Floating the neutral on Eaton service panel

s-park-er

Member
Location
Oroville, CA
Occupation
Building mechanic - specialty problem-solver.
Hey all, had a project given to me needs some background - here's the "skinny".

Major remodel of an older home in a semi-rural area of NorCal, original plan was to land util power at the house on an Eaton HP404040SHA panel. THEN, POCO went through and hardened the distribution, and said that they did not want to do such a long drop from the road.
New Eaton panel (similar model) was placed at roadside and 4" conduits installed to house, and stubs to future shop (both 200A). Inbound conduit and rough-in has already been set in place at the house. Problem is this panel has a thoroughly bonded neutral bus; actually mounted to back of case, so the bonding is in violation now.

Is there any way, or maybe a kit to float the neutral bus in this panel so the EGS can be kept unbonded until the service entrance at the road? Changing out this panel would be a pretty good expense and hassle!
 

Buck Parrish

Senior Member
Location
NC & IN
Is it temp? If so this should be fine. You'll just need to add a bigger neutral lug. The one pictured is a Eaton product.
Then use the existing one as your equipment grd. Un-less I'm missing some thing.
eeelneutralbuckpic.jpg
 

Little Bill

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Tennessee NEC:2017
Occupation
Electrician
Unless you can get the inspector/AHJ to sign-off on it, I'm afraid you have no choice but to change the panel. Maybe what Buck posted would work if they would approve it.
 

s-park-er

Member
Location
Oroville, CA
Occupation
Building mechanic - specialty problem-solver.
Unless you can get the inspector/AHJ to sign-off on it, I'm afraid you have no choice but to change the panel. Maybe what Buck posted would work if they would approve it.
Yeah, this is definitely going to take some conversation time... Going to call Eaton tomorrow - wish me luck getting through...
 
That little sticker in the panel that says "suitable for use as service equipment only" if the inspector chooses to enforce that.
I don't think we know if it has a "suitable for use only as service equipment" label.

Of course in a situation like this we are often at the mercy of an inspector just throwing out a 110.3(B), however there is some ambiguity around that label, and appears to just mean that the mbj is factory installed without any prohibition on removing it. See Don's post #8 here:

 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
I don't think we know if it has a "suitable for use only as service equipment" label.

Of course in a situation like this we are often at the mercy of an inspector just throwing out a 110.3(B), however there is some ambiguity around that label, and appears to just mean that the mbj is factory installed without any prohibition on removing it. See Don's post #8 here:

I use pump panels as non service equipment all the time even though they are marked suitable only for use as service equipment.

Circuit they are applied to has no neutral conductor and I just land EGC's on the neutral bar.

I can get pump panels for less $$$ than a combination starter so why not? Don't always need the hand off auto switch that is already installed but it still works.
 

Little Bill

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Tennessee NEC:2017
Occupation
Electrician
I don't think we know if it has a "suitable for use only as service equipment" label.

Of course in a situation like this we are often at the mercy of an inspector just throwing out a 110.3(B), however there is some ambiguity around that label, and appears to just mean that the mbj is factory installed without any prohibition on removing it. See Don's post #8 here:


Well, I never saw a metermain that wasn't factory bonded and suitable for service only.
 
Well, I never saw a metermain that wasn't factory bonded and suitable for service only.
At first it wasn't clear to me that the panel in question was a meter main, however after rereading the OP a few times I think that is the case. I still stand by the fact that UL says this phrase just means the there is a factory bond without specifically prohibiting adding an isolated bar or removing the bond. Obviously this opens the door to a fight with the inspector.
 

s-park-er

Member
Location
Oroville, CA
Occupation
Building mechanic - specialty problem-solver.
So, I got through to Eaton and they said that they don't make any neutral bus kits for their meter panels, and they do not recommend proceeding without AHJ sign-off.
Spoke to the AHJ, he said that since the label states "suitable only for use as service equipment", I would require a listing inspector to provide recertification. I'm pretty sure that will exceed the price of a new panel, and possibly even the cost of hiring a government agency to install it!
Anybody have a 200 amp, 40-space 3R panel you want to sell cheap? 😂
 
So, I got through to Eaton and they said that they don't make any neutral bus kits for their meter panels, and they do not recommend proceeding without AHJ sign-off.
Spoke to the AHJ, he said that since the label states "suitable only for use as service equipment", I would require a listing inspector to provide recertification. I'm pretty sure that will exceed the price of a new panel, and possibly even the cost of hiring a government agency to install it!
Anybody have a 200 amp, 40-space 3R panel you want to sell cheap? 😂
So out of curiosity, was your plan to just put a meter jumper plate on the meter main by the house?
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Hey all, had a project given to me needs some background - here's the "skinny".

Major remodel of an older home in a semi-rural area of NorCal, original plan was to land util power at the house on an Eaton HP404040SHA panel. THEN, POCO went through and hardened the distribution, and said that they did not want to do such a long drop from the road.
New Eaton panel (similar model) was placed at roadside and 4" conduits installed to house, and stubs to future shop (both 200A). Inbound conduit and rough-in has already been set in place at the house. Problem is this panel has a thoroughly bonded neutral bus; actually mounted to back of case, so the bonding is in violation now.

Is there any way, or maybe a kit to float the neutral bus in this panel so the EGS can be kept unbonded until the service entrance at the road? Changing out this panel would be a pretty good expense and hassle!
How long is the supply?

I'd be pushing for getting the source closer vs larger secondary conductors most cases.
Voltage fluctuations from even fairly light to moderate loads will cause LED light sources to flicker.
 
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