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    Panelboard cover gap

    I am responsible for inspecting an installation. The panelboard covers do not fit. When the outer door is open, there is a gap between the outer cover and the inner cover. I am sure this indicates the panel has not been installed correctly. I would like a code reference that requires this to fit tight. The gap is probably in excess of 1/8". It was more like a quarter inch and they tweaked it and I was sent pictures. Thank you for your help. This is a Siemens single phase 200A surface mount panelboard - new. The 800A panel in the basement also suffers from gaps - perhaps 1/16". Again, the problem was "corrected" and I was sent pictures. I will be going out next week. Thank you.

    #2
    Hi,
    Not sure if this will help with your question. Every panel I have worked with has a panel face that is adjustable to sit tight against the circuit breaker’s. Kind of like an extension ring for electrical device box that sits back into a wall. Have a great day.

    jim

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      #3
      Originally posted by jksmith82 View Post
      Hi,
      Not sure if this will help with your question. Every panel I have worked with has a panel face that is adjustable to sit tight against the circuit breaker’s. Kind of like an extension ring for electrical device box that sits back into a wall. Have a great day.

      jim
      Some have adjustment on the mounting of the panel in the cabinet to bring it forward if needed to fit the cover properly. Usually only need to adjust them if flush mounted and the front of cabinet is recessed a little.
      I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by dema View Post
        I am responsible for inspecting an installation. The panelboard covers do not fit. When the outer door is open, there is a gap between the outer cover and the inner cover. I am sure this indicates the panel has not been installed correctly. I would like a code reference that requires this to fit tight. The gap is probably in excess of 1/8". It was more like a quarter inch and they tweaked it and I was sent pictures. Thank you for your help. This is a Siemens single phase 200A surface mount panelboard - new. The 800A panel in the basement also suffers from gaps - perhaps 1/16". Again, the problem was "corrected" and I was sent pictures. I will be going out next week. Thank you.
        I don't know there is any code to cite here. 312.5(A) only applies to openings that conductors pass through. 110.12(A) is about the only other thing that maybe could be cited. Design of some of those covers isn't going to be completely closed at times, nothing in there that says how much gap is acceptable and IMO is a judgement call. I can show you N3R loadcenters with a 3/4" inch or so gap at the top, but outer cover won't hinge properly if they don't leave that much room, and there is no adjusting them, they are made that way.
        I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

        Comment


          #5
          Thank you. That helps.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by jksmith82 View Post
            Hi,
            Not sure if this will help with your question. Every panel I have worked with has a panel face that is adjustable to sit tight against the circuit breaker’s. Kind of like an extension ring for electrical device box that sits back into a wall. Have a great day.

            jim
            A perfect example of things most "electricians" fail to realize. I believe part of the reason is that very few actually read through the paperwork that comes with equipment, even once. Square D NF panels have four screws that thread in the corners, you screw them in further to bring the face of the guts out. I rarely see these screws installed.

            One of my favorite examples of this, and I use in in my apprenticeship class, is the instruction that all threaded connections in Bell boxes need Teflon tape or thread seal compound in order to be watertight. It is right there on the little piece of paper you remove from every box.


            I know what I don't know, and I know where to go to find it!

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Strathead View Post
              A perfect example of things most "electricians" fail to realize. I believe part of the reason is that very few actually read through the paperwork that comes with equipment, even once. Square D NF panels have four screws that thread in the corners, you screw them in further to bring the face of the guts out. I rarely see these screws installed.

              One of my favorite examples of this, and I use in in my apprenticeship class, is the instruction that all threaded connections in Bell boxes need Teflon tape or thread seal compound in order to be watertight. It is right there on the little piece of paper you remove from every box.
              You must buy your NF panels from some other company Mine always had a washer type nut that is supposed to go on the mounting studs before you mount the guts, if the guts need adjusted out you turn those nuts to move the "stop" further forward. If you don't install those nuts before mounting guts, you can't make that adjustment.

              I am aware of bell box requirements, but typically ignore them. If you have raceway entering top you likely to have condensation in the box no matter how well you seal threads. Drainage holes IMO are more important.
              I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

              Comment


                #8
                It's strange that you cannot have more than a 1/8" gap along the edge of the panel but there is no maximum distance that it can be set back.

