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    any electricians around?

    looking to upgrade my panel from a 100amp service, and checked out the wire to see what I could get away with. turns out the cable says:

    KAISER KATHENE (UL) SPEC 400 AWG AL 500 VOLTS TYPE XHHW

    so, a little googlefu returned that this may be 400kcmil wiring, which is rated up to.... 280amps?! that can't be right? did I miss something here?

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    I can’t imagine that you have 400 kcmil wire connected to a 100 amp service....the lugs typically aren’t rated for that large of wire. I picture would really help a lot.
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    Wire Size Calculator

    There are a number of wire size calculator’s on google. It depends on the length of the run, how much voltage drop you can live with and if you are going to use copper or aluminum. Good luck. If you are gong to be welding off that feed I would go at least a size heavier in wire just because it helps keep the lights from dimming. If it is a long buried run I would double it. I should say I did double it. My shed has a 100amp service but I sized the wires for 200 just because I don’t want to do that again.
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    you know what, after moving all the wires out of the way to get a good shot of the wire... a very faint "2" that was half rubbed off became visible next to the AWG. 😭 this project just got more expensive.. and I may have to repaint and re-drywall....

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    You sure it's not 4/0 AL printed on the feed wire? A 200 AMP service uses 2/0 Copper, or 4/0 Aluminum(Aluminum Clad).

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by Herminator View Post
    Wire Size Calculator

    There are a number of wire size calculator’s on google. It depends on the length of the run, how much voltage drop you can live with and if you are going to use copper or aluminum. Good luck. If you are gong to be welding off that feed I would go at least a size heavier in wire just because it helps keep the lights from dimming. If it is a long buried run I would double it. I should say I did double it. My shed has a 100amp service but I sized the wires for 200 just because I don’t want to do that again.
    no tools on this drop, it's just a small cabin in the woods. the real upgrade is so that I can run a 24kw on demand water heater. the panel is located about 6 cable feet from the meter on the outside of the house, but it's tucked into a wall I just closed up about a year ago, getting this place habitable again

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    Quote Originally Posted by lewisc1985 View Post
    you know what, after moving all the wires out of the way to get a good shot of the wire... a very faint "2" that was half rubbed off became visible next to the AWG. 😭 this project just got more expensive.. and I may have to repaint and re-drywall....
    That size sounds better. Typically when I do a service change out the existing wires wouldn’t be long enough in the first place if they were the correct size. How long of wire run and type of service are you talking about? You would need to change the meter socket etc and bring the grounding and other parts of the system up to code in most cases too. Basically what I am getting at here is unless it is an unusually long run the wire cost isn’t that much different but each job is different.
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    Quote Originally Posted by danselec07 View Post
    That size sounds better. Typically when I do a service change out the existing wires wouldn’t be long enough in the first place if they were the correct size. How long of wire run and type of service are you talking about? You would need to change the meter socket etc and bring the grounding and other parts of the system up to code in most cases too. Basically what I am getting at here is unless it is an unusually long run the wire cost isn’t that much different but each job is different.
    the run is seriously only about 6 feet from the meter to the panel. i'll probably go to 200amp service, just to futureproof a bit, but honestly, I was just hoping I could've popped a 150a breaker into the panel if the wire was that over sized... lazy lazy! haha

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    Quote Originally Posted by lewisc1985 View Post
    the run is seriously only about 6 feet from the meter to the panel. i'll probably go to 200amp service, just to futureproof a bit, but honestly, I was just hoping I could've popped a 150a breaker into the panel if the wire was that over sized... lazy lazy! haha
    It is never a good idea to take shortcuts on an electrical panel. I have seen to many shortcuts taken over the years, that have cost current owners lots of money & risked the lives of lots of people.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lewisc1985 View Post
    the run is seriously only about 6 feet from the meter to the panel. i'll probably go to 200amp service, just to futureproof a bit, but honestly, I was just hoping I could've popped a 150a breaker into the panel if the wire was that over sized... lazy lazy! haha
    How far is the transformer from the service panel and what size wire did the power company use. It may have to be upsized also!
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