Jump to content
Did you know?
  • The original Rudolph did not have a red nose. In that day and age, red noses were seen as an indicator of chronic alcoholism and Montgomery Ward didn’t want him to look like a drunkard. To complete the original picture, he was almost named Reginald or Rollo.
  • The Christmas wreath was originally hung as a symbol of Jesus. The holly represents his crown of thorns and the red berries the blood he shed.
  • The three traditional colors of most Christmas decorations are red, green and gold. Red symbolizes the blood of Christ, green symbolized life and rebirth, and gold represents light, royalty and wealth.
  • Tinsel was invented in 1610 in Germany and was once made of real silver.
  • The oldest artificial Christmas trees date back to the late 1800s and were made of green raffia (think grass hula skirts) or dyed goose feathers. Next the Addis Brush Company used their machinery that wove toilet brushes to create pine-like branches for artificial Christmas trees that were less flammable and could hold heavier decorations.
  • ‘Jingle Bells’ – the popular Christmas song was composed by James Pierpont in Massachusetts, America. It was, however, written for thanksgiving and not Christmas.
  • Coca-Cola was the first company that used Santa Claus during the winter season for promotion.
  • Hallmark introduced their first Christmas cards in 1915.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
Sign in to follow this  
RichardH

Using Tandem Breakers

Recommended Posts

I have another question (I am full fo them today). I am going to need 6 dedicated 20 amp circuits. I thought instead of installing a sub panel I could replace 6 breakers with 20 amp tandem breakers and get the 6 circuits I need.

I want to make sure I am not breaking any codes and I am not sure what the codes are on Tadem Breakers (if you can have to many, etc.). Any disadvantages of running Tandem Breakers?

Below is a picture of my Main Panel right now. There are some single 20 amp breakers that get used very rarely (like powering a lamp in one room only, outdoor porch, etc.)

It would save me a lot of money if I just put in some Tandem Breakers.

breakerbox.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is your main breaker rating?

That panel looks pretty full. Do you have an amp meter you could check your typical draw on the panel to see how much available power you have or would be using during the winter. Just because you have space or one breaker is barely used does not mean you will have another 120 amps available.

May be a good investment to go buy a digital amp meter if you don't have onefor $50-$100 before you go any farther.

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The main breaker outside is 200amp.

I am not sure how many amps I use during the winter. During the summer I am sure I am using quite a few amps with 2 AC units running but or course these don't run during the winter.

I have been figuring out how many amps my entire display will take and it should not go over 100 amps and that is with everything on. Very rarely will my display be using a full 100 amps.

BTW one of those double breakers is to a 50amp 220v plug that goes to my garage that I never use.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have not seen one that cheap. May work just fine for what you need it for.

Harbor Freight sells one for about $50 and other name brands sell for $75-$100.

If you have a 200 amp service you may be fine, but I would check your overall load to be sure. I don't know if you have gas for heating, but the last thing you need is to tell your spouse that they can't dry clothes, have hot water, run a space heater, or cook dinnerfor all of December because the lights are on.

When you measure turn on anything that could be used or come on automatically atone time. Deep Freezers and Refrigerators come to mind. That should give you a prettygood estimate of what you have available. I am no electrical expert so others may have other suggestions that may be better. Just didn't want you installing the breakers and not knowing what you have.

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is there a way to figure out how many amps you are pulling at a given time by looking at the power meter? There must be a formula where you can count how many times the rotating disc spins in 1 min and figure out how many amps you are using (since we know that is is 240v at the meter).

Ok all your math wizards, how do you figure this out?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A 200 amp service gives you 400 amps at 120V ( You get 200 amps on each leg of the 220 service ).... Is your house all electric? Do you have high draw items like a hot tub, hot water heater(s), electric instant hot water, electric oven, electric driveway/sidewalkmelt, ..... Add up the major draws during the winter

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only big electric power draws I have during the winter is Oven, Microwave, Fridge, Washer/Dryer (stove is Gas power, gas water heaters, no hot tubs). Our electric Bill goes way down in the winter months and the Gas bill goes up.

I am guessing that I should also split up these new circuits so they are on each leg.

Thanks for the suggestions Dan. Yesterday I ordered 3 showtime 16 channel controllers and I am really excited for Christmas this year.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like you will have no issues.... You should split even across the two legs. If you go with the tandem breakers you will be pretty close to maxing out the box as far as space is concerned but you should be OK power wise.

