Originally Posted by AlphaC
the main concern is the Stab lok type.
I'm surprised your insurance company allows your condo board to keep that. The Federal Pacific company has gone out of business as well.
It's unreasonable for them to disallow an upgrade to 100A service. A 60A panel only is good for maybe 3-4 breakers (15-20A) and at least in the USA , the NEC code requires the bathroom and kitchen to have dedicated 20A ones.
edit: the specifics are Two (min) 20-amp circuits for kitchen countertop receptacles , One 20-amp circuit for the laundry receptacles (may not be needed if you don't have laundry facilities inside your condo), One 20-amp circuit for the bathroom receptacles
& A minimum of 100 Amp 3-wire service for a single-family dwelling unit. NEC 230.79
I suspect it has to do with the building being built in 1961, and winds up falling into grandfathered policies due to it having previously been rentals that were then converted to condos. As for our condo board, I have nothing nice to say so I won't. Condo management? Same thing, and I have a LOT of nasty things to say about them.
As for breakers, they have seven in total... Five 15A breakers (with some weird assumptions made for them, including one of the living room ones being shared across three separate plugs, and one of the kitchen ones being shared not only with one side of the "dining room" but also the fridge, and I think the kitchen lights too... And one that it's sole purpose is the outlet outside that I keep turned off), and a double breaker (30A) for the stove.
Hence why I want at least 100A service to the place, because I want each kitchen outlet on their own circuit, the fridge on it's own, and the two dining room ones being separate would be nice too. Oh right, and four independent ones in the living room, plus the bedroom being on it's own as well as the bathroom on it's own. Essentially, I want the entire place rewired, so it would just be easier to get a house.
Condo management won't even let us have access to our main breakers, as they're locked in the utility room, and if it happens to be tripped during an "inconvenient time" they expect you to wait upwards of a full day to have power turned back on to your suite. Did I mention they apparently only have one guy that can get into the utility room despite managing something like 600 buildings in the city?
Originally Posted by Diffident
Being a condo, it most likely isn't possible to upgrade the service since an increase in wire size to the panel would be required. I don't know how the condo is setup, but i'm guessing, to pull new wire, it would have to go through other tenet space. I doubt the wire is in conduit, and if it is, it would only be sized to the wire that's in it. The panel itself could easily be replaced with a new 60 amp panel, Square D would be my choice. A 60 amp panel handles more than 3-4 breakers. Though the panel is single phase there are 2 phases of 60 amps each, plus when doing a service calculation not all circuits are calculated at full load.
I suspect the wiring would probably have to go through at least one of my neighbours before reaching the utility room, but there's a slim chance it could be accessed via the laundry room... It would all depend on how it was built. No idea if conduit was used or not, as it's a wooden framed three story building that was completed back in 1961.
All I know is that I'd love to have a bit more flexibility with things, ESPECIALLY with having a dedicated circuit for my benching rig (see previous list of what I want to do for the electrical in my place in my reply to AlphaC). Dream home will have five or even six 20A circuits dedicated to my benching area simply because I want to be able to do 2-card SLI subzero benching and have the possibility of using a rotary phase exchange on at least one card and the CPU when not using "easier" methods of subzero benching like dry ice or LN2. In this place I'd be happy with just two circuits for such and then dedicated ones for the HTPC, and each gaming rig, but that's me being somewhat of a dreamer in the long run ^_^;;;
Originally Posted by 4thKor
Insufficient power can be a real hassle. People don't realize that everything has to start with the incoming service. I've had clients want me to put 200 amp boxes in with just 100 coming in. Hard to make them understand that it won't work. Legally, anyway. I've seen things in this part of the country that would make your hair stand on end. I'm sure you've seen some "stuff" too though.
Yeah, it's soooooo annoyingly painful to have to try and balance things.... If I have the crock pot going, I turn BOINC off on my rig just so I'm "safe" when making coffee... And I don't even boil water and grind my beans at the same time as a "just in case" measure despite them being on different circuits.
tl;dr: Whoever did the electrical in my place originally made a LOT of assumptions back in the day. One person living in it, one television, and barely any accessories I swear.