I have the following breaker box. GE Powermark Gold TLM1212RCU.

GE Powermark Gold TLM1212RCU

I need a 50 amp double pole breaker for a SPD Type 2 Surge Protector (EATON CHSPT2ULTRA). It says it needs to be mounted at the topmost where the feed lines enter.

What type of breaker should I look for?

  • Have you tried searching the internet? A simple DuckDuckGo search for "GE Powermark Gold 50 amp breaker" listed several items that state they're compatible with the GE Powermark Gold line of boxes.
    – FreeMan
    Jun 22 '20 at 17:28
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    That's called a "Twin" breaker, and it does NOT provide you with a 240V connection because it only attaches to ONE bus bar. It is for squeezing two separate 120V circuits onto one space, not the same thing. You need a THQL250. And by the way, you will need to connect that with #6 wires. That's probably a serious overkill of an SPD for such a small panels and in a residential service by the way.
    – JRaef
    Jun 22 '20 at 18:36
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    Panels are often made to be "CTL" (Circuit Total Limitation) to prevent people from plugging in too many breaker poles and overloading the bus. So yes, those poles at the top are the only place those twins can be plugged in. But you can also plug in regular breakers to those slots too. It's just that if later you WANT to use twins, you would have to move them out.
    – JRaef
    Jun 22 '20 at 19:25
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    What JRaef said is incorrect. GE panels are weird. Jun 22 '20 at 19:34

I installed this same surge protector in my 50-year-old GE panel with a 50 A double pole compact breaker (1 inch wide).*

Note that this must be installed astride two slots to get both legs. The breaker and the panel together have a mechanical incompatibility preventing it from snapping into a single slot.

This means the compact two pole breaker cannot be installed at the very top, but must be shifted 1/2 slot (1/2 inch) down. I don't think this reduces performance since this device is in parallel with all the other breakers in the panel. You can put in a 1/2 inch breaker in the half slot above and that circuit would still be protected.

If you would install a full size 2 inch wide 2 pole breaker I think it could be installed at the top, but then it would occupy twice as much space in the panel.

You do not need heavy wires to connect this surge protector, just use the leads that are attached to the case of the surge protector.

*I think I used a GE THQP250.

EDIT My experience is limited to my very old panel. Pay attention to the statements of others about where the 2-pole 50 A breaker will fit. If there is resistance, stop and try another pair of slots. I do not think the breaker for the surge protector needs to be at the top.

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    THQP250 is indeed the part number you're after; however, it won't work in the top slots in the OP's panel (note the lack of a cruciform base on the bus stabs there) Jun 22 '20 at 23:59

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