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#92684 - 04/01/05 09:24 PM Panel size  
eswets  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 55
Lansing, IL, USA
A friend of mine asked me to look at the electrical on his rental house he is wanting to sell. Wants to sell the house right away and want the electrical to be safe and not have a home inspector lose the sale by finding electrical problems. The main panel has eight breakers. 2 are the main (100 amp) and the remaining six are what feeds the house. I thought that there is a code about minimun breakers but I cant find any in the code. What should I tell my friend. He doesn't want to spend any money if he doesn't have to.

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#92685 - 04/01/05 09:43 PM Re: Panel size  
Roger  Offline
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 1,716
There is no "minimum" amount of breakers so to speak. In modern codes there are mandatory circuits which would equate to a certain number of breakers, see articles 210 and 220.

It sounds as though this is an older house and even with a home inspector being involved he should only note true deficiency's.

The H.I. may cite something he thinks is a code problem, but you as an EC can step in if it is not something that was required when the house was built.

The H.I. may make some recommendations, such as GFCI's and these recommendations can and should be considered.


#92686 - 04/01/05 09:46 PM Re: Panel size  
e57  Offline
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
It all depends on when the house was built? At one point it was common to only have one 20 for the kitchen for the iron, and one 15 for the lights. Check to see if the house was built to past codes, and safely. Upgrading to todays code, is not nessarary to sell the house. I love these "Home Inspectors", who rant on about 2-wire "un-grounded outlets", as they weren't always required, and not nessesarilly a safety hazard. IMO

Many people when buying a house like to just move in. Not renovate... And pay more for that! Some people want to buy in cheap, and dont mind doing some up-grades. Its a fine balance. If the cost of renovation or up-grades is lower than the return for a "move-in house", that is money made, not spent. Its a gamble....

Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason

#92687 - 04/05/05 04:21 PM Re: Panel size  
DougW  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
North Chicago, IL
When I bought my house, it had a 16 space panel with 2 for the main, then 4 others, IIRC. One was the kitchen, one was the basement and living room and hall lights, one was the ceiling fixtures on the first floor and the whole 2nd floor (3BR 1 bath), and 1 for the boiler.

It seems back in the 80's the City got a federal grant to upgrade all the old 60A services - the HO took advantage of it, but had the upgrade stop at the 1st 1900 that they found - the "new" THHN transitioned to old rubber/linen wire there. Icky.

Seen several old houses with 60A and no more than 6 circuits - it also depends on ft2.

I remember a code ref about "conductors feeding a 20A circuit" in the services section - you may be remebering this as well, but it's the only ref to a minimum number of breakers.

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