2 breaker panels?

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bootsan

Member
Location
Lakewood, WA
First I hope this is the right forum. I am a home inspector in Washington State and have just finished inspecting a home and found the following. The home used to be a duplex, it was renovated and made into a single family unit. There are still 2 breaker boxes with seperate meters. Is this an issue that I need to have a licensed electrician evaluate? My client was concerned about the 2 meters and receiving 2 bills each month. Code issue?

Thank-you
 

charlie

Senior Member
Location
Indianapolis
Re: 2 breaker panels?

Unless they are located next to each other (grouped), they are in violation of the Code. It may not take that much to remove one of them and feed the other one from the first.

Bottom line, yes, he should be in contact with an electrical contractor since the use of the structure has changed. :D
 

petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
Re: 2 breaker panels?

Originally posted by charlie:
Unless they are located next to each other (grouped), they are in violation of the Code. It may not take that much to remove one of them and feed the other one from the first.
Just curious why it would be a code violation to have 2 meters. I have heard of a fair number of people who have 2 meters.
 

don_resqcapt19

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Illinois
Occupation
retired electrician
Re: 2 breaker panels?

Pete,
230.2 Number of Services.
A building or other structure served shall be supplied by only one service unless permitted in 230.2(A) through (D).
Don
 

charlie b

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Seattle, WA
Occupation
Electrical Engineer
Re: 2 breaker panels?

It might not be a problem. When the building was a duplex, it is likely that the two meters each fed a separate panel, one panel for each of the two households. My question would be, what happened to the two panels during the renovation?

Do you still have two panels, each being fed from one of the two meters? If so, then (1) Yes, the customer would get two bills, and (2) It is a violation of 230.2.

But if one panel has been removed, so that all loads are powered by the other panel, OR if one of the panels has been configured to be sub-fed from the other, then 230.2 does not come into play. The building would only have one service, and it would have an unused extra meter on the wall. In this case, the homeowner should ask the utility to remove the unused meter.
 

bootsan

Member
Location
Lakewood, WA
Re: 2 breaker panels?

Thank-you all for the replies. 2 seperate drops, into 2 seperate meters feeding 2 seperate panels. They are within 5 feet of each other, but not connected. I will be recommending a review by a licensed electrician.

Again as always thank-you for the replies.
 

jimwalker

Senior Member
Location
TAMPA FLORIDA
Re: 2 breaker panels?

is there by chance a 2 hour wire rated wall between them ? if so it might be actually 2 buildings.
I have done this on several townhouse and they are seperate buildings joined together
 

bootsan

Member
Location
Lakewood, WA
Re: 2 breaker panels?

No seperation. I believe it used to be a large single family home then converted to an upstairs/downstairs duplex type home. Now someone has purchased it and converted it back to a single unit.
 

jimwalker

Senior Member
Location
TAMPA FLORIDA
Re: 2 breaker panels?

Having 2 meters might actually save them money as KW charges go up after so much usage.
I cant see any more danger than it had when it was 2 apartments

But i think it violates NEC

If it has 2 seperate risers then it is 2 services

If it has 1 riser maybe it could be argued that it is one service with 2 meters
 

charlie

Senior Member
Location
Indianapolis
Re: 2 breaker panels?

Having 2 meters might actually save them money as KW charges go up after so much usage.
Jim, that would make the serving electric utility different from all the other electric utilities in the country! We have a customer charge which covers the meter reading and maintenance of the service for each meter. Additionally, we charge the highest rate for the first step in the rate. The more you use, the less you get charged for the energy usage.

If a customer adds an extra meter for service to his garage, he will pay approximately $100 per year for the extra meter if he doesn't even use any energy. Generally, the energy he uses will cost him at our highest rate since he would normally use so little in a garage. :D
 

jimwalker

Senior Member
Location
TAMPA FLORIDA
Re: 2 breaker panels?

My Progress Energy bill this month.
customer charge $8.03
first 1000 kwh---1,000 kwh @ 4.42700 cents = 44.27
above 1,000 kwh --1514 kwh @ 5.42700 cents =82.16
fuel charge 2,514 kwh @ 3.45800 cents =86.93
total electric cost 221.39
gross receipts tax 5.68
total current bill = 227.07

thats how it is here just north of Tampa FL

And i am not convinced that this install is illegal

[ October 20, 2004, 05:01 PM: Message edited by: jimwalker ]
 
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