I had a sub panel installed recently. The plan was that i will be installing my own breakers. The sub is running off of the main about 25 feet away in my garage. I understand that the ground and neutral cannot run on the same bars so why did they install it this way? Below is the pic of the sub panel! Can i just remove the bonding screw and attach the ground to a separate bus? Im getting mixed answers from people. enter image description here

  • 3
    Electrician screwed up. You can see the ground bar screws, they are directly in the photo. Also the N-G bond (green screw) will need to go. To be charitable maybe the person's last 10 panels were small GEs which have a rightside, insulated ground bar. Jan 28, 2021 at 2:35
  • It looks like at least one of the mounting screws is missing too. Between red and neutral. Not a huge deal, but I hate when people only put half the screws into anything.
    – J...
    Jan 28, 2021 at 13:22
  • I'm tagging @Harper-ReinstateMonica on this because he has already commented, and I know he knows the answer. Don't all subpanels require a local shutoff? This can be, and often is, a main breaker on the subpanel. Maybe I'm wrong...I needed one for mine (maybe a local thing).
    – tnknepp
    Jan 28, 2021 at 13:47
  • I believe in this case the fact that it's (as I read the question) in the same building means the shutoff at the supply end covers that. If it was a different building, yes, needed.
    – Ecnerwal
    Jan 28, 2021 at 13:56
  • @tnknepp Yup, only ones in outbuildings, as ecnerwal says... Jan 28, 2021 at 19:38

2 Answers 2


I'd be seriously tempted to email that picture to the licensing board...

I assume from your question that this was installed, incorrectly, by licensed electricians.

Buy a ground bar to fit your panel, note the pre-threaded holes in the back of the panel for the ground bar, move the ground wire to it, and remove the bonding screw. Or call up your "licensed electricians" and have them come correct their error without charging you extra, because it was a blatant error.

You will need a torque screwdriver (or low-value inch-pound torque wrench) for the connections to the ground bar, and your breakers, and perhaps you need to check the torque on the screws installed by your "licensed electricians" as well.

  • 2
    The correct grounding bar is an Eaton GBKP10 or GBKP14, by the way Jan 28, 2021 at 3:36
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    I think option #2 should be #1 - call the electricians back and make them fix it. To be honest, I'd consider reversing any payment I'd made and using the money to hire an actually licenced inspector to check all of their work. If they made such a basic error inside the panel you cannot trust anything else they've done. Presumably OP hired someone because they didn't want the responsibility of making sure that the work was done safely and correctly. It seems absurd to pay someone for that peace of mind only to be left with mystery meat at the end anyway.
    – J...
    Jan 28, 2021 at 13:40

Yeah, this was wrong

What the installers did here was a pretty blatant violation of the NEC 250.142(B) requirement that the grounded conductor not be used as a grounding means downstream of the service entrance, and doesn't fall under any of the exceptions that section provides. So, I'd make them fix it, as it shouldn't take them long to pick up the correct ground bar for your panel, whack it in there, move the green wire over to it, and remove the green grounding screw.

If you can't get them to come out there again, you'll need an Eaton GBKP14P, which you should be able to order in thru your local Lowes, or simply order online for that matter. Once you have that, the process is the same; just remember to keep the feeder breaker off until the work's done, though!

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