submitted a ticket to Alectra and the guy calls and tells me that it 125A service .. which I find odd. And he said if you want 200 then they need to pull a new line could be 10-15K.
90s build 3400sqft only 125A service ??

Anyway.. I took a picture of my meter .. it's a little odd as this house used to have solar which has been removed. (Another reason I think it should be 200A already)

20210813_115313.jpg

Also here is a pic how the neighbors look like..
20210813_115556.jpg
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
8597 posts
5518 upvotes
Mississauga
Our house was built in 1992 in a new development and its 200A service was an added-cost upgrade at the time. I'm guessing that unless original owners paid for the upgrade, Mississauga Hydro would have only run 100A service to the meter.

If your area is like mine, everything is underground. Hence the $10-15k cost to move up to 200A supply.
Sr. Member
Dec 21, 2020
598 posts
522 upvotes
TLSRULZ wrote: Yea.. I'm not sure how I can get a definitive answer.

I submitted a ticket to Alectra and the guy calls and tells me that it 125A service .. which I find odd. And he said if you want 200 then they need to pull a new line could be 10-15K.
90s build 3400sqft only 125A service ??
I did the same thing last year. Emailed Alectra and was told I could only do 125A service (currently have 100A) and running new lines underground could be in 10-15K range. Unfortunately for me the transformer that I think is mine (best I could figure from what I see) is across the street, a park and in another neighbors backyard. I'm just gonna wait it out till some incentives or something come down the pipe. Not in a hurry to jump on the electric car band wagon so no rush for me.
Deal Addict
Dec 19, 2015
3031 posts
1596 upvotes
Calgary, AB
ChicoQuente wrote: In case you wanted to know why there is actually a code rule about number of positions available based on service ampacity.
Useful info. That would probably explain why our electrician put in such a massive main panel when they upgraded our service to 200A, even though it will only needs 12 circuits max and is currently using 5 (3 garage circuits and the 100A breaker for the house panel).
rocking23nf wrote: this cost and service varies greatly where you live in this country, i had the local inspector out for a hot tub permit, he was telling the cost in Edmonton if you dont have 200A pulled to your house was in the 10s of 1000s.

im suprised this isnt talked about more with the push to electric cars, a supercharger is what, 50-60AMP? doesnt take much to make your 100AMP unusable, my home is 10 years old and was 100AMP installed.
For reference, we just paid $5k for 100>200A, moving of the main service to back alley garage from house and underground burial of service from garage to house (100A) plus a few other bits. Where we are in Calgary our service is above ground and it may be different in Edmonton and/or if you have a buried service.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jun 21, 2003
5816 posts
3155 upvotes
Stoney Creek, ON
TLSRULZ wrote: Yea.. I'm not sure how I can get a definitive answer.

I submitted a ticket to Alectra and the guy calls and tells me that it 125A service .. which I find odd. And he said if you want 200 then they need to pull a new line could be 10-15K.
90s build 3400sqft only 125A service ??

Anyway.. I took a picture of my meter .. it's a little odd as this house used to have solar which has been removed. (Another reason I think it should be 200A already)


20210813_115313.jpg


Also here is a pic how the neighbors look like..

20210813_115556.jpg
I would trust Alectra. Your provider should absolutely know what is coming to your house. If they say it's a 125A service I'd be quite surprised if it was 200A.
Member
Feb 28, 2021
258 posts
223 upvotes
Does anyone know what a service layout is? Inquired to my local utility about panel upgrade and they gave me this response as far as a new overhead line is concerned.

“ If you are looking for an upgrade, a service layout will be required by contacting Customer Service. As part of the service layout/upgrade, Festival Hydro will provide a larger O/H service line at no charge pending your new panel is not larger than 200 amps. “
Member
Dec 29, 2019
277 posts
146 upvotes
Toronto, Ontario
Jerico wrote: I was $2500 for the swap (it was $2480 or something), then $900 for the pony. I was off a hair. Total $3400+HST, permitted. Utility had 200 amp service, meter and wire to my house. Without that, it would be more complicated for sure. When my friend did his locally he had a hell of a time finding out if he had 200 amp service (he did) but if he did not the local utility was willing to run a new wire and meter for xx distance FOR FREE (I dont remember what XX was, but both of us are on residential lots vs country so it wouldnt have been over 60 feet or so).

The thing that shocked me but in retrospect makes sense is the new panel is a friggin monster. Added pics of old now in garage as pony and new. Its 90% bigger.

Edit: also, I scheduled this in late June. Getting the panel was tough, scheduling shut offs was tough. Electrician said (and I have no reason to disbelieve him) that the delay was not on their end. The pony panel still doesnt have a 100 amp breaker, just a 40 amp as the 100 amp still hasnt come in.
Can confirm about the delays and parts shortage.

My electrician has been running around trying to piece together adhoc breakers or whatever he can find and buy for all his clients including me. Seems to be a real shortage in Tlthe GTA and everyone is doing everything lol.

I am also apparently the only one on my street with 200amp service/panel right now too, which I can believe. It is not a... prosperous street.
Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
12127 posts
7303 upvotes
Paris
Askari wrote: I had the wiring run from the panel to the garage and a Level 2 Nema 1450 Plug installed. It was an additional $750 to do that. All depends on what you need though.

I don't have an EV yet, just futureproof as I will eventually purchase in a year or 2
An EV was the reason I did all this. I should have looked 2 years ahead 2 years ago. Would have been cheaper than doing it right now. Also, I can finally run 2 tools in my garage instead of needing to run a cord into the house for the dust collector. I also installed a 14-50.
Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
12127 posts
7303 upvotes
Paris
thebluegoat wrote: Does anyone know what a service layout is? Inquired to my local utility about panel upgrade and they gave me this response as far as a new overhead line is concerned.

“ If you are looking for an upgrade, a service layout will be required by contacting Customer Service. As part of the service layout/upgrade, Festival Hydro will provide a larger O/H service line at no charge pending your new panel is not larger than 200 amps. “
I dont know what it is, but I do know my electrician said the layout took my local utility forever to do.

I’m surprised at all of you Alectra folks being charged big bucks for a new underground cable. My local utility seemed to indicate it would be done nearly no cost so long as it wasnt more than 200 and further off the street than a standard subdivision. I didnt inquire directly, as they gave this info to my reliable friend.

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