I am replacing a tiny 6 circuit subpabel in my detached garage with a larger panel and have been trying to find some info on this but haven't been able to locate anything in NEC or other threads. My plan is to add some thick furring strips (2x4 on edge) or scab some 2x8s to the current 2x4 framing, mount the panel "flush" and then drywall around the new 2x8 "pop out" for the box, kind of getting the best of flush and surface mount.

Is this code compliant?

This would solve a few issues for me:

  • the weird 12" stud spacing there so most modern panels don't fit,
  • provide around 7" of "stud" to give more room to run the feeders, which were brought in via a 2" pvc pipe by the original installer/electrician since I am having trouble finding anything to reduce that down to a managable size within a 2x4 wall
  • allow me to keep several existing NM circuits that are behind the drywall andrun those through the top of the box behind the drywall *Finally, I could use EMT straight out the