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Can't decide 100 amp or 200

Discussion in 'Electronic Basics' started by Rick, Sep 2, 2003.

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  1. Rick

    Rick Guest

    I'm hoping you can help or suggest. I'm having a new house built and I
    can't decide how big the service should be 100 or 200 amp.
    I have
    Gas furnace
    Gas water heater
    Gas stove
    I have a small hobby woodworking shop with several small tools and an
    we have an electric clothing dryer and central air.
    Can I get away with a 100 amp service

    Thanks Guys for any suggestions
  2. How many of these things are you going to be running at one time? It
    wouldn't hurt to have a 200 amp if you want. it might cost more to install
    though. But probably a 100 is all you need unless your going to have
    everything running at once. If you want to get more precise just add up all
    the power used by each lightbulb, appliance, radio, TV , etc. take into
    account what will be running and when and estimate from there.

  3. Yep. Another thing to consider is to wire all the rooms with CAT 5 or CAT 6,
    cable, telephone, etc. Its far more expensive and painful to do it later.
  4. Jim Large

    Jim Large Guest

    Sounds good in theory, but then there's the
    electrical code to deal with. You can't get a
    100A panel with more than a certain number of
    breaker slots. If you want more than that
    many branch circuits, then you'll have to get
    a bigger (150A or 200A) panel. Doesn't matter
    if the only electrical appliance you ever plan
    to own is a 7 1/2 Watt night light.

    Oh, and of course, there's some maximum number
    of outlets per branch circuit (varies depending
    on what kind of room (kitchen, bedroom, bathroom)
    the circuit supplies; and there's a *MINIMUM*
    number of outlets per room. This also varies
    based on room type, but basically, there isn't
    supposed to be anyplace you could put a lamp or
    an appliance that's more than so-many feet from
    the nearest outlet (e.g., six feet along a
    bedroom wall, or two feet along a kitchen

    I'd bet that a lot of McMansions under
    construction today would be illegal with
    anything less than 200A service.

    -- Jim L.
  5. Bob Masta

    Bob Masta Guest

    Some future "needs" can be rather exorbitant power hogs, like
    an electric pottery kiln, for example. I'd go with 200.

    Bob Masta

    D A Q A R T A
    Data AcQuisition And Real-Time Analysis
    Shareware from Interstellar Research
  6. Wade Hassler

    Wade Hassler Guest

    The price difference is so small: get a 200A service.
    People are constantly deciding to increase their service size, never
    to decrease it.
    When I did this kind of work, it was necessary to give a plausible
    story to the utility (PG&E) about why you needed a bigger service and
    that story was usually " a heat pump to be installed later."
    Wade Hassler
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