On a sub panel installation in a residential garage of 4 two wire branch circuits I say that the min feeder ampacity should be 60A. Based on the fact that the disconnecting means must be rated at 60 A by code. My co-worker says that it is based on the computed load and could be 40A or 50A. Please advise with code reference. Thanks
I would be more interested in a reference for the idea that a feeder to a sub panel has to be 60a. It would not have to be any more than the computed load as far as I know and that may easily be less than the combined breaker handle amps in the sub panel.
... but I amy owe someone an appology.
Re: min ampacity of feeder for sub panel 4 ckts#97859 04/06/0602:17 AM04/06/0602:17 AM
225.39 The feeder or branch-circuit disconnecting means shall have a rating not less than the load to be supplied, determined in accordance with parts 1 and 2 of article 220 for branch circuits, parts 3 or 4 of article 220 for feeders, or part 5 of article 220 for farm loads. In no case shall the rating be lower then specified in 225.39 (A)(B)(C)(D). (A) - One circuit Installation - does not apply to this thread (B) - two circuit Installation - Does not apply to this thread (C) - One Family Dwelling _ Does not apply to this thread (D) - ALL OTHERS. For all other installations( this is us) the FEEDER or branch-circuit Disconnecting means shall have a rating of NOT less than 60 amperes.
I read this as saying that the FEEDER must be at least 60 amperes because it states the FEEDER or branch-circuit DISCONNECTING means .... Isn't the the circuit breaker in the main panel the DISCONNECTING MEANS for this FEEDER ?
Re: min ampacity of feeder for sub panel 4 ckts#97863 04/07/0601:01 PM04/07/0601:01 PM
You have to read the NEC in context. You don't simply cherry pick words out of context. This section is titled "More than one building or other structure" and 225.39 is titled "rating of disconnect" (in that other building) so it does not refer to the breaker in the main building (see "location" in 225.32) or the ampacity of the feeder, only the disconnect in the "other" building. They just want to insure that you can safely disconnect the "other" building, under load, at that building if you need to.
[This message has been edited by gfretwell (edited 04-07-2006).]
Re: min ampacity of feeder for sub panel 4 ckts#97864 04/07/0602:06 PM04/07/0602:06 PM
George, I suppose I would have to hold my nose and approve one of those 60 a "pull out only" disconnects you see in HVAC units but I don't think I would actually want to pull one under load without PPE.
Re: min ampacity of feeder for sub panel 4 ckts#97866 04/08/0612:44 PM04/08/0612:44 PM
Yeah, Greg, I'd agree with you on the "hold my nose". I've been an inspector for 20 years and a contractor prior to that for 12 years. One of the toughest things I had to adjust to was that everyone has a different level of professionalism and some of them are not at the same level as I am but they still meet minimum code. Of course there are those who are really perfectionist and they exceed code by a wide margin making the inspectors job easier.