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Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 947
twh Offline OP
How far from where the service conduit enters a residential building can the panel be placed?

Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 23
The AHJ in my area says "a reasonable distance" When pressed for a number he says a reasonable distance is 15 feet or less. Any further than that he requires disco/over current protection on the outside of the building. As far as a maxium with OCP he had no maximum.

Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 98
Likes: 1
Originally Posted by twh
How far from where the service conduit enters a residential building can the panel be placed?

6-206 says: "As close as practical to the point where the consumer's service conductors enter the building."

What's the situation that you're looking at?


Joined: May 2003
Posts: 1,157
we have had to bury teck and encase it in concrete to get around a chimmy on the out side to get to a panel location

Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 947
twh Offline OP
This is a Saskatchewan interpretation, from the SaskPower web site:
6-206 (1)(e) Service Equipment:
As close as practicable shall not exceed 6 conduit meters. Where the service box or other consumerís service equipment is located beyond 6 conduit meters from the point where the service conductors enter the building, the conductors shall be run in threaded rigid metal conduit for the entire length.
I like the definite rule, but wonder about the validity of an interpretation. At least they put it in writing.

The real situation is that a carpenter built a house and planned the meter location and panel location based on this rule. However, the panel could be in the basement bedroom and be closer to the meter. It could be practicable to have the panel in the bedroom.

So I put the panel in the furnace room, as far as 6m of conduit would reach. That seemed practicable in light of the interpretation.

I know I could phone the inspector, but I think I should be able to rely on my own judgement. I have a code book too. Anyway, I'm not sure that the inspector should be making the call and doing the inspection. It's too much like inspecting his own work.

What is the interpretation of practicable where you are?

Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 29
On the exterior is can be as far as you want basically...once you enter the building this is what you get...

Originally Posted by "OESC 24th Ed"
(1) Consumerís service equipment location

Rule 6-206 requires that the service box or other consumerís service equipment shall be as close as practicable to the point where the consumerís service conductors enter the building.

Where judgment is required about ďas close as practicable", the following may be used for guidance on the maximum length of run:

(a) 1.5 m into rooms or areas of combustible construction; or

(b) 7.5 m into other areas provided: the wiring method is rigid conduit, electrical metallic tubing (EMT) or a cable with a continuous metal sheath or interlocking armour and the conduit or cable is mechanically protected where it is within 2 m of the floor.

That is the Ontario perspective.


Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 106
I just built my own house and being an electrician I wired it as well. my load center is approx 25 feet from the meter base with no over current protection outside. How did it pass you may ask? Since my mechanical room is not on an exterior wall I ran my conduit through a sleve I put in the foundation (garage entrance side) and came up in the garage at the wall I needed to go through, then LB into mechanical room. My maximum conduit distance exposed is around 2.5 feet. Even though the service runs under my garage pad, it is not considered in the house yet.
PS. I used an expansion fitting before the conduit went underground. My conduit run was complete so I did not want settling dirt to rip my meter base off the wall!!! I also have about 200' of spare 3/4" conduit runs (6 runs) and 60' of 1" as well for future all stubed above the garage floor and through foundation below grade. Just in case!

Last edited by mr_electrician; 03/10/10 02:10 PM.

Never trust an electrician with no eyebrows!!
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 613
In Victoria it is literal. As close as practicable. If I can find a legal location for a panel IE not a bathroom, coal bin, closet, crawlspace, and the contractor choses a place further into the building then it fails or gets encased in 2 inches of concrete. BC has a Directive on section 6 that expands on this but the absolute limit without concrete is 1.5 meter subject to that location being as close as practicable.

Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 947
twh Offline OP
This is from a 2009 Standata from Alberta. I'm guessing it's their interpretation of reasonable:
Rule 6-206 Consumer's Service Equipment Location: Length of Service Conductors in Buildings Rule 6-206(1)(e) requires that service equipment be located as close as practicable to the point where the service conductors enter the building. Rule 6-208 outlines where the conductors must be located. Both rules recognize that service conductors must enter the building to make connection to the service equipment. While it is generally agreed that in the interest of safety the unfused conductors within the building should be as short as possible, this distance is not clear. A recommended practice in Alberta is to limit the length of service conductor in the building to 3m. Where this is not practicable, service conductors may extend further inside the building provided they are mechanically protected in rigid metal conduit. The maximum distance for service conductors inside a building should not exceed 7.5 m.

I thought the rule about rigid conduit was an odd interpretation, but 2 inches of conduit is an even stranger interpretation of "as close as practicable".

Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 402
It's 2 " of concrete not conduit. The concrete makes it fire safe since the conductors are not fused.

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