Is clearance to an electrical panel required to the sides?


Did an inspection today. 600 Amps to this gigantic home.

Main panels did not meet the minimum clearances between.

One of the sub-panels had a 3-wire feed, with no metallic conduit between main and sub, and no 4th conductor. 120 and 240 volt circuits abound. Where's the ground. Neutral bar was isolated, BTW, so we've got THAT going for us

Inspection sticker proudly displayed.

What am I missing here?

Transformer on site. Water all around it. Conduit from transformer to inside of basement has water POURING from it, into 3'x3' distribution cabinet. BIG cables, and large metallic conductor bars. Meter is connected in parallel, and conduited outside.

Really dangerous situation with the water. Weep holes drilled in bottom of this cabinet for "drainage" Unfortunately, it drains directly onto two side-by-side disconnects to two more sub-panels elsewhere in the dwelling. Builder had electrical contractor try and fix problems. Dug trench at one...

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I have a condo in a large building with many identical units. Several times other owners have mentioned that the original layout of the utility room isn't up to code due to the proximity of the water heater to the electrical panel--it comes up during sales inspections and some owners have spent quite a lot of money to relocate the panel.

In my research I haven't been able to find any such code; the nearest I can find is 110.26(A)(2) which dictates the free space around the panel.

NEC 110.26(A)(2) Width of Working Space.

The width of the working space in front of the electric equipment shall be the width of the equipment or 750 mm (30 in.), whichever is greater. In all cases, the work space shall permit at least a 90 degree opening of equipment doors or hinged panels.

By that standard the design is up to code, the water heater is just far enough to the side to provide the needed working space.

Is there another code that is specific to the...

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The National Electric Code requires min. 3'0" there are several rules defined in section 110.26 of the NEC; for 600 volts or less it is:

left to right the minimum clearance is 30" or the width of the equipment, whichever is larger in height, there should be 6' 6'' minimum height to stand in front of the equipment (exception for dwelling units for panels 200 amps or less) the depth in front of the equipment varies depending on the voltage and surfaces of the opposite wall behind you: if the voltage is 150 volts to ground or less the depth of clearance is 30": as stated above; if the voltage is higher it depends of whether the opposite wall is insulated or not: if insulated the depth is 3' 6", if not insulated (such as cement block) the depth is 48"

I refer to these rules as the "refrigerator rule": the clearance in front of the equipment in question requires a dedicated clear space roughly the size of a large refrigerator

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Electrical panels not only have to meet the explicit measurement standards of OSHA and NFPA, they must also be reasonably considered "readily accessible." In a 2005 letter to the Marshall Space Flight Center, OSHA Director Richard Fairfax further clarified the term. If someone must use portable ladders, stools or chairs to reach the electrical equipment, it is not considered readily accessible. Climbing over or moving furniture and other impediments to reach the equipment also constitutes a violation of the "readily accessible" standard. If electrical panels are locked, they are still considered readily accessible, as long as qualified persons can quickly access the...

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Are you protecting yourself from electric shock and burns? You're not if you fail to comply with the following three clearance requirements in Sec. 110-26 of the National Electrical Code (NEC): 1) at least a 3-ft clearance in front of all electrical equipment; 2) a 30 in.-wide working space in front of equipment operating at 600V or less; and 3) minimum headroom clearance of 6 ft or the height of the equipment, whichever is greater. Let's look at these three clearances in detail.

Depth of working space Sec. 110.26(a)(1)

The depth of the working space in front of exposed live parts must be at least as great as the distances outlined in Table 110-26(a). You must measure distances from live parts or from the front of the enclosure or opening in which the live parts are enclosed. The working clearance in front of the equipment on which you're working is also dependent on the composition of the facing wall and whether it houses live electrical parts. As...

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It depends what class the room is for one. Minimum of 1 meter around all sides of the panel is rule 2-308:

Working Space around electrical equipment:

(1.) A minimum working space of 1 m with secure footing shall be provided and maintained about electrical equipment such as switchboards, control panels, ans motor control centres that are enclosed in metal, except that working space is not required behind such equipment where there are no renewable parts such as fuses or switches on the back and where all connections are accessible from locations other than the back.

(2.)The space referred in Subrule (1) shall be in addition to the space required for the operation of draw-out-type equipment in either connected, test, or fully disconnected position and shall be sufficient for the opening of enclosure doors and hinged panels to at least 90 degrees.

(3.) Working space with secure footing not less than specified in table 56 shall be provided and maintained...

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Alternating Current (AC)

The flow of electricity that constantly changes direction between positive and negative sides. Almost all power produced by electric utilities in the United States (and used by homes and business) is AC current that shifts direction at a rate of 60 times per second.

Ampere (Amp)

The unit of measure that indicates how much electricity flows through a conductor. It is like using cubic feet per second to measure the flow of water.

Amp-Hour Meter

This meter measures the cumulative energy going into or out of a system’s batteries, in order to provide an estimate of the state-of-charge.

Battery Box

A battery box may be a safety requirement for wet cell batteries and functions to contain hydrogen gas which is then vented to the outdoors. A battery box also protects the battery from the environment in outdoor remote or industrial applications.

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