BTW: What is that thing on the right side middle of your box? It looks like a 220v breaker with two tandem 120v breakers. If so I have never seen anything like that before (cool!)...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LightORama wrote:

A 200 amp service gives you 400 amps at 120V ( You get 200 amps on each leg of the 220 service ).... Is your house all electric? Do you have high draw items like a hot tub, hot water heater(s), electric instant hot water, electric oven, electric driveway/sidewalkmelt, ..... Add up the major draws during the winter

You know, wewant to get a hot tub down the road. Maybe I can use that to convince the wife we should get 400 instead of 200 when we eventually upgrade:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It sounds like you have enough capacity, but a full panel. You've already got a lot of tandems. Consider adding a 100amp subpanel with 100amp dual breaker. You could pull up to 200 amps at 120v and that would give you some expansion room for future uses. If not being used, use the space that your 50amp garage circuit is in. Just disconnect the wires and install new breaker.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know what his plans are or how many lights he has, but I installed 6 dedicated 20 amp breakers the other year for my lights. Last year I had 25,000 lights, and this year I'll have more. I believe the theoretical maximum would be 36,000 lights for 120 amps.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ben Jordan wrote:

Can I ask how many strings of lights you are running to need 6 dedicated 20 amp circuits?

A lot :)

I will not be pulling 20 amps from every circuit but want to do it correctly for future use.

I have 3 LOR boards and want to make sure that each side of the board has enough to pull 20 amps incase it needs to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

neworder wrote:

I have another question (I am full fo them today). I am going to need 6 dedicated 20 amp circuits. I thought instead of installing a sub panel I could replace 6 breakers with 20 amp tandem breakers and get the 6 circuits I need.

I want to make sure I am not breaking any codes and I am not sure what the codes are on Tadem Breakers (if you can have to many, etc.). Any disadvantages of running Tandem Breakers?

Below is a picture of my Main Panel right now. There are some single 20 amp breakers that get used very rarely (like powering a lamp in one room only, outdoor porch, etc.)

It would save me a lot of money if I just put in some Tandem Breakers.

I don't know from the point of view of codes but I think your only concern in using tandem breakers is that you don't overload the main breaker. One thing that I would do is piggyback another circuit onto the ones that only operate a lamp in a single room. If necessary you can just make sure that the lamp is off when the display is on. If you want to get really fancy you can swap out that breaker with a tandem, put the lamp circuit and a piggybacked circuit on one and a new circuit on the other. Another thing you can do is to use that circuit going to the garage. You could either pull the breaker (would disable the unused 220 in the garage obviously) and put in 2 tandems for 4 new circuits or you could set up a little subpanel in the garage that would plug into the 50 amp 220V outlet.

TED

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LightORama wrote:

BTW: What is that thing on the right side middle of your box? It looks like a 220v breaker with two tandem 120v breakers. If so I have never seen anything like that before (cool!)...

Say that is cool! Really cool! Looks like you have a double pole breaker (middle)and 2 single pole breakers all in 2 slots! I suppose that you could use the 2 outer ones as a double but it does not look like the levers are connected. Actually looking at the picture a little closer it looks like the middle2 are a 30 ampdouble polewhile the outer 2 are 20 amp singles! :shock: :shock: :shock:

TED

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is called a Quad in the trade. It can be obtained in many formats from 2 double pole to 4 singles.

One point no one mentioned here is you have to look at the panel layout. Some manufacturers have a mdified buss bar where twins(tandoms) can be added according to the UL listing. Others do not and the twin will slip in anywhere however routinely twins are placed in the bottom 5 spaces. You have a 30 circuit panel there. It may even be a 30/40 which means it can utilize 30 full size 1 inch breakers or up to 40 circuits utilizing tandems. Any more than that would need a sub-panel for a proper installation. You have to check out the panels specs.

What is the model number? It should be on the inside of thedoor. It looks like a Square D Homeline 30/40. If I am right the model number will be something like HOM3040L200**

Brian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

macrosill wrote:

That is called a Quad in the trade. It can be obtained in many formats from 2 double pole to 4 singles.

