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CarolynandBob

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Had a shop built on my property. Could not put it closer to the house. Shop will be used for wood working and storage of boat and tractor in the winter.

Question is where should I pull power from?

From the house? House has 200 amp. I am sure we use way less than 100 amps at any given time. New house with all led. A/c is the biggest user. Gas stove, electric dryer and the other normal appliances. Would put 100 amp sub panel in shop.

House is 1000 ft from the shop. Would be somewhat easy to trench to the shop. Can someone calc, the voltage drop? I am guessing 3/0 wire. My internet search showed a 12 volt drop.

Pros of running from house are mainly cost. 1)Cheaper to pay an electrician to make the connections and inspect to make sure it is to code. 2) When we leave in the winter we won't have a min charge to pay electric co. 3) I can cover the trench as I go. This will helps with all the rain in the spring and accessing the property. Cons. 1) Limited to the 100 amp if I want to expand in the future or add welders etc.. 2) Voltage drop.

From the road.

Closest electric from the power pole is 1300 ft. Would have to trench is down the side of the road, (already have approval of county road supervisor). Electric co would want to run high voltage 240 that far. They charge $3.75 ft, 2 $500 junction boxes, 1-$750 transformer plus about another 1K in addition fees etc... Then I have to trench 1300ft, 4ft deep, keep trench open until they inspect. (this makes it difficult to leave our property), Once they inspect, then we cover 2ft and lay high voltage tape in the trench and then have them inspect again to make sure the tape is in there. I have to pour pad concrete for the transformer. They provide meter and panel. My cost would be about 10K all in.

Pros. 1) 200 amp service and I haven't asked but probably 3 phase if I want it. 2) Never worry about future power needs. Cons, 1) Cost 2) Min. charge when gone for the winter, Can't turn off power as I want cameras to stay on. 3) Lose use of driveway during construction.

What say the experts?
 

Carlson-jet

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If 480v 3 Phase is available, it would cost you less in the long run to hit the Shop and run it back to the house via a transformer. JMO.
Otherwise dig a trench and run it your self.
 

Sleek-Jet

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Put a sub panel off the meter, run a 100 amp service out to the shop.

Pull in 4/0, 2/0 URd triplex from the sub panel to the breaker panel in the garage.

The only thing you might have to do is have a 400 amp meter installed at the house.
 

Carlson-jet

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Put a sub panel off the meter, run a 100 amp service out to the shop.

Pull in 4/0, 2/0 URd triplex from the sub panel to the breaker panel in the garage.

The only thing you might have to do is have a 400 amp meter installed at the house.
At that point new service will have to be run to handle the 400 amps. Why not just see what's available?

480/3 is way cheaper than 220 any day.
 

Sleek-Jet

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If 480v 3 Phase is available, it would cost you less in the long run to hit the Shop and run it back to the house via a transformer. JMO.
Otherwise dig a trench and run it your self.
If the transformer is UG you end up with 120/208 service. Isn't a big deal these days but some older appliances can't run 208. And you'll have to change the meter base on the house to accept a network single phase meter.

If it is OH they can wire in a 120/240 bank.
 

Sleek-Jet

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At that point new service will have to be run to handle the 400 amps. Why not just see what's available?

480/3 is way cheaper than 220 any day.
I'm betting not. Most specs these days cover both 200 and 400 amp single phase services.

On the utility side we call it a 320 amp service, but the narrow backs all call it 400 amp service.

A true 400 amp service would require way different metering and service entrances.
 
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CarolynandBob

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Put a sub panel off the meter, run a 100 amp service out to the shop.

Pull in 4/0, 2/0 URd triplex from the sub panel to the breaker panel in the garage.

The only thing you might have to do is have a 400 amp meter installed at the house.
Ok thank you. Couple of questions.
1) Where would I put the sub-panel with the 4/0? If at the shop then ok. If it isn't at the shop you are saying I can run the 2/0 urd triplex the 1000 ft?

2) Why would I need 400 amp?

On a separate note. How deep should I trench it on my property? Is the 4ft standard or mainly for high voltage?
 

Sleek-Jet

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It's all in the same bundle, the 4/0 is for the 240 volt lines, the 2/0 is for the neutral.

The URD triplex can be direct buried, so just open up a trench, roll in the wire and backfill if you want.

Depending on the load at the house you might need a higher amperage meter, but that would be something you and your electrician can figure out.

I don't do a good job explaining this stuff.. LOL.. tahoma or rrr are better teachers.
 

CarolynandBob

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It's all in the same bundle, the 4/0 is for the 240 volt lines, the 2/0 is for the neutral.

