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Adding a 2nd electrical box

I'm having a new over the range microwave installed and was told by the contractor that since the panel is out of circuits, a 2nd box must be added and will have about 5 more circuits. I'm fine with all that since I can clearly see that there are no more circuits in the panel, but when I asked if this needed to be inspected or if a permit was needed, the response I got was "no". Now before I get the answer of "depends on where you live", I'm wondering how difficult of a process this is and would the suggestion be that I have it inspected? It's being done by a licensed electrician, so I'm assuming he's right, but I just want to get some independent feedback.


Timothy Miller
Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

Howdy, Call the building department and ask the electrical inspector if an inspection is needed-( protect your self!)

Ok a sub panel is being recommended. What is the currant service limit? How old is the panel? Might also consider asking the inspector when adding additional circuits at what point do you have to bring up the houses entire service to meet currant code? Since your having work done in the kitchen are the power outlets all GFI protected? Do you have enough small appliance outlets? Might want to add more or upgrade more then just a sub panel.

Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

It's a 200Amp box, but there aren't as many circuits that you would expect. I recently purchased the house in February and had a home inspection done...nothing was noted as being an issue with the electrical so I'm really not too keen on re-doing everything.

A. Spruce
Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

I can't put my finger on it, but something just isn't right with this scenario.

1 - Most jurisdictions require permits whenever electrical, plumbing, or structural work is done. Basically, anything that is not "finish" work, such as paint or flooring requires a permit. The only way to know for certain is to ask the building department.
2 - Something isn't jiving with what you say needs to be done and what you say the electrician is telling you.I would highly recommend you consult with at least one if not several more electricians before continuing.

Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

Follow the answers above and get more bids.

I don't think that your building department will require you to upgrade your entire electrical system. But whatever you install now will have to meet the current code.

You must get your improvements inspected and signed off. It's not a big deal and if it's done right your inspector will sign off with a smile. This is a job for a lic. electrician.

Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

Yep -- I agree something smells fishy.

Having a sub-panel added will more than likely require a permit and inspection --- regardless if a licensed electrican or not is doing the work.

A simple phone call or visit to your local building department will definately answer that. If so, then don't use the above mentioned electrican --- find someone else.

Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

To replace or alter more than an outlet, switch, breaker, or fixture with another one that has the same rating almost always requires an inspection- and adding a sub-panel almost certainly does.

No licensed tradesperson is going to risk losing their license by not following proper and legal procedure if you can prove that they did indeed do the work. In this case the cost will be minimal and the protection worth that cost so do it right. If the tradesperson balks at doing this, run them off and get someone worth their salt- you'll sleep better afterward!


Re: Adding a 2nd electrical box

i agree 100% with comments above. however where i live, it is rural and we dont have to get inspections on hardly anything, i get them for new construction and service upgrades. basically whenever the power company is involved. now going to your panel. you may not need one depending on the panel you have. a lot are 40 circut/ 30 spaces. allowing you to use tandem breakers to clear up 10 spaces.

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