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    rfathers5's Avatar
    rfathers5 Posts: 3, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    Oct 28, 2006, 06:52 AM
    200 amp or 100 amp
    Which is better, a 100 amp circuit box or a 200 amp circuit box?
    andrewcocke's Avatar
    andrewcocke Posts: 439, Reputation: 22
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    #2

    Oct 28, 2006, 07:10 AM
    If at all possible, go with the most you can afford. 200 AMP seems pretty standard, and you shouldn't outgrow that.

    Remember, you don't have to use all 200 AMPs right away. When I first moved into my house, I had an old 40 year old oil furnace in the house that quit. When I replaced it with a 15KW electric resistance furnace, I was glad that who ever upgraded the box in this house before me decided to go with the 200 AMP. Saved me a lot of money, now I have enough power in my home to power the usual modern day conveninces should I ever want to install them, such as a central AC, heaters, christmas lights, and other gadgets.

    Everything in my house is electric, from the furnace, to the water heater, dryer, stove, range, EVERYTHING. And I never overload my system.

    200 is what I would choose given the choice.
    labman's Avatar
    labman Posts: 10,580, Reputation: 551
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    #3

    Oct 28, 2006, 07:43 AM
    If you are talking about an ordinary house, go with the 200 amp. For some other limited use, maybe a 100. Long time, likely electrical use will continue to climb. May come a time when gas, oil, and propane become too expensive, requiring more electrical use.
    andrewcocke's Avatar
    andrewcocke Posts: 439, Reputation: 22
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    #4

    Oct 28, 2006, 09:13 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by labman
    May come a time when gas, oil, and propane become too expensive, requiring more electrical use.
    We are there, with heating oil prices at $3.00 per gallon, and nat gas, propane isn't mch better. I did the math before I installed this furnace, and I get more BTU per dollar with electric believe it or not.

    However that is subject to change, Appalachain Power is raising rates as we speak. I guess no matter what you do, your screwed.
    labman's Avatar
    labman Posts: 10,580, Reputation: 551
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    #5

    Oct 28, 2006, 09:24 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by andrewcocke
    However that is subject to change, Appalachain Power is raising rates as we speak. I guess no matter what you do, your screwed.
    Actually gas and oil never went up like it was predicted, and is lower now than a year ago.

    And prudent people are caulking and insulating. When I resided my house 20 years ago, I put inch foam on bringing the side walls to R-19. I also meticously sealed all air leaks.
    andrewcocke's Avatar
    andrewcocke Posts: 439, Reputation: 22
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    #6

    Oct 28, 2006, 09:52 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by labman
    Actually gas and oil never went up like it was predicted, and is lower now than a year ago.

    And prudent people are caulking and insulating. When I resided my house 20 years ago, I put inch foam on bringing the side walls to R-19. I also meticously sealed all air leaks.
    I don't know, I saw the cost of self service kerosene at wilco the other day, it was right up there at $2.75 per gallon. Many oil stoves and some oil furnaces burn kerosene and not no 2 deisel in their furnaces.

    Dollar for dollar, heat in general is to darned expensive. Even burning wood is costly now, unless you live on 200 acres of wooded land.

    However, contrary to my official heating system, I still burn about $60 per month in kerosene in my portable heaters.

    "And prudent people are caulking and insulating."

    I heard that! Bring on the duct tape! Used a whole roll last week on my windows and doors. Sure looks a little tacky, but not near as tacky as a $300 heating bill!

    I guess I can't fuss about the light bill that much, in this area, I have been told that our region of the country has some of the cheapest electric around. After the increase we're paying about 7 cents per kiliwatt hour.
    tkrussell's Avatar
    tkrussell Posts: 9,651, Reputation: 724
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    #7

    Oct 28, 2006, 11:23 AM
    While I agree entirely with andrew and labman, just wanted to point out that the size of electric service is nothing to guess at.

    There are specific calculations that are needed to be done to size a service, based on the square footage of livable space in the home, the required circuits,the type and quantity of appliances, if heat is electric, and air conditioning.

    Only wanted to say that if your choice is larger than needed, then great, but if too small, and a 200 amp may not be large enough, then you may have more trouble to deal with.

    Thou I do not show how to do the calcs here, if you want to provide the details I can work up the size needed. Or you can find a copy of the code at a library and review the Examples. Don't bother looking for the actual code online, as it is extremely copyright protected.

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