We have a recent second floor & garage addition, and the main panel was moved to the garage from its old location.

Due to COVID and our general contractor's procrastination (we have since fired him), we can't expect garage doors installed until at least January, but we would like to have our electrical inspected before the permit expires in a few months.

As it's a garage, I think it would generally be considered an indoor location, but without doors, I'm not so sure. So far, the only relevant portion of the 2017 NEC (what the WA L&I office currently uses for inspection) I can find is Section 110.26(E)(2)(a)(2):

a. Installation Requirements. Outdoor electrical equipment shall be the following:

  1. Protected from accidental contact by unauthorized personnel or by vehicular traffic

Does "unauthorized personnel" mean we need a lock on the panel? Are there any other considerations that we need in order to pass inspection where the panel is located in a garage with no doors?

  • 1
    If it was my garage, I'd throw up a simple frame and plywood to enclose it until I had real doors. Commented Nov 30, 2020 at 18:42

1 Answer 1


It is a indoor location, the finish work is not required to be complete to get your final. If the panel is a 3R type it could even be outside (the only difference is the cover and how it sheds rain) but as long as the panel is not getting rained on or if you have Sheetrock walls around the panel it will normally pass even without doors.

If the inspector has questions answer them. As long as the wiring is covered and the area is not subject to rain, I would be asking for a final on the electrical because that’s when I get paid.

Note all the live connections are in boxes the panel covers are on this is what the second part is discussing no lock needed as I said it could be outside (not locked) and be ok.

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