The URD triplex can be direct buried, so just open up a trench, roll in the wire and backfill if you want.

Depending on the load at the house you might need a higher amperage meter, but that would be something you and your electrician can figure out.

I don't do a good job explaining this stuff.. LOL.. tahoma or rrr are better teachers.
Thank you .
 

Taboma

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Thank you .
First off, as you can now see, great information being offered and a multitude of opinions because there's so many variables.

It all begins with --- what do you really need now and possibly in the future, be realistic, there's potentially a few $$$ involved here.

First off, you need to do some realistic load calcs. As an example, the 12 volt drop you mentioned using 3/0 (Copper of Alum ?) isn't acceptable.
Depending on your needs, will most loads be 240V or 120V ? If just wood working and no AC, used as a garage and storage, most loads will be 120V.
Factor in possible future needs. I mean realistically, your actual load could be 25 amps, or it could be 70 amps --- big difference in cost.

Now, here's what I would do, even with my experience in the field, because I'm not from Tenn.
You got a good idea what it would cost for a separate shop meter from the utility company.
Your driveway could be easily plated for continued use, or most utilities will work with you allowing partial backfill as long as they can see the rest of the trench.

After writing down my actual and anticipated needs, I'd call a couple of local contractors, they will have better local knowledge of what's allowed --- such as URD (Direct burial underground cable) --- by the way, the 4/0 - 2/0 means the phase conductors will be 4/0 aluminum and the neutral 2/0. Honestly, in my profession, because it's mostly large commercial / industrial, URD wasn't something we did.
I'd advise you to run 350MCM copper in PVC and the wire would only cost you maybe $ 18K :eek: 😂

You'll learn a lot getting a few contractor estimates, but those will only be as good as the usage information you can provide them up front (Loads).
Then, you can do some viable cost comparisons, and if you like, we can return to this subject and give more valid opinions ---- and debate mundane points infinitum.

That's my $ .02 for a Saturday morning. 😁
 

jet496

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Had a shop built on my property. Could not put it closer to the house. Shop will be used for wood working and storage of boat and tractor in the winter.

Question is where should I pull power from?

From the house? House has 200 amp. I am sure we use way less than 100 amps at any given time. New house with all led. A/c is the biggest user. Gas stove, electric dryer and the other normal appliances. Would put 100 amp sub panel in shop.

House is 1000 ft from the shop. Would be somewhat easy to trench to the shop. Can someone calc, the voltage drop? I am guessing 3/0 wire. My internet search showed a 12 volt drop.

Pros of running from house are mainly cost. 1)Cheaper to pay an electrician to make the connections and inspect to make sure it is to code. 2) When we leave in the winter we won't have a min charge to pay electric co. 3) I can cover the trench as I go. This will helps with all the rain in the spring and accessing the property. Cons. 1) Limited to the 100 amp if I want to expand in the future or add welders etc.. 2) Voltage drop.

From the road.

Closest electric from the power pole is 1300 ft. Would have to trench is down the side of the road, (already have approval of county road supervisor). Electric co would want to run high voltage 240 that far. They charge $3.75 ft, 2 $500 junction boxes, 1-$750 transformer plus about another 1K in addition fees etc... Then I have to trench 1300ft, 4ft deep, keep trench open until they inspect. (this makes it difficult to leave our property), Once they inspect, then we cover 2ft and lay high voltage tape in the trench and then have them inspect again to make sure the tape is in there. I have to pour pad concrete for the transformer. They provide meter and panel. My cost would be about 10K all in.

Pros. 1) 200 amp service and I haven't asked but probably 3 phase if I want it. 2) Never worry about future power needs. Cons, 1) Cost 2) Min. charge when gone for the winter, Can't turn off power as I want cameras to stay on. 3) Lose use of driveway during construction.

What say the experts?
There shouldn't be any voltage drop as long as the wires are sized properly.
 

hallett21

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Only thing I’ll add is my math says you’ll need 4/0 - 350 size wire if you plan on using the full potential of the sub panel.

But as @Taboma said above you may only need 25amps

Also you if you go the direct burial route I would run a 2” and maybe a 1” PVC conduit with it.

1000ft is a lot to dig up again if plans change down the road. And PVC is pretty cheap.


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Joe mama

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Unless this some big wood shop operation I can’t imagine one guy using the full potential of that sub panel, unless he’s an octopus. If using the 350’s -4/0’s you will have to transition to smaller wire to land on that 100A sub Breaker.
 

