What Size Wire Should I Use To Supply 200 Amps Of Power To My Pole Barn?
July 26, 2006
Q: What size wire and how many conductor do I use to run 200 amp from my meter socket to my 200 amp main breaker my pole barn ?
A: The first thing you need to do is determine if you can do this work. Installing your main power is one of the few electrical wiring projects that most areas do not allow homeowners to do. Please check with your local building codes department before beginning any work. If you are able to do this work, please pull a permit and get the work inspected after completion.
If your run is 100 feet or less you need to install 3/0 copper or 250 kCMil aluminum. If you also install phone, TV or gas to this building, you need to install 2 – hots, 1 – neutral and 1 – ground. In this instance, your ground wire needs to be a minimum #4 copper or #2 aluminum.
If your run is over 100 feet you need to plan for voltage drop and increase your wire by 1 size for each 100 feet over 100 feet. For example, if your run is 150 feet you need to install 4/0 copper or 300 kCMil aluminum. This will also increase your ground wire size to #2 copper or 1/0 aluminum.
If you don’t install any other utilities to your barn you may only run 2 – hots and 1 neutral. However, this will require you to install a ground at your panel in the barn. The best way to do this is to install 2 – 8′ x 5/8″ galvanized ground rods 6 feet apart. Then install a continuous #6 bare copper wire from your panel, to each ground rod and back to the panel. Do not cut this wire, make it one continuous loop from your panel through each ground rod and back to your panel.
Do you need assistance with your electrical wiring project? Please visit my DIY Electrical Wiring Help from a Master Electrician page. Where I provide electrical wiring tips, expert electrical advice, answers to your electrical questions and electrical consulting & design services over the phone, via instant messenger or via email.
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