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Question DetailsAsked on 3/8/2014

Cost to upgrade 60 amp panel with 200 amp panel in michigan, old 60s house with old wire do ineed to replace by cod

old 60s house with screw in fuses want to upgrade to 200 amp, can i use old wire for now on a budget or do i have to replace per code, i live in mi. if not how much to just upgrade for now having a elctriction do it.

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2 Answers


Each locality has it's own requirements , although ALL go by the same revised National Electrical code( NEC ), and the code leaves enforcement of the code to each locality. Some Localities ulitise the revised code the year after it is published , some wait for a few years to utilise the new code , so it is best to check with your locale code enforcement officials as to which code they are enforcing !

The new code , typically reguires a service change or update of the Service to comply with the revised code, which means , if the old wiring is not up to code requirements ,you have the choice to pull in NEW wire's or supplemental wiring to comply . This means if the old wiring does NOT have a ground wire you can either introduce a new ground wire into the system or pull new wires with a ground into the system. Either way , you tear up a lot of

wall surface that requires repair or you utilise a lot of conduit or wire mold .YOU decide which method you want to use.

Updating the existing bathroom , laundry rooms, kitchens, garages ,exterior receptacles, pools etc. and wet locations, require a Grounding system connected to a ground fault system , which protects the user's from electrical shock .

New construction requires the use of ARC Fault Breakers in bedroom locations , and this requirement is sometimes required on Service Updates , again , check with your local Code officials.

Changing from a 60A to 200A will reguire a NEW Service Entrance cable , 4/0 wire , introduction of a revised exterior ground system w/ 2 ground rods spaced 6 foot apart and an unbroken ground wire system .

Seems simple enough , don't it , ehh ?

Well it is NOT simple ,and certainly not a job for an inexperienced homeowner , as many electricains run into daunting circumstances which cause them to scratch their heads.

Typical costs can range from $ 4.00 to $ 10.00 per amp and up.

My advice to you , forget about trying to do it yourself !

Hire a competent ELECTRICIAN , let him solve the myriad of problems and difficulties .

Answered 6 years ago by BentheBuilder


As Ben said, some areas require new wiring coming into a replacement panel, some do not. Some jurisdictions also look at the $ amount of the job as a percentage of a total rewire job or of the house value and if you are exceeding 25% or 50% of the total rewire cost or of the building's value, then require you upgrade the entire system.

Generally, even if allowed to keep the current house circuit wiring, you cannot install a new panel on 2 wire wiring, and you have to meet current code on what you DO replace - so for instance you cannot just upgrade the service wiring from the meter - you have to meet code on required shutoff boxes or master breakers and AFCI/GFCI protection and grounding and such, as he indicated.

You can get some cost ideas from responses to prior questions about rewiring and breaker box upgrading in the Home > Electrical link right under your question. As Ben said, you are likely to have to replace your main feed from the meter and your master breaker also, and possibly the line feed from the power company transformer to your meter and likely the meter also, though some power companies will do the drop and meter upgrade cheaply or free if you are going to be upgrading to pull more power.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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