Taboma

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Unless this some big wood shop operation I can’t imagine one guy using the full potential of that sub panel, unless he’s an octopus. If using the 350’s -4/0’s you will have to transition to smaller wire to land on that 100A sub Breaker.
Terminal plug.jpg
 

Taboma

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Only thing I’ll add is my math says you’ll need 4/0 - 350 size wire if you plan on using the full potential of the sub panel.

But as @Taboma said above you may only need 25amps

Also you if you go the direct burial route I would run a 2” and maybe a 1” PVC conduit with it.

1000ft is a lot to dig up again if plans change down the road. And PVC is pretty cheap.


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Future conduits spare conduits ----- of course, great suggestion !!
I'm a firm believer in spare future conduits, as such, when I wired my house I kinda went nuts with spares to pretty much every-fucking-where. :oops: 😂
Holy Mommy of God --- I had some time recently due to being COVID bound, so really started cleaning up and making my as-built electricals pretty. You know, deciphering all those red squiggles I made 10 years ago and updating my E-sheets so any new owners or my surviving kin might have a clue.
My wife keeps asking me why I'm sitting here giggling ---- I tell her, " It's the spares conduits, spare stubs, spare comm conduits, conduits into the yard, conduits into the grove, it's like I was obsessed with Spares, WTF was I thinking ? " So far, 10 years later, I've never used one, but damnit, they're there. 😂

With a spare to that shop, Bob could run his cameras from the house, if the meter fee is too much, assuming they'll let you do that and assuming the re-connect fee isn't to much --- I'd feed the cameras from the house anyway. So two spares, one power and one comm.
 

Taboma

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Those are nice if you have the room. Now bending those 350’s in a residential service with those reducers on will be fun to watch. Lol

I agree with you 1000%, you see I don't think residential, but you're right, when I made up my main, which only contains 240V loads to 3-subpanels, ACs, solar, and electric cooking appliances, I was cussing up a storm and leaking red stuff everywhere. :mad::mad:

Please disregard that suggestion, I'm high on caffeine. :oops:
 

hallett21

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Future conduits spare conduits ----- of course, great suggestion !!
I'm a firm believer in spare future conduits, as such, when I wired my house I kinda went nuts with spares to pretty much every-fucking-where. :oops: 😂
Holy Mommy of God --- I had some time recently due to being COVID bound, so really started cleaning up and making my as-built electricals pretty. You know, deciphering all those red squiggles I made 10 years ago and updating my E-sheets so any new owners or my surviving kin might have a clue.
My wife keeps asking me why I'm sitting here giggling ---- I tell her, " It's the spares conduits, spare stubs, spare comm conduits, conduits into the yard, conduits into the grove, it's like I was obsessed with Spares, WTF was I thinking ? " So far, 10 years later, I've never used one, but damnit, they're there. 😂

With a spare to that shop, Bob could run his cameras from the house, if the meter fee is too much, assuming they'll let you do that and assuming the re-connect fee isn't to much --- I'd feed the cameras from the house anyway. So two spares, one power and one comm.
It’s a sickness. This is for the ADU conversion we’re doing this fall. You know just Incase lol.
8FF7D88A-2731-4ED2-9187-AE7F7C5FEC7B.jpeg
 

Taboma

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It’s a sickness. This is for the ADU conversion we’re doing this fall. You know just Incase lol. View attachment 911297

I've got enough future Cat 6 Ethernet cables strung around this house to run a server farm --- WIFI ? Whatta mean you don't need all my cables 🤔 Hell, I've got an 1 1/2" UG comm conduit to my fucking avocado grove --- WHY ???? Future Cell Tower ??
 

mjc

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How about 400 amp at shop with the house a sub off of that panel? This is what i did in havasu added new panel to garage and wired house off of the 200a breaker in 400a panel.
 

Joe mama

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How about 400 amp at shop with the house a sub off of that panel? This is what i did in havasu added new panel to garage and wired house off of the 200a breaker in 400a panel.
I’m guessing that would be more money!!!!
 

wishiknew

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I agree with the 350's if the run is 1000 feet also in ca you cant usually get 3 phase power to a residental area
 

2FORCEFULL

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How about 400 amp at shop with the house a sub off of that panel? This is what i did in havasu added new panel to garage and wired house off of the 200a breaker in 400a panel.
same thing I did at the cowboy house dropped 400 amp an the garage and made the house a 200 amp sub...
 

CarolynandBob

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First off, as you can now see, great information being offered and a multitude of opinions because there's so many variables.

It all begins with --- what do you really need now and possibly in the future, be realistic, there's potentially a few $$$ involved here.

