Electrical panel question

ESP47

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If I do any modifications to the conduit length, then I'll have to talk to the county and PG&E about extending the feed length because there's no way it'll be long enough if I add a couple of 45s to the existing conduit. Even if I'm able to do that, if I run into any sort of snag along the way, it could lead to me not having power for an extended period of time. I just don't know how deep into customizing this I want to get because of that very reason.

I started thinking about seeing if I could buy a meter socket that connects directly to the existing conduit and then running a short piece of conduit above it that connects to a subpanel. I'm not even sure if anything like that exists, at least in a flush mount form. Definitely not finding anything on google so far.
 

jawbone

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On a underground service panel like this line side is on the bottom of the meter not on the top
Does your meter run backwards? Wish I could help but I'm out. You guys have ways of doing things and equipment I've never seen the likes. Guess only in California. Can you mount a regular meter can upside down? Hub would be in the center.
 

67Dart273

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Meters don't run backwards, as it's AC power. Not sure if you can mount them that way or not. Likely, "you could"
 

JDMopar

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@ESP47 You're going to have to get PG&E involved if you install any type of new meter base. The best thing to do would be to install it around the corner from the garage door and then let them run a new UG service to it. If you are installing a new 200-amp panel also, you could sub feed the old panel that is above your meter base from the new panel. The power company cannot run their service thru your breaker panel unless there is a raceway that is not accessible from the inside of the breaker box. If you install new stuff, you will only be without power for a few hours during the swap over, because the power company and your electrician will have to be there at the same time.
 

OneOfMany

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Meters don't run backwards, as it's AC power. Not sure if you can mount them that way or not. Likely, "you could"

When I replaced my mast during upgrade to 200amp service, I inadvertently reversed the two feed lines. When our hydro company came out to restore service, they pointed it out and told me my meter would run backwards. Since I needed to have the inspector come back, and it was too late in the day, they plugged my meter in upside down overnight, before returning in the morning to shut off the service, allowing me to make the change, have it reinspected, and power restored.
I told hydro, I wasn't concerned with the meter running backwards
 

ESP47

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@ESP47 You're going to have to get PG&E involved if you install any type of new meter base. The best thing to do would be to install it around the corner from the garage door and then let them run a new UG service to it. If you are installing a new 200-amp panel also, you could sub feed the old panel that is above your meter base from the new panel. The power company cannot run their service thru your breaker panel unless there is a raceway that is not accessible from the inside of the breaker box. If you install new stuff, you will only be without power for a few hours during the swap over, because the power company and your electrician will have to be there at the same time.

I'm not trying to do this project live or anything. I talked to PG&E and they said it would require trenching through my asphalt driveway to run 200 amp service so I'm basically stuck with what I've got at 125. Not a big deal. I planned on doing the work myself but this situation has me at a loss at the moment since it doesn't seem like anything really exists that will just go in place here. One of my neighbors knows an electrician down the street so I'm going to see if he can come by and just take a look at it and let me know what's possible.
 

JDMopar

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Did they mention anything about doing a bore under your driveway to prevent digging it up? It would cost a little extra to do that, but it would probably be cheaper than repairing or repaving the driveway. Could you post a pic with your back to your meter base, looking towards the pole or box on the ground your service from PG&E comes from? I work for a power company here in NC. I was a lineman for 28 years, and now I am an Inspector that looks after contractors that do directional boring and also bores done by what we call a bore hog. That is basically a big pointy pneumatic air hammer that beats a tunnel under the ground from point to point that you pull pipe back thru. Maybe if you can get another pic looking towards their facilities, I can give more constructive suggestions. Getting PG&E to co-operate may be another thing altogether!
 

6PakBee

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I think I'd put the new panel on the interior to the right of the old one. I'd get a new meter socket and a disconnect, all installed and wired to the new panel on the exterior of your home. When you were ready to cut it over, I'd shorten the feed conduit and install a junction box below the existing panel and stub conduit to the exterior and then to the new disconnect. Splice the main feed conductors in the junction box and run the new conductors to the new disconnect. Then start transferring the branch circuits from the old panel to the new panel.
 

EvaUnit

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Is there any news about your panels? I think we have the same models since I recognize what is in my house from the photo. Soon I will have to deal with all the wiring in my house, as my wife and I are doing repairs and want to install a newer wiring system. For me, the main thing is safety and protection from any possible situation where the wire fails and starts burning, and for my wife, the most important thing is practicality and energy savings. So I thought about installing panels from https://www.luminsmart.com/platfom/smart-electrical-panel since I heard that it is very convenient from the point of view of the economy. However, I will have to remove all the old wires, and I don't quite understand how I can do this.
 
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