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Electrical Contracting

I need to obtain quotes for some electrical work-new service line, possibly an upgrade to the break box itself. Can anyone give me some advice on what things I should look for, or be wary of, in listening to a potential contractor? Thank you!

Re: Electrical Contracting

Get at least 3 quotes, and ask for an itemized list of work to be performed and material. It is difficult to compare general quotes that just list overall cost.

Re: Electrical Contracting

When requesting quotes, try to be as specific as you can. When you ask vague requests, you'll get estimates all over the board, depending on how the contractor interprets your request.

Instead of saying "new service line", be specific about how and where you want it run: overhead, underground, by what route; will conduit run along the surface of the structure or will it be concealed; will the meter base be replaced, and how so; that sort of thing.

For the breaker panel, you can specify things like "room for X more circuits" and how you want the wires run. A standard residential panel is limited by code to 40 circuits; if you need more you have to go to multiple panels.

Keep in mind that if the panel is to be replaced, it cannot be placed in a closet, a bathroom, or within six feet of a water source (I think). It must be in a location with 3 feet of clear floor space in front of it -- it can't be above a counter, for example. The closer it is to the location of the original panel, the less expensive the job will be.

Re: Electrical Contracting

Thanks to both of you I'm getting great quotes-I really appreciate your help!

Re: Electrical Contracting

I put together a 13 page list of what you're asking on my website titled "What to do before you call an electrician".

If anyone would like to help me improve on it, I welcome any suggestions.

Good Luck from Columbiana, Alabama
Maurice Turgeon, thesemi-retiredelectrician.com

Re: Electrical Contracting

Mo, that is a wonderful page you have up. Very insightful.

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