First off, you need to do some realistic load calcs. As an example, the 12 volt drop you mentioned using 3/0 (Copper of Alum ?) isn't acceptable.
Depending on your needs, will most loads be 240V or 120V ? If just wood working and no AC, used as a garage and storage, most loads will be 120V.
Factor in possible future needs. I mean realistically, your actual load could be 25 amps, or it could be 70 amps --- big difference in cost.

Now, here's what I would do, even with my experience in the field, because I'm not from Tenn.
You got a good idea what it would cost for a separate shop meter from the utility company.
Your driveway could be easily plated for continued use, or most utilities will work with you allowing partial backfill as long as they can see the rest of the trench.

After writing down my actual and anticipated needs, I'd call a couple of local contractors, they will have better local knowledge of what's allowed --- such as URD (Direct burial underground cable) --- by the way, the 4/0 - 2/0 means the phase conductors will be 4/0 aluminum and the neutral 2/0. Honestly, in my profession, because it's mostly large commercial / industrial, URD wasn't something we did.
I'd advise you to run 350MCM copper in PVC and the wire would only cost you maybe $ 18K :eek: 😂

You'll learn a lot getting a few contractor estimates, but those will only be as good as the usage information you can provide them up front (Loads).
Then, you can do some viable cost comparisons, and if you like, we can return to this subject and give more valid opinions ---- and debate mundane points infinitum.

That's my $ .02 for a Saturday morning. 😁
Thanks for all the reply's

As far as load, I do not think I will need 100 amps. Right now I am running a 5500 watt generator when needed. I have already wired the shop outlets and lights. I have the generator plugged into the 100 amp panel. I just turn the breakers on that I need. I would like to get a couple of mini splits as it gets pretty hot here. I was going to go with the 120v mini splits, but may change that to the 240 if it makes more sense to run that to the shop. With that being said I had figured 50 amps for a/c and 20 amps for any saw that I am using. That leaves me 30 amps for anything in the future. Was thinking about putting a 50 amp RV plug, so when friends with rv's visit they can plug in. When friends visit I am pretty sure I won't be using the shop.

Now I would love to get estimates and talk to an electrician, but I can't even get one to come out. They are all booked. Especially, when I am not even going to do this until next spring/ summer, which I haven't told the few I contacted. Plus I do not want to push them to come out when I know I don't need them yet. That is the main reason I asked the questions here. When I read the direct bury I told myself I would be running conduit. Too cheap not to. I was figuring 1-1/2 - 2 inch. With 4/0 I may need to go bigger than that. Figure the electrician can tell me. My main point to these questions were to help me decide if I should run it from the house or pay the money for new service. I am fine paying for the new service, but my polish jew ass doesn't like to waste money. I want to make sure the new service is the "better" way to go. If it isn't "better" then I don't want to pay it. Again thank you for all the reply's.
 

Taboma

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Thanks for all the reply's

As far as load, I do not think I will need 100 amps. Right now I am running a 5500 watt generator when needed. I have already wired the shop outlets and lights. I have the generator plugged into the 100 amp panel. I just turn the breakers on that I need. I would like to get a couple of mini splits as it gets pretty hot here. I was going to go with the 120v mini splits, but may change that to the 240 if it makes more sense to run that to the shop. With that being said I had figured 50 amps for a/c and 20 amps for any saw that I am using. That leaves me 30 amps for anything in the future. Was thinking about putting a 50 amp RV plug, so when friends with rv's visit they can plug in. When friends visit I am pretty sure I won't be using the shop.

Now I would love to get estimates and talk to an electrician, but I can't even get one to come out. They are all booked. Especially, when I am not even going to do this until next spring/ summer, which I haven't told the few I contacted. Plus I do not want to push them to come out when I know I don't need them yet. That is the main reason I asked the questions here. When I read the direct bury I told myself I would be running conduit. Too cheap not to. I was figuring 1-1/2 - 2 inch. With 4/0 I may need to go bigger than that. Figure the electrician can tell me. My main point to these questions were to help me decide if I should run it from the house or pay the money for new service. I am fine paying for the new service, but my polish jew ass doesn't like to waste money. I want to make sure the new service is the "better" way to go. If it isn't "better" then I don't want to pay it. Again thank you for all the reply's.
This is why I was encouraging you to perform and actual rough load calc, because often you find you don't need nearly as much as you think based off counting breaker rating amps. There's numerous online charts and calculators for doing this, with various appliance or common loads you can select. These are common on generator websites for calculating gen loads. Then you look at just how many of these devices will be operating at any given time --- some might be more continuous, others, like shop equipment might be used one at a time. Then you look at how many of those loads are 240V (Yes, of course you want 120 / 240 ( 2 hots & 1 neutral (I'm not a fan of downsizing the neutral)+ ground) and how many are 120V. If you factor the voltage drop using 120V, then you're covered on the 240 V loads.

