Latest Discussions : Electrical & Lighting


05:43PM | 03/07/05
Member Since: 03/06/05
1 lifetime posts
Hi all!

I would like some advice on the best way to wire my basement. Here is my situation.

I have an unfinished basement. The rest of my home is pretty typical in the electrical configuration. I have a single breaker box (installed in 2003 -- home is 1.5 year old) that powers the whole house. It is a pretty large size breaker box but the house itself is also decent size and all the circuit breakers are used up. The breaker box currently has 3 circuit breakers dedicated to the basement.

The first breaker is a 15 amp breaker for all the lights inside lights (5 overhead lights one in each room), the outside light at the door, and a single GFCI outlet for the ENTIRE basement. I have additionally added 3 outlets on this circuit for the moment.

The second breaker is a 20 amp breaker labeled "spare" and is currently connected to nothing, just runs to a spare box in the cieling (this is goodness).

The 3rd breaker is a 15 amp breaker for the furnace. I do not want to use the furnace breaker for anything (this doesn't seem like a good idea). This leaves me with only 2 breakers for the basement. The basement has 5 rooms and is a little under 1000 sq. ft. This doesn't seem like enough breakers to me (if I just had

one more I think it would be ok!) So I'm wondering what the best thing to do here is.

1) Should I install a new breaker box and daisy chain it off the existing box via one of the existing 2 breakers? And if I do that, wouldn't I need to upgrade the breaker to a higher amperage breaker so my new breaker box wouldn't have a total capacity of only 15 amps? If I do that, would I not need to upgrade the wiring anyway off that circuit since currently it is only 14/2?

2) Should I install a new breaker box and have the electrical company run a new line and meter to it (I really want to avoid this if possible as I imagine its expensive to have them do this)?

3) Should I just deal with the existing 2 breakers and try to split them up accordingly (2 and 3 with the 20 amp running the 3 and 15 running the 2)?

Any other options??

Any suggestions are very much appreciated! Thanks in advance!



04:33PM | 03/09/05
Member Since: 12/30/02
46 lifetime posts
Hi dewitt,I just finished my basement and did all of the work myself except for the carpeting.

Here's what I did and would reccomend for you.I didn't have enough circuits left to do the basement.(My house is 3 years old and has a 200 amp service.)I purchased a 100 amp Homeline sub panel made by Square-D. It cost about 30 dollars. In your main panel you will need to make space for a 30 amp breaker that will require two spaces. You'll need to run #8awg wire from the main panel to the sub panel.You may want to get the 125 amp sevice in case you need more circuits in the future.

It's funny that I saw this today as I was at H.D. today looking at the 125 amp panel as I have out grown the 100 amp panel already.Poor planning on my part I guess.

Hope this helps.

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