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#194533 - 06/07/10 03:50 PM Outdoor services in Alaska?
mikesh Offline
Member

Registered: 06/07/06
Posts: 614
Loc: Victoria, BC, Canada
The Canadian Electrical code is very restrictive with regard to allowing a service to be placed out doors. I have noted the NEC does allow this.
One of the biggest objections is related to breaker performance when it is cold outside.
What about in the state of Alaska? Are there specific amendments to the NEC for Alaska? Are all the branch breakers allowed outside too?
I have seen test data that shows ambient can effect the operation of breakers and that 135% overloads do not clear in the prescribed time in the breaker standards.
Tell me what you know about this.
Thanks

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#194538 - 06/09/10 03:23 AM Re: Outdoor services in Alaska? [Re: mikesh]
Tesla Offline
Member

Registered: 06/16/04
Posts: 1280
Loc: Sacramento, CA
The local AHJ will insist on placing the panel some place inside. This is done even in Truckee, California.

Truckee is about a mile high in the Sierras on I-80.

Snow is on the ground typically into June. Snow flurries may happen in July. First frost will come in late August, perhaps September.

So, the meter socket faces outside -- and the rest of the Service faces inside a heated garage or the distribution panel is in the center of the home.

My sister's place used the laundry closet. ( No longer allowed. )

The MAIN is placed to the outside so that the fire department can kill it. It is robust enough for the cold.

Alaska surely has its own area-specific standards.

But you can see, no one wants branch breakers that cannot be accessed without braving extreme elements!

BTW Sq D makes a residential panel with the above traits as an all-in-one: MAIN and meter to the outside--panel & breakers to the inside.
_________________________
Tesla

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#194539 - 06/09/10 12:07 PM Re: Outdoor services in Alaska? [Re: Tesla]
ghost307 Offline
Member

Registered: 05/09/05
Posts: 876
Loc: Chicago Illinois USA
Imagine having to brave the Alaska weather when the breaker in an outdoor panel for the bathroom lights trips while you're taking a shower.

BRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!
_________________________
Ghost307

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#194540 - 06/09/10 03:18 PM Re: Outdoor services in Alaska? [Re: ghost307]
mikesh Offline
Member

Registered: 06/07/06
Posts: 614
Loc: Victoria, BC, Canada
Tesla
If I understand you, Alaska allows the main breaker or fused disconnect outside with the meter, but the panel and branch breakers must be located in a heated portion of the house?
Square D makes a panel that actualy does that?
It seems that would just transmit a lot of cold air through the panel into the house?

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#194591 - 06/11/10 10:15 PM Re: Outdoor services in Alaska? [Re: mikesh]
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
Member

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5299
Loc: Blue Collar Country
Tesla is slightly misleading.

Truckee is near Lake Tahoe, which is even higher, colder, and gets even more snow. Tahoe is also shared between Nevada and California.

In either case, there are many installations where the breakers are outside - especially where mobile homes and RV's are connected to pedestals.

It is true that the farther breakers are from the 'calibration' temperature, the less their performance matches the curves. Heat makes them trip sooner, cold slows them down - just like derating wire.

Of greater concern, IMO, are conditions that might lead to moisture condensing within the breakers.

Keep in mind that most of Alaska is a maritime environment, rather than arctic.

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#194592 - 06/11/10 11:41 PM Re: Outdoor services in Alaska? [Re: renosteinke]
Tesla Offline
Member

Registered: 06/16/04
Posts: 1280
Loc: Sacramento, CA
Mike...

The Sq D product is clearly designed for the garage.
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