The cost of this project is going to vary wildly based on what you need and might want to have available for the future. Permitting is also a factor and local codes if that's the case.
Personally, I don't like direct burial cable, I consider it's only "Pro" it's cheaper cost and decreased labor.
I'd use PVC, at least 2 1/2" - 3" for that length and plan on at least 2 UG pull boxes ( Pull through them, not splice) and hopefully it's a pretty straight shot. If you use 4/0 aluminum you're good for a continuous 25 amps load on 120V @ 3% and change VD, so you could push that some for intermittent loads and be fine. I'm not a fan of aluminum in general, but a $ 1 a foot for 3,000' is certainly more wallet friendly than $ 3 a foot ( Very rough pricing, no idea in your area). You'll also want a proportionately sized ground wire ( 4th wire) due to the distance & a ground rod at the shop in addition. As mentioned, I'd run of couple of 1" spares while I had a trench open (One for comm, maybe one for who-da-fock-knows) --- do you need water too ?

The importance of realistic load calcs are easily seen when you compare the costs of 25 amps @ 120 vs 50 amps for an acceptable voltage drop ( 3% range), with a cushion to 5%) with this distance factored in. Costs jump a bunch when you use 50 amps as your load, a whole bunch.

I suppose cost wise, I don't see a huge difference between new meter vs fed from house, unless you're thinking like some RDPers and are imagining bigger is always better and start thinking about lathes, mills, big welders and 5 tons of cooling --- OR new meter and now feeding your house off that garage meter --- now we're talking really big bucks, because the load calcs increase and conductor size will increase dramatically.

So if it were me, I'd trench from the house to the shop and use at a minimum 4/0 aluminum (approx 25 amps @ 120 ) or possibly 350 MCM Aluminum ( 40 amps), in the 3% VD range, which is conservative, either could be pushed when necessary. I'd probably run 3" PVC as well.

This info should allow you to spend some time perusing the internet for some more local pricing and factor some approximate dollar figures to compare against the 2nd meter approach price. Other associated costs, such as trenching, backfill, actual wiring, will depend on your skill level and involvement.
Wire pulling beer party anybody 😁

Can you go cheaper ?--- yes, direct burial. Can you get carried away and spend $ 20K, yup, that too --- I'm only offering my conservative input, which you might want to take with a grain of salt, since after almost a life long year career in this business, I've been retired for the past 10 --- and more importantly, unlike the big boys here on RDP, I only have a 200 amp main and even with a relatively large all electric home, I doubt I use 30% of that capacity even on a really HOT day, but I'm not running any large shop equipment.

Does this answer your question and hopefully help ?
 

lbhsbz

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Figure out what you really need. Unless you have a bunch of CNC machines, You won’t be running more than one thing at a time.

I fed a sub to my garage off of a 60A breaker at the main...run a 5HP 80gallon compressor, a couple 200A class welders, lathe, mill, grinders, plasma cutter, table saw, planer, and whatever else I needed. All my LED lighting in a 600sq/ft shop only consumes about 10 amps...if that. I never needed more power in the 10 years I was there.
 

buck35

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Am I the only one thinking 1000 feet from the house? Holy crap ,that's a ways away! When I was electrifing my shop the local utility wanted 15,000 to put in a pass thru transformer to another within 150 feet of my panel. That was if I dug the trench and put in the 3 inch conduit. Total distance was about 250 feet.
 

buck35

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BTW , I ran a 50 amp sub off the house instead . I think it was a tad over a hundred feet ,and have had zero issues,even with a 5000 watt heater for wintertime to keep it above freezing.
 

CarolynandBob

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This is why I was encouraging you to perform and actual rough load calc, because often you find you don't need nearly as much as you think based off counting breaker rating amps. There's numerous online charts and calculators for doing this, with various appliance or common loads you can select. These are common on generator websites for calculating gen loads. Then you look at just how many of these devices will be operating at any given time --- some might be more continuous, others, like shop equipment might be used one at a time. Then you look at how many of those loads are 240V (Yes, of course you want 120 / 240 ( 2 hots & 1 neutral (I'm not a fan of downsizing the neutral)+ ground) and how many are 120V. If you factor the voltage drop using 120V, then you're covered on the 240 V loads.

