help help please!! what's the difference between 1

jean61August 17, 2012

1 - 400 amp meter base with (2) 200 Amp panels


1- 400 amp meter base and 1 400 meter panel....or is there such a thing??

The pros/cons???

Also...for additional cans and running wire for new construction in the Northern VA area. What is a fair price for running extra cans and adding cabinet lighting?

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I've never seen a residential 400A panel. The limiting factor is that a single panel can't have more than 42 slots, which in turn limits the number of circuits that you can have. With the current code and a really big house, you might have trouble fitting everything in a single panel.

The price for installation is dependent upon things like the distance from the panel, how difficult the installation will be. and the local prevailing rates. I'd get a couple of competitive bids.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 8:47AM
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Thanks.... That is what I thought. Just wanted to make sure.

I just found out-- What we are getting is 3- 200a panels.
2 for regular use from the 400amp meter box
1 200a panel for a propane generator (backup system)

I do have one other question?
115 v-- lines were ran within our home ( currently under construction) ...
shouldn't it be 120v???

I was just trying to make sure

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 9:05AM
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Don't let them short you on the voltage, the lower the volts the more amps and the more you'll pay for electricity. That means you're electric bill will be roughly 4% higher than if you were getting the full 120 volts.

Just kidding! People call it different things - 120, 115, even 110. It's all the same thing.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 9:38AM
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The 'standard' voltage has wandered around for many years.

The NEC now defines the nominal values for 120/240 V split-phase as 120 and 240 (and those are the values used in any calculations).

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 10:45AM
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toxcrusadr Clay Soil

And the voltage your house operates on will be whatever your power provider is sending, and has nothing to do with the lines your elec contractor installed. They will carry 120 just as well as 115.

Mine happens to be 117 in town. At my rural property, the elec coop is sending me voltage as high as 128 sometimes.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 5:43PM
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Thank You ALL for responding. I have been so uneasy about this house build for several reason--which I won't go into but it has made me question everything!! It's sad as this should be an exciting time for us....but it's only made me lose faith in our builder & his subs....which is making this an day to day (what was done wrong today = type thing. What is happening to the building industry????

As a Women that was in property management for over 25 yeqrs and a bit of a tomboy... I know only the basic--but apparently a bit more than most of his other clients. So it's been crazy for me to see some of the stuff that they do--just to redo.

But again....I really do appreciate you and this site!

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 8:23PM
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"What is happening to the building industry????"

Unfortunatley, it is not that easy. Much of the problem stems from the society we have become. Nobody wants to pay for quality. Always looking for the bottom basement price results in a bottom basement product. Anybody with pride in his work and knowledge to do things right, while at the same time looking out for the customers best interest, is accused of charging too much.
"You want how much? Some guy on craigslist will do it for half that!"
I am getting tired of hearing that.
Don't misunderstand me, everybody needs to keep an eye on the bottom dollar. It should not be at the expense of quality or safety.
Some things you can't outsource to China. Problem is, consumers want to hire "skilled trade/craftsmen" to come into their home and perform their craft at "China prices".

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 9:27PM
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btharmy..... I totally agree. You should get what you pay for!! And that's why our house price went up almost $180,000 more than our first bid with this builder and 3 others. WE priced this house out for over an year--went over details with the builders we interviewed-- the type of home we want. We tried very hard to have Everything picked out and pre-planned. I'm talking more about workmanship and do overs!!
Slap it with what the client points out! that type of crap. Sad part is--He (the builder)doesn't seem to see the problem here! He just keep saying I will take care of it and he has so far. Now the county as rejected our back porch--yet another thing that has to be torn out and redone. This is one thing he is fighting the county ...had 3rd party look at --they said it needs torn down and now onto another 3rd party.
I just want a well built home!

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 11:08PM
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Ron Natalie

I have a 400A "main" sub panel (separate from the meter base) in my house, but it feeds several sub panels where the majority of the circuits are located.

None of the panels are the main disconnect. There's a separate 400A switch between the meter and the generator transfer switch.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 6:48AM
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Hey one more question. Builder is telling me we do NOT need to discuss dimmer switches while running the electrical???? He said that isn't a issue until we go to pick switch plates and covers. ??????

    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 10:17AM
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