Fuse box upgrade


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Old 04-13-18, 12:16 PM
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Fuse box upgrade

Hi,

I have an older home with a main circuit breaker panel that feeds the house and garage and a 220 60 amp sub panel that is a fuse box just for my water heater. I want to convert the fuse box to a circuit breaker and split a new sub panel to wire a second 220 outlet in the garage. Can I just add a sub box panel to accommodate both the water heater and the additional outlet? Any advice and suggestions would be helpful. See attached picture.
Thank you
 
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Last edited by PJmax; 04-13-18 at 03:57 PM. Reason: removed coding tags
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Old 04-13-18, 12:56 PM
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How to insert images: How to insert pictures.
 
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Old 04-13-18, 02:26 PM
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As you guessed it , I am a bit simple and a little dumb.

If you go slow and use small words, I would like to get your input.
What is the best way to talk back and forth on the subject?

This is my first foray into the forum world. I usually can figure most things out with YouTube vids. This being my homes electrical I want to be a bit more thorough.
Thanks for the response sir.

Never mind!!
Maybe you should change your signature to something that does not look like a response to a question in a thread.
 
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Old 04-13-18, 04:12 PM
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nar.... that is Rays signature line. It is not aimed directly at you.

You have a 240v 60A FUSE type sub panel currently feeding the water heater. You want to replace that fuse box with a new circuit breaker panel so that you can refeed the water heater and a new 240V receptacle.

What size breaker is in the main panel feeding that fused sub panel ?
Depending on the amount of wires... 3 or 4.... coming from the main panel..... that new sub panel you install may only be able to be used for 240v loads.

A picture of the inside of the main panel and one of the fuse panel would be helpful.
 
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Old 04-16-18, 03:03 PM
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Thank you for the response Pete. I am a bit green in here, so forgive me in advance. I will check on that tonight and take a pic. I was under the impression the line feeding the fuse box was off the main, as i do not have a circuit breaker for the heater other than the fuse box. I will confirm that. James
 
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Old 04-16-18, 05:29 PM
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You could also just run two circuits from the service panel, one to the water heater and one to the new receptacle . In addition to Pete's questions , do you have space for 4 breakers in the panel?
 
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Old 04-19-18, 03:08 PM
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So after finally looking under the hood. I do not have any empty spots for more breakers , best I can tell. I do how ever think the line to the WH fuse box is off the main. With that, does my scenario work to just replace fuse box with a breaker for both the WH and and additional 220 outlet? I just have to turn off main and do work "properly" and have it work?
 
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Old 04-19-18, 05:41 PM
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Yes, Removing the double lugged wires on the main breaker is job #1. This should be taken care of before any other work is done.

There is a two pole breaker on the lower left that is off. You could remove that breaker and install a 60 or 100 amp breaker to feed a new sub panel. Even if that circuit is being used you could still relocate that, or some other circuit to the sub panel, to make room for adding the sub panel.

If I was doing it I would remove the circuits running to the left and put the sub panel there. Then, install thous circuits into the sub panel.
 
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Old 04-20-18, 10:37 AM
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Thank you.&lt;br /&gt;<br />

&lt;br /&gt;<br />

That bottom left breaker is for my AC unit. Not sure why I turned it off and kept it off. Just to make sure I understand, I can run a sub panel off of an existing breaker location with the proper breakers and sub panel space. In order to remove the wh lines that are joined to the main breaker, I assume I have to have the main power outside turned off to do that? See attached diagram to confirm I get what you are suggesting. Thank you again.
 
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Last edited by nar1288; 04-20-18 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 04-20-18, 02:18 PM
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The main lugs in the panel are typically hot all the time unless the meter is pulled. If this is true removing the second wires from the lugs is hazardous without the power turned off. Your pictures are not clear enough to see if this is the case.
 
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Old 04-20-18, 02:39 PM
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Your diagram appears to be correct. Another option would be to relocate two smaller circuits (two single pole breakers) to make room for the sub panel breaker and leave the A/C breaker where it is.

You will need to install a larger breaker to feed the sub panel. I would recommend 100 amps so it would have the same capacity as the main panel.

Also, the wires coming from the meter (if that is where they come from) are unfused.
 
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Old 05-18-18, 12:38 PM
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I have made a little bit of progress and wanted to get some clarifications on a few things if possible. I have since gotten the builders permit and registered with my electric company and an inspector. Unfortunately I cannot seem to get a few questions answered by either.

My main panel does not have a ground bar but rather two neutral bars bonded to the panel, both grounds and neutrals are on both bars.The outside main panel is grounded to the ground literately with a wire and rode. The main wire going into my main panel is only a three wire, two hots and a neutral. My question is! I have gotten mixed info on if I would need to run a jumper ground wire from the neutral bar to the added ground bar I want to attach to free up spaces and clean it up. Or to just attached the ground bar to the panel as the panel is essentially grounded to the main panel outside?
Thank you
 
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Old 05-18-18, 03:40 PM
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Technically.... when the ground is brought to the outside disconnect.... the inside panel is considered a sub panel and requires four wires.

Things are done a little differently in different jurisdictions and that was done a while back.

To the present..... your inside panel has combination neutral/ground bars. Keep your neutrals on those two bars and move grounds to additionally installed bars. The bars get screwed to the panel with self tapping machine screws. No further wiring is needed between them and the current existing bars.
 
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Old 05-18-18, 04:01 PM
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Excellent! Thank you Pete.
 
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Old 05-18-18, 04:39 PM
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I would bet that panel cannot be unbonded and is service equipment only.
 
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Old 05-18-18, 06:28 PM
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I would bet that panel cannot be unbonded and is service equipment only.
Quite possibly.

The only thing that throws a kink in the works is it appears that bar is insulated from the panel with a phenolic strip.
 
 

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