60A subpanel

drmoose00March 31, 2010

I am considering adding a 50A-60A sub-panel in my 6ft basement/crawlspace, to increase number of branch circuits I can run, and ease the running of some dedicated circuits. I am probably at least going to consult with a licensed electrician for this, if not having them install, but I like to have some idea of what I am talking about before doing this.

(I have done this before (30A) in a different situation). For this situation, I have an older 120A main, that has only a few spaces left (space for 1 larger double pole breaker (above the main shut off), and space for one smaller double pole breaker (slave to main shut off)).

A few questions: if the breaker for the sub-panel is "above the main", does it matter if my overall load (sub plus main) exceeds that of the main (that is, if I have a full main, and then a 60A sub, this is OK?)

Second, the sub will basically be there to run a bunch of kitchen branch circuits: ventilation, hot water, disposal, dishwasher, 240V steam oven. I could also put a built-in oven on it (needs 30A 120/240 connection to panel), if that were possible. What are the rules for determining what/how much I can have on this sub? What devices are considered "ON", verses a % usage?

thanks for the input.

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Ron Natalie

I assume since you say "above the main" it's a split bus panel. Yeah, you can connect the feeder to the subpanel up there. Depending on what manufacturer it is, I might consider just putting a new, larger, more reliable main in rather than kludging in a sub.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2010 at 8:57PM
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yeah it is a split panel.

The thing that is appealing about the sub is that the main is on the far side of the garage, so to wire anything in the kitchen, or another part of the house, it will require a pretty long run, and if I want to wire multiple dedicated circuits, this could be tedious, and get expensive. A sub in the basement will allow me to do a lot from the basement, and if I end up with a circuit that keeps tripping, I can just create a new one pretty easily. Drywall is off, and so I have great access now to do this. A month form now it gets lot more difficult.

I am thinking of actually running for a 100A sub, and relocating some things off the main - like the dishwasher/disposal, ovens, and small appliance circuits. Of course, a 80 ft run in copper, for a 100A sub won't be cheap either.


    Bookmark   March 31, 2010 at 10:19PM
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