                312.4 Repairing Noncombustible Surfaces. Noncombustible surfaces that are broken or incomplete shall be repaired so there will be no gaps or open spaces greater than 3 mm (1⁄8 in.) at the edge of the cabinet or cutout box employing a flush-type cover
                .
                Rob

                Moderator

                All responses based on the 2017 NEC unless otherwise noted

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by kwired View Post
                  You must buy your NF panels from some other company Mine always had a washer type nut that is supposed to go on the mounting studs before you mount the guts, if the guts need adjusted out you turn those nuts to move the "stop" further forward. If you don't install those nuts before mounting guts, you can't make that adjustment.

                  I am aware of bell box requirements, but typically ignore them. If you have raceway entering top you likely to have condensation in the box no matter how well you seal threads. Drainage holes IMO are more important.
                  Oops I just looked it up. That is NQ panelboards not NF panelboards I was referring to. Thanks for keeping me honest.


                  I know what I don't know, and I know where to go to find it!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Strathead View Post
                    Oops I just looked it up. That is NQ panelboards not NF panelboards I was referring to. Thanks for keeping me honest.
                    Same cabinets are used for both and panelboards mount in same fashion inside them. They also have same outer covers/trims that are sized for the cabinet. Only the inner cover is customized per the panelboard it fits on and comes as part of the panelboard, it always fits or something is bent, damaged, etc. Entire interior may need spaced out in flush installations that aren't quite flush so the outer cover will have a better fit.
                    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by kwired View Post
                      Same cabinets are used for both and panelboards mount in same fashion inside them. They also have same outer covers/trims that are sized for the cabinet. Only the inner cover is customized per the panelboard it fits on and comes as part of the panelboard, it always fits or something is bent, damaged, etc. Entire interior may need spaced out in flush installations that aren't quite flush so the outer cover will have a better fit.
                      Nope, here is the page from the Square D installation manual. The NF manual shows the thumb wheel you describe.
                      elevate.pdf


                      I know what I don't know, and I know where to go to find it!

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Strathead View Post
                        Nope, here is the page from the Square D installation manual. The NF manual shows the thumb wheel you describe.
                        [ATTACH]21218[/ATTACH]
                        I will be at site with a NF panel today. It is an outdoor cabinet so the door/trim situation is different, but has same interior panel mounting method as others I have done on indoor installs. I will try to remember to get a picture and post it later.

                        The majority of the ones I have installed are 400 amp, maybe something is different with them than with others? They still mount in the same cabinets as those are dependent on the length of cabinet needed more than what goes into them. I line can even use same cabinets for certain units (there are some that only allow one "column of breakers on one side of the bus), but most will require a wider cabinet.
                        I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by kwired View Post
                          I will be at site with a NF panel today. It is an outdoor cabinet so the door/trim situation is different, but has same interior panel mounting method as others I have done on indoor installs. I will try to remember to get a picture and post it later.

                          The majority of the ones I have installed are 400 amp, maybe something is different with them than with others? They still mount in the same cabinets as those are dependent on the length of cabinet needed more than what goes into them. I line can even use same cabinets for certain units (there are some that only allow one "column of breakers on one side of the bus), but most will require a wider cabinet.

                          The NF panelboards have a u shaped vertical channel and the thumbwheel behind it. The NQ boards have a z shaped vertical channel and a threaded hole that a 10-32 screw goes in to offset the back.


                          I know what I don't know, and I know where to go to find it!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by Strathead View Post
                            The NF panelboards have a u shaped vertical channel and the thumbwheel behind it. The NQ boards have a z shaped vertical channel and a threaded hole that a 10-32 screw goes in to offset the back.
                            I have installed more NF than NQ, I thought I remembered them being same thing, but maybe not. Some of the NQ were also 400 amp, and used the same 400 amp main breaker and main breaker kit (I think same kit, definitely same breaker) maybe 400 amp NQ is the same?
                            I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by dema View Post
                              I am responsible for inspecting an installation. The panelboard covers do not fit. When the outer door is open, there is a gap between the outer cover and the inner cover. I am sure this indicates the panel has not been installed correctly. I would like a code reference that requires this to fit tight. The gap is probably in excess of 1/8". It was more like a quarter inch and they tweaked it and I was sent pictures. Thank you for your help. This is a Siemens single phase 200A surface mount panelboard - new. The 800A panel in the basement also suffers from gaps - perhaps 1/16". Again, the problem was "corrected" and I was sent pictures. I will be going out next week. Thank you.
                              Try 314.20 I would consider the panel enclosure to be protecting the surrounding material from an arc or a spark the same as any junction box does. Youve also got 110.3 and 110.12 to argue if that one doesnt work.

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