Electrical Panel Framing

Old 11-12-18, 05:11 PM
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Electrical Panel Framing

(x-post in Stackexchange)I'm concerned about the best way to frame around it to maintain the required lateral working space and having trouble interpreting the working space requirements for breaker panels in real life.

Context: I'm in Northern Virginia and refinishing my basement (1952 CMU masonry duplex). The breaker box was replaced by the electrician and unfortunately the panel's location is in the corner of the living space.

Per the photo, my plan was to add a stud at the edge of the insulation and frame around the 2x4s, though not sure how to work around those wires for the headboard. Once I frame the other wall and account for drywall, the panel would be on the far left side of the working space which would extend to about half-way between the two studs visible on right. Given how the panel was mounted by the electrician who replaced it (i.e. on plywood and pretty close to the corner, so not a lot of depth), we are planning to have it "recessed" behind an access door. By my measurement, the breaker panel door would be 1/2" behind the access door. Would the access door need to span that total space exposing all the studs?

Before people ask, the XPS is cut to the edges of the plywood the panel is mounted on and is taped along the edges.
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Old 11-13-18, 08:55 AM
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If you end up going with an access door, it only needs to be large enough so that you can fully remove the panel cover. It does not need to be the full 30" clearance width required by NEC as long as the decorative door can be fully opened or removed. For example a bifold style door is not allowed because it would obstructs the clear space when opened, but a cabinet door on full swing hinges is OK because it can be opened flat to the wall.

It also looks like you'll need to box out a small chase above the panel since that bundle of cables runs under the joist instead of through it.

With the panel 1/2" recessed behind the finished wall surface, you can't frame right up to it, but you can get close as long as the panel cover can be removed. I would consider having the power company come out and pull the meter for 10 minutes. While the guy has a soda, you can unbolt the panel from the concrete, pull it out so it will be flush to the drywall 1/2 proud of the studs, then remount it to studs on either sides. There are mounting slots on the side of the panel you can zip a couple screws in. That way you can finish the drywall right up to the edge of the panel and just use the cover as it.

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