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How to Protect Electrical Service from Flood Zone

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    How to Protect Electrical Service from Flood Zone

    What is the highest mounting height for my Service Disconnect and Main Distribution Panels if the flood zone is 5ft high for a commercial space in a basement.

    There is a natural body of water be hide the building, so I tried to refer to Article 682, but I was little confused.

    #2
    Originally posted by BatmanisWatching1987 View Post
    What is the highest mounting height for my Service Disconnect and Main Distribution Panels if the flood zone is 5ft high for a commercial space in a basement.

    There is a natural body of water be hide the building, so I tried to refer to Article 682, but I was little confused.
    I don't think 682 applies to anything in said building.

    Only way you are going to protect this is with good water tight construction methods, and even then still are likely to need some drainage/pumping system with standby power, because you are not likely to keep it completely water tight.
    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

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      #3
      Thank you for the help.

      What code section would I need to look up for maximum height for panels and disconnect when in a flood zone?

      Comment


        #4
        I see you are in NJ. If you are in a flood zone the building code will have requirements for things like that.

        -Hal

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          #5
          Originally posted by BatmanisWatching1987 View Post
          Thank you for the help.

          What code section would I need to look up for maximum height for panels and disconnect when in a flood zone?
          Code or no code,iIf you have equipment in a basement and in a flood zone, isn't the basement (or at least the portion of it that is below grade) going to be below the flood line? Only way to assure it doesn't get flooded is drainage/pumping systems with back up power. Even then there is still some risk of failure and it floods anyway. This is not the same thing as putting equipment out in the open near a body of water like what would be covered in art 682 either. If you know the basement is going to be prone to flooding, other building codes may come into play. That once in a hundred years flooding of such a basement is not normally something we design for. If it happens more than once, then maybe a different design is a good idea whether there is codes driving it or not.
          I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

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            #6
            Your highest breaker can only be 6' 7" above the floor to the center of the switch.
            I can build anything you want if you draw a picture of it on the back of a big enough check.

            There's no substitute for hard work....but that doesn't mean I'm going to give up trying to find one.

            John Childress
            Electrical Inspector
            IAEI / CEI / C10
            Certified Electrical Inspector

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              #7
              Around here, your equipment must be above the flood zone. Some areas require flood level +2'. You mount it no lower than this, and someone needs to build platform and stairs to access the equipment.

              We don't have basements here.

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                #8
                You have houses on stilts!

                -Hal

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by cowboyjwc View Post
                  Your highest breaker can only be 6' 7" above the floor to the center of the switch.
                  Wasn't related to flooding potential, but ran an new service into an old boiler room in an old school building once, this room had additional steps to go even lower than the rest of the basement rooms. my incoming raceways entered bottom back wall of an I line panel, entering top portion of panel would have been too shallow burial depth though, well maybe not too shallow for NEC but not as deep as I wanted it to be, without setting bottom of panel lower than I wanted that to be. The compromise - penetrated the wall nearly 8 feet below grade- highest breakers were abovt 6' 7" so we build a raised deck at least the size of required working space in front of the panel.

                  This room originally had a huge steam boiler in it and is only reason it was built that way. Today there are two boilers in it, each about the size of a 2 drawer file cabinet.
                  I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

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                    #10
                    put equipment high enough and build a standing platform around the equipment for servicing.

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                      #11
                      Move it to a dryer climate?

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                        #12
                        Originally posted by sameguy View Post
                        Move it to a dryer climate?
                        OP is in NJ, you suggesting to put his equipment in AZ?
                        I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

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                          #13
                          Loooong home runs?

                          -Hal

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                            #14
                            Never said it would be cheap or easy!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Wire-Smith View Post
                              put equipment high enough and build a standing platform around the equipment for servicing.
                              I haven't done it, but I have seen pictures of equipment mounted this way, up high on platforms with stair access.

                              May be expensive up front, but at least you aren't replacing the panel and other electrical components every time it floods....

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