The cost of this project is going to vary wildly based on what you need and might want to have available for the future. Permitting is also a factor and local codes if that's the case.
Personally, I don't like direct burial cable, I consider it's only "Pro" it's cheaper cost and decreased labor.
I'd use PVC, at least 2 1/2" - 3" for that length and plan on at least 2 UG pull boxes ( Pull through them, not splice) and hopefully it's a pretty straight shot. If you use 4/0 aluminum you're good for a continuous 25 amps load on 120V @ 3% and change VD, so you could push that some for intermittent loads and be fine. I'm not a fan of aluminum in general, but a $ 1 a foot for 3,000' is certainly more wallet friendly than $ 3 a foot ( Very rough pricing, no idea in your area). You'll also want a proportionately sized ground wire ( 4th wire) due to the distance & a ground rod at the shop in addition. As mentioned, I'd run of couple of 1" spares while I had a trench open (One for comm, maybe one for who-da-fock-knows) --- do you need water too ?

The importance of realistic load calcs are easily seen when you compare the costs of 25 amps @ 120 vs 50 amps for an acceptable voltage drop ( 3% range), with a cushion to 5%) with this distance factored in. Costs jump a bunch when you use 50 amps as your load, a whole bunch.

I suppose cost wise, I don't see a huge difference between new meter vs fed from house, unless you're thinking like some RDPers and are imagining bigger is always better and start thinking about lathes, mills, big welders and 5 tons of cooling --- OR new meter and now feeding your house off that garage meter --- now we're talking really big bucks, because the load calcs increase and conductor size will increase dramatically.

So if it were me, I'd trench from the house to the shop and use at a minimum 4/0 aluminum (approx 25 amps @ 120 ) or possibly 350 MCM Aluminum ( 40 amps), in the 3% VD range, which is conservative, either could be pushed when necessary. I'd probably run 3" PVC as well.

This info should allow you to spend some time perusing the internet for some more local pricing and factor some approximate dollar figures to compare against the 2nd meter approach price. Other associated costs, such as trenching, backfill, actual wiring, will depend on your skill level and involvement.
Wire pulling beer party anybody 😁

Can you go cheaper ?--- yes, direct burial. Can you get carried away and spend $ 20K, yup, that too --- I'm only offering my conservative input, which you might want to take with a grain of salt, since after almost a life long year career in this business, I've been retired for the past 10 --- and more importantly, unlike the big boys here on RDP, I only have a 200 amp main and even with a relatively large all electric home, I doubt I use 30% of that capacity even on a really HOT day, but I'm not running any large shop equipment.

Does this answer your question and hopefully help ?
Thank you . That is what I needed know and thank you to the others. The info has been very helpful.
 

CarolynandBob

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Am I the only one thinking 1000 feet from the house? Holy crap ,that's a ways away! When I was electrifing my shop the local utility wanted 15,000 to put in a pass thru transformer to another within 150 feet of my panel. That was if I dug the trench and put in the 3 inch conduit. Total distance was about 250 feet.
Yes it is a ways. Our property is 8 acres. There are other places I could have put the shop, but the amount of earth work would have been huge. The golf cart makes the trip easy.
 

CarolynandBob

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This is why I was encouraging you to perform and actual rough load calc, because often you find you don't need nearly as much as you think based off counting breaker rating amps. There's numerous online charts and calculators for doing this, with various appliance or common loads you can select. These are common on generator websites for calculating gen loads. Then you look at just how many of these devices will be operating at any given time --- some might be more continuous, others, like shop equipment might be used one at a time. Then you look at how many of those loads are 240V (Yes, of course you want 120 / 240 ( 2 hots & 1 neutral (I'm not a fan of downsizing the neutral)+ ground) and how many are 120V. If you factor the voltage drop using 120V, then you're covered on the 240 V loads.

The cost of this project is going to vary wildly based on what you need and might want to have available for the future. Permitting is also a factor and local codes if that's the case.
Personally, I don't like direct burial cable, I consider it's only "Pro" it's cheaper cost and decreased labor.
I'd use PVC, at least 2 1/2" - 3" for that length and plan on at least 2 UG pull boxes ( Pull through them, not splice) and hopefully it's a pretty straight shot. If you use 4/0 aluminum you're good for a continuous 25 amps load on 120V @ 3% and change VD, so you could push that some for intermittent loads and be fine. I'm not a fan of aluminum in general, but a $ 1 a foot for 3,000' is certainly more wallet friendly than $ 3 a foot ( Very rough pricing, no idea in your area). You'll also want a proportionately sized ground wire ( 4th wire) due to the distance & a ground rod at the shop in addition. As mentioned, I'd run of couple of 1" spares while I had a trench open (One for comm, maybe one for who-da-fock-knows) --- do you need water too ?

