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Apartment question #200413 03/31/11 05:39 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 2
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dodge Offline OP
New Member
Owner of an apartment building has been told he needs to upgrade his apartment panels because they have no main breakers.

We're having difficulty locating the rule regarding this in the code book.

Anyone know which section/# it is?

Thanks.

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Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200414 03/31/11 06:24 PM
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Posts: 7,233
HotLine1 Offline
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Dodge:
Welcome to ECN, from one of the 'Jersey Guys'! One of our Canadian Members will help you out!


John
Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200415 03/31/11 06:58 PM
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mikesh Offline
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6-206 has been interpreted to mean in the suite. Especially if the main is in a room not readily accessible to the Tennant's. IE 24/7/365 without having to awaken or call in a caretaker first.
Having said that Who ordered an upgrade? In what province and under what regulation?

Generically if the installation is well maintained and still adequately serves the purpose under which it was approved then there are no requirements to upgrade. see 2-300 to 2-322. Obviously a service upgrade could trigger the Main breaker thing in the suites.

It can be pretty hard to force upgrades without some other legislation besides the current CEC.

In BC for example most Knob and Tube replacements are forced by the Insurance industry who may also require a minimum 100 amp service. These upgrades are not mandated by the CEC at least not if the K&T is in good condition and meets the needs of the residents.

Same with a service size. A modern home must have at least a 100 amp service but in 1963 the 60 was code compliant and if the loads did not change what could justify the upgrade? Only poor maintenance, failure of the service, or a load increase or a law being passed.

Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200416 03/31/11 07:04 PM
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twh Offline
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You only need a combination panel if the apartment panel is a main service with the neutral grounded. If it comes from a meter bank, the main breaker for the panel is at the meters. If you see a combination panel in an apartment it's because they sometimes cost less.

Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200417 03/31/11 07:35 PM
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Posts: 947
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twh Offline
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The panel in the suit isn't a service. The service box is the one in the electrical room with where the neutral is grounded. Try grounding the neutral in the apartment panel and the inspector will call it a feeder circuit. Anyway, that interpretation didn't make it into appendix I, so it's just a regional thing.

Re: Apartment question [Re: mikesh] #200418 03/31/11 08:35 PM
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dodge Offline OP
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The company that owns the apartment building wants the upgrade...we're just giving them a quote for doing it. The owner has been told 2 different things by 2 different companies and has asked me to show them the rule pertaining to this. We're in BC - our first large apartment building job.... Are the panels required to be upgraded with main breakers? If the panels need to be upgraded with main breakers, is that going to require the rest of the apartments to be brought up to code?

Thanks for the responses and the welcome.


Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200422 03/31/11 11:28 PM
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twh Offline
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I wonder if mikesh has an interpretation under Appendix C9.

Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200453 04/01/11 05:51 PM
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mikesh Offline
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From directive D-E3 070302 6 Revision 1

I offered 6-206 but the Directive refers to 14-406 which requires a control device to be readily accessible.

This directive can be found on the BCSA website.
It answers dodge's question directly as he is in BC so this applys. A combo panel is required. sorry for the wrong rule I referred to in my first try at this question.

Re: Apartment question [Re: dodge] #200455 04/01/11 07:29 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 947
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twh Offline
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That's a funny directive. It states:
Quote
14-106 requires overcurrent devices to be readily accessible. Readily accessible is interpreted to be in the occupancy that the circuits serve.
How does putting an overcurrent device in the suite make the overcurrent device in the main electrical room accessible? Does that interpretation not specifically prohibit putting any overcurrent device in the electrical room, including the one that protects the feeder to the suite?


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