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Old 09-07-2009, 11:45 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by spoonman View Post
Not to hijack but, have you guys that have MH seen a huge jump in your electric bill? About how much?
It's going to be a simply matter of math. Has the Aquarium as a whole increased my electric bill, YES!! but no hobby I have found that I enjoy is cheap.

I am going up about 300 watts I think. I pay 10.4 cents per kilowatt hour. Right now, It costs just under 10 cents per hour to run everything. It will cost about 14 cents an hour to run with the lights on. I need to pick up a kill-a-watt but I have actually been waiting until I get the new Neptune Apex controller. I think it has that feature is built right in.

In the grand scheme of things, if I would unplug laptops, computers and all those ghost appliances, I'd save more than enough to pay for it. When I see $600 plus electric bills here in North Texas in the summer, the couple extra $ in lights ain't gonna make a difference.

I am sure that the heat generated from these will require the AC to run more but again, it is common for the upstairs AC unit to run for 16 hours and the downstairs run for 20 hours during the dead of summer.
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Old 09-08-2009, 02:23 AM   #22
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No "my bad" needed. I am still in the thinking / planning phase of this. I went and looked at my load panel and it is full up anyways. Darn home builders, not leaving any extra room in there. Guess to do this now, I will have to add a second load panel. Something I have not done before but it's as good of time as any to read up on it. Will just have to figure out how to kill the incomming 240. Think I will have to do that at the meter panel.
Just switch some of the single load breakers to doubles until you have enough space for the extra runs.
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Old 09-08-2009, 05:38 AM   #23
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Just switch some of the single load breakers to doubles until you have enough space for the extra runs.
That would work fine for the extra circuits he needs. He mentioned two pole earlier which is a different animal all together because they occupy 2 breaker positions in the panel and are used for 220/240 feeds and are two different phases which I don't think he is looking for. If he wants to add a sub panel it's not necessary to remove the feed to the house to do it.
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Old 09-08-2009, 09:25 AM   #24
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I must have missed that "two pole"? I don't think he wants to run 220v, but yes that would be another animal altogether.
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Old 09-08-2009, 09:29 AM   #25
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I must have missed that "two pole"? I don't think he wants to run 220v, but yes that would be another animal altogether.
He can use a two pole 40 or 60 amp breaker to feed a sub panel if need be without having to remove the meter. But your Idea is better and much easier TC.
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:06 AM   #26
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Should cost you about $100 to add a 100 amp subpanel by yourself.

~$30 for a 12 slot sub panel
~$50 GFCI 100a breaker
~$10 6ft #2 SEC cable
~$10 misc breakers, connectors, etc

Mount the new breaker high up on the bus bar. You said you main panel is full already? If so, the toughest part will be rerouting some of that wiring to the new panel to make room for the breaker. Some municipalities frown on pigtailing in the main panel. Also keep in mind the breakers connect differently in the sub than they do in the main (may depend on the manufacturer I'm not sure, I just know mine did).

I just added a 100a 12 slot subpanel 2 weeks ago
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:18 AM   #27
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Should cost you about $100 to add a 100 amp subpanel by yourself.

~$30 for a 12 slot sub panel
~$50 GFCI 100a breaker
~$10 6ft #2 SEC cable
~$10 misc breakers, connectors, etc

Mount the new breaker high up on the bus bar. You said you main panel is full already? If so, the toughest part will be rerouting some of that wiring to the new panel to make room for the breaker. Some municipalities frown on pigtailing in the main panel. Also keep in mind the breakers connect differently in the sub than they do in the main (may depend on the manufacturer I'm not sure, I just know mine did).

I just added a 100a 12 slot subpanel 2 weeks ago
They sell lugs (Each lug will have two set screws connections each) to replace the ones in the existing panel so you can legally go from 1 panel to the next or create a pigtail as CaptainAhab had said with using bugs for the correct wire size then using rubber scotchpad tape to insulate/protect the bug. I would not recommend trying to squeeze another cable under the existing lug where you would have two wires under 1 lug as this would 1 be against code and 2 generate excessive heat at the connection which could lead to a fire.
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:26 AM   #28
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I believe most mains (mine did) come with the dual connection lug and the sub's w/ one. Easy to check though before u go shopping
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Old 09-08-2009, 11:10 AM   #29
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True. My house I put 2 200 amp services and both panel have the dual connections. The other important factor is that if he is going to tap the line side he has to make sure the wire matches, If the existing is copper then get copper or if aluminum get aluminum (The aluminum must be a larger gauge then copper for the same amperage). If this cannot be done they sell a dielectric grease that is used when dissimilar are used to prevent oxidation. If the connection is allowed to oxidize the connection will heat up over time.

If you just add a 100 amp breaker as CaptainAhab outlined none of the above is necessary.
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Old 09-08-2009, 12:41 PM   #30
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Thank you all for the great ideas. The wiring is copper. When I was talking about the dual pole, I was making reference to the fact that one breaker gets power from one leg and the other from the other, not running 220. I remember several years ago reading something about the fact that if a GFCI shares a common, then they have to run on seperate phases. I will have to pull the load center cover off tonight to see what I have inside and what the best route will be. I can't even tell you if the builder used duals or not and how much room I would have to rearrange things. I think code only allows for a max of 30 (I think) appliance/lights breakers and that in effect may put me over.
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