The importance of realistic load calcs are easily seen when you compare the costs of 25 amps @ 120 vs 50 amps for an acceptable voltage drop ( 3% range), with a cushion to 5%) with this distance factored in. Costs jump a bunch when you use 50 amps as your load, a whole bunch.

I suppose cost wise, I don't see a huge difference between new meter vs fed from house, unless you're thinking like some RDPers and are imagining bigger is always better and start thinking about lathes, mills, big welders and 5 tons of cooling --- OR new meter and now feeding your house off that garage meter --- now we're talking really big bucks, because the load calcs increase and conductor size will increase dramatically.

So if it were me, I'd trench from the house to the shop and use at a minimum 4/0 aluminum (approx 25 amps @ 120 ) or possibly 350 MCM Aluminum ( 40 amps), in the 3% VD range, which is conservative, either could be pushed when necessary. I'd probably run 3" PVC as well.

This info should allow you to spend some time perusing the internet for some more local pricing and factor some approximate dollar figures to compare against the 2nd meter approach price. Other associated costs, such as trenching, backfill, actual wiring, will depend on your skill level and involvement.
Wire pulling beer party anybody 😁

Can you go cheaper ?--- yes, direct burial. Can you get carried away and spend $ 20K, yup, that too --- I'm only offering my conservative input, which you might want to take with a grain of salt, since after almost a life long year career in this business, I've been retired for the past 10 --- and more importantly, unlike the big boys here on RDP, I only have a 200 amp main and even with a relatively large all electric home, I doubt I use 30% of that capacity even on a really HOT day, but I'm not running any large shop equipment.

Does this answer your question and hopefully help ?
As I get closer to doing this project and with the increase in building material. Running a new service from the electric company, the cost went up a ton, so I will be running from my house.

I started another thread about coax and the questions I have, but this question is directly related to this.

What is the difference in 350 MCM Aluminum and 4/0, 2/0 URd triplex ? Planning on putting a panel on the outside of the shop and then feed the current 100 amp panel from that.
 

Taboma

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As I get closer to doing this project and with the increase in building material. Running a new service from the electric company, the cost went up a ton, so I will be running from my house.

I started another thread about coax and the questions I have, but this question is directly related to this.

What is the difference in 350 MCM Aluminum and 4/0, 2/0 URd triplex ? Planning on putting a panel on the outside of the shop and then feed the current 100 amp panel from that.
I read the new thread, started to write some comments and decided that participating in the RDP forums has become more aggravating than rewarding.
Far to many members don't want to exchange ideas, they simply want to bully their views, intimidate and argue, I don't find that fun or entertaining.
As such I think I'm going to start limiting my participation, because I'm tired of arguing and some of the attitudes of certain members concern me.

I do however have a great deal of respect for you, so here goes.

With that off my chest, I do realize with the distances you're faced with, there's a lot of $$$$ involved no matter how you do it.

I don't like direct buried electrical or communication, I wouldn't have it myself under any circumstances. When I ran power from my house out to my grove for both my large shed and 50A RV outlet, I ran two 1 1/2" conduits, one for power, one for Low Voltage.

To answer your question, although I'm not exactly sure what you want to know by asking it --- The simple answer is size, 350MCM being larger and capable of carrying more current with less voltage drop.
BUT, what I think you're asking is, the difference between a conductor you install in conduit and one rated for direct burial.
If that's the question, then both size ( Ampacity) AND more importantly the insulation and jacket type, and in the case of URD Triplex, you've got two hots and a neutral insulated from each other and contained in a single extremely tough outer jacket. Like romex with a tougher hide.

Have you calculated your load, I mean actual realistic, real life load ?

If you try to get 90 amps on 230V, it's going to get damned right expensive, I mean like parallel 250 - 300 MCM aluminum expensive.

@ 40 amps it appears like it's more single 250 MCM @ 4% voltage drop. If your actual realistic load is less, then 4/0 AL would probably work.
Given that, if it were me, I'd run a 2" PVC sch 40 for power, an 1 1/4" for comms, and maybe another 1 1/4" spare, but not sure why you'd need the spare.
I'd put at least two sets ( HV and LV) of pullboxes, you don't need to splice in them both, you can pull through the 4/0 in one of them. Limit the bends and make direction changes with large sweeping radius if possible. When you pull the wires, use cable lube, lots of it.

