ask the electrician
Electrician Training Electrical Certification wiring recessed light fixtures Electrical Wiring Electrical Troubleshooting and Electrical Repairs wire outdoor light fixture Home Electrical Wiring Diagrams
wiring home generator and transfer switch wiring a 220 volt range cord outlet Wiring for GFCI Outlets Wiring Outlets and a Switched Outlet Wiring and Installing Ceiling Fans and Remote Controls wire dimmer switch wiring diagrams for switches wiring a dryer cord and 220 outlet circuit breaker panel
Electrical Wire and Cable

» Helping You Wire It Right!
» Home » Electrical Wiring Projects

Wire Size for a Home Electrical Service Panel

How to Size Wire for an Electrical Service Panel: What kind of wires do I need to get power to my home?

Electrical Video #1

Electrical Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Helping You to Wire It Right!

See more Home Electrical Wiring Videos

Check out my YouTube Channel, and Subscribe!

See the Electrical Wiring Video #2 Below:

Wiring an Electric Service Panel
[ad#block] Electrical Question: What kind of wires do I need to get power to my home?

Project #1: Underground Electrical Service to a New Home

This Home Electrical Panel question came from: Bill, a Homeowner from Saratoga, California.

Project #2: Electrical Service to a Home

This electrical wiring question came from Madison, in Vidalia, Georgia.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring questions Bill and Vidalia.

How to Size Wire for an Electrical Service Panel

main electric panel

Application: Installing a Main Electrical Service Panel
Skill Level: Advanced – Best installed by a Certified Electrician or a Licensed Electrical Contractor.
Tools Required: Electricians pouch of hand tools and the various power tools necessary for the specific method of electrical service installation.
Estimated Time: Depends on the type of panel, the location, and available access to the project area.
Precaution: This is an extensive project. Working in an electric panel has possible electric arc flash hazards and should be performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor.
Notice: Installing an Electrical Service Panel should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.

Planning an Electric Service Panel for a Home

In the projects mentioned above there are factors that will determine the type and size of the electrical service to the home, first let’s start with the basics:

The Electrical Service

Terminology and Clarification

Overhead or Underground Service

Factors for Sizing the Electrical Service

Residential Electrical Load Calculator

  • Electrical Panel Circuit Load Calculator

    • The Electrical Load Calculator is a fully functional online and Interactive tool that will assist you with accurate panel load calculations.
    • The Residential Electrical Load Calculator is Pre-Loaded with electrical information for you to chose for typical electrical loads in the home.
    • General Electrical Load Requirements, Appliances and Motor Loads, Heating and Air Conditioning equipment.
    • Sizing Wire for a Panel: Voltage Drop Calculator

More about the Home Electrical Service Panel


The following may also be helpful for you:

Electrical Wiring Video #2

Home Electrical Wiring Videos about this Topic and More

Check out my YouTube Channel, and Subscribe!

Dave's Companion Guide to Home Electrical Wiring:

» You Can Avoid Costly Mistakes! «

Here's How to Do It:
Wire It Right with the help of my Illustrated Wiring Book

Great for any Home Wiring Project.
  electrical wiring  

Complete Guide to Home Electrical Wiring

Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handy Women, and Electricians
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
How to Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
....and much more.

Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.

More articles about Main Electrical Service Panel and Home Electrical Wiring:
« Previous Next »
How to Ground Electric Outlets Control Switch Wiring for a In-Line Exhaust Fan

FAQs Frequently Asked Questions and Comments

2 Responses to “Wire Size for a Home Electrical Service Panel”
  1. rich says:

    I recently had to go into my 200 amp service panel and noticed that water was coming in through the main service cable. I had that leak fixed, but I noticed that the ground bus and two breakers were corroded. I replaced the breakers. Must I also replace the ground bus? There were no service interruptions and all seems to be doing fine.

  2. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Rich,
    Water corrosion inside a panel can cause extensive damage to the electrical components, so it was good to have the leak repaired and the circuit breakers replaced.
    The ground system of the main service panel is extremely important and must not be compromised. Therefore, if the ground bus has been corroded then it should be cleaned and repaired, or replaced.
    VERY IMPORTANT: The ground system of a panel should never be serviced or disconnected while the main electric service power is on. All methods and components of the ground system must conform to applicable electrical codes and compatible with the electric service panel. This work is best performed by a qualified electrician or licensed electrical contractor.
    Be Safe,