One point no one mentioned here is you have to look at the panel layout. Some manufacturers have a mdified buss bar where twins(tandoms) can be added according to the UL listing. Others do not and the twin will slip in anywhere however routinely twins are placed in the bottom 5 spaces. You have a 30 circuit panel there. It may even be a 30/40 which means it can utilize 30 full size 1 inch breakers or up to 40 circuits utilizing tandems. Any more than that would need a sub-panel for a proper installation. You have to check out the panels specs.

I didn't know that tandems will only fit on the bottom (or certain slots)in some panels. Since the bottom spaces have tandems and the"Quad" is higher up I would bet that tandems will fit anywhere on this panel. I have seen mention of the total number of circuits printed on the boxes that panels come in.

TED

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

we have a few tandem breakers we use but they are shared with the one for the a/c one for the computer which is only one outlet and one for the basement since we don't go down there that much, plus if we go in the basement we unplug that section of the the display while we go down there since i have an all static display. in fact the first picture on this page is a huge breaker box compared to mine we only have 20 slots and the main breaker is only 100 so i will have to upgrade soon or just get my mom to buy a newer house lol like that will happen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the replies everyone.

Macrosill - The model number is HOMC30UC

You were right about only certain spots allowing a tandem. I went and bought a few tandem circuits and I could not get them to fit. After pulling out one of the other tandem circuits I see that the plug is a little different and only the bottom 5 spots will allow a tandem breaker.

Looks like I am going to have to install a sub panel. I am thinking that I can remove the 220 50amp breaker (show near the top left) and then install a 100 amp breaker there that will then feed the subpanel using 4ga wire. This should give me 100amps at 240 or 200amps at 120.

Does this sound like the correct way to add the subpanel?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You don't necessarily need to pull the 50 amp breaker out. You could pull any others to give you the two spaces. Where would you install the sub panel? If it is next to this panel then look for breakers that may have long enough wire to run to the new panel. If you are going to remote mount the panel like in the garage then see if the 50 amp plug in the garage could be rerouted to the new panel.

Keep in mind that where ever you mount the subpanel you will then be running the power to 6 new outlets. Remote mounting the panel could save you money since the 12/2 romex is running about $90 for 250 ft. The 4 awg wire may be cheaper to run 100 ft to power the sub panel than it is to run (6) 100 ft runs of 12/2. Also if you are planning to pull near 20 amps on the outlets you should have them near the boards instead of on 100' extension cords.

Just a few things to keep in mind.

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks everybody for your help. I started installing the 100amp sub panel and things are going pretty good so far. It seems like my new panel did not come with grounding bars so had to stop working on it today and will pick some up tomorrow.

I had to move a 2x4 because the open space to the right was only 10 inches and I need 14 to install the panel.

I went ahead and bought one with a lot of spaces since I have an unfinished basement and this will allow be to expand. Here is a picture of my install so far. If you are wondering what those extra things are in the main panel, they are for X10. One of the devices is a repeater so X10 signals will go from Leg to Leg better and the other one is a X10 filter so no X10 signals go in or out of the house on the main power line.

breakerbox2.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Neworder,

I noticed a few things in your new install that will need correcting before you move on any further. The 4 conductors you have feeding the subpanel will need to be incased in conduit, either emt, pvc, rigid pipe or flexible conduit like greenfield or carlon. You can not have individual conductors. Since you bought the copper already I would get some greenfield, 1 1/4 inch should do. The neutral conductor will need to be marked at both ends with white tape. the ground conductor will need to be marked on both ends with green tape. The subpanel will need to have the neutral bar isolated from the grounds and the panel itself. The ground conductor will need to be connected to the ground bar you are awaiting and that bar will need to be bonded to the panel enclosure. The placement in the main panel of the 100 amp breaker does not matter except you should keep it out of the spaces that will accept tandem breakers. A 100 amp tandem would be super expensive, if even made.

Good Luck,

Brian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info macrosil.

I was not sure if you could have individual conductors or not. I bought it at Home Depot and they did not sell 2/4 (2awg - 4 Conductors) and they only thing they had was 2awg and it came in 3 Conductors but did not have an outer casing. The Neutral is marked though with a Yellow line on the cable.

I was not sure if I had to iput it in conduit it so I did buy some flexible conduit but did not use it. Sounds like I will go a head and use it if that is what code needs to be.

I will post another picture to make sure everything looks right.

Thanks for your help!

-Richard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...