I'd try to keep a 1' separation between the water ( On top) and power and keep the LV near the top (Opposite side of trench than water) and away from the power as much as possible in one single 36" deep trench.
Depending on your soil type, and if it's not rocky, I'd be more concerned about shading the water than 2" sch 40 PVC, unless you're going to compact it with a hoe-ram.

There's my $ .02 on an early Wed morning. If I didn't address your question, I'll try again --- have a good one Bob.
 

McKay

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Lots of good advise. I am with the other's. Would not do direct bury URD if you intend to stay for any amount of time. Its not if it's when it will be an issue.
 

McKay

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Also been in this line of work for 24 years. Don't think I have ever seen PVC more expensive and Copper is getting really close to the 2011 high's.
 

CarolynandBob

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Update. Good News. Decided to just run it from the electric co and get 200 amp service. I also got a neighbor that will allow me to trench through a part of her property. Now I have to trench 590ft. Plus 100 ft from transformer to shop .
IMG_0843.jpg
t


3" local is 5.10 ft.

Checked out lowes. In Jackson TN it was $5.20, however if you buy more than 10 you get 15% off. That plus my 10% veteran discount got it down to about $4.20 ft.

With that savings and the lady letting me trench, makes this project much more affordable.
 

Baja 252

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You probably thought of this, but what happens if neighbor sells his house and new neighbor has issues with your electric on his property? I'd get an easement or what ever you need to make it legal and permanent.
 

LuauLounge

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Does the electric company provide the conductors and labor to the meter?
 

Waterjunky

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You probably thought of this, but what happens if neighbor sells his house and new neighbor has issues with your electric on his property? I'd get an easement or what ever you need to make it legal and permanent.
Yes, get it in writing..........
 

CarolynandBob

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Does the electric company provide the conductors and labor to the meter?
Yes I have to trench 4ft. Lay the 3" pipe with 90 deg. metal sweeps. Run the rope through the pipe. Fill it 2 feet and put down the high voltage tape and then cover.

Electric co provides the rope, voltage tape and everything else needed. Which I pay for in fees.

Last year I had the electric co come out and talk about it. That guys wasn't very helpful and seamed like he didn't really want to do it. That is one reason I wanted to run it from my house. I couldn't remember his name, but when I called this year they sent a different guy out. I asked him about the last guy as I didn't really want to explain it all again. He said the guy left. He said he was from a bigger city and didn't want to do things the rural way. LOL not sure if he was fired or just left.

Anyway this guys gets out his pad of paper and writes down everything I want. He says let's walk it and figure out the best way. He pulls up some map on his phone and says there is a pole over there. Couldn't see it from my place or from the road and never knew it was there. He said get an easement and you are good. I said I wonder how Hard that is going to be. He said you would be surprised how nice and easy people can be out here.

Went online and got the lady's name. Wife did some investigating work and got a phone number. We did go to the house but no one ever there. I call the lady and she is very nice. Spends winters south but will be back at the end of May. She said sure I can run it. Send her the paperwork and she will sign. Still waiting for that to come back, but just mailed it Monday.

I asked the Electric co guy about the application and fees. Online is says to pay them up front. He said don't worry about that. Just trench and I will get you the rope and tape. When we go to pull the line go in and pay the fees. Then I asked about the trench inspections as we have to go through my drive way and want to still be able to get in and out. He said call him when it is ready and he will come out. If he can't get there within 30 min he will have me take a pic, send to him and the cover it up.

Such a relief as I have been mind fucking this thing for almost a year. Just having a different guy willing to get it done made all the difference. Was looking at about 16K plus to get this done and now I am probably going to get it done for about 10K.
 

rrrr

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Such a relief as I have been mind fucking this thing for almost a year. Just having a different guy willing to get it done made all the difference. Was looking at about 16K plus to get this done and now I am probably going to get it done for about 10K.
It's sad our world has degenerated to the point where what once was common is now exceedingly rare.

When I was a kid, we lived in a house on property my grandparents purchased in 1952. It was on the SE side of Albuquerque, near the Wyoming Blvd entrance to Kirtland AFB and Sandia Base, the Army's nuclear device laboratories.

My siblings and I walked about a quarter mile to the school bus stop on Central Ave, which was also Route 66. The school was on the other side of Central. There was a drive in movie next to the bus stop. The owners built another new drive in next to it in 1962, and it cut off our access to the bus stop.

My grandmother knew the owners, and she contacted them about the bus stop issue. They agreed to put a gate in the fence surrounding the drive in so we could walk through the property to the bus stop. They also told her we could use the gate to enter after nightfall, spread a blanket, and watch the movies.

The world ran at a slower and kinder pace back then, just a few months before November 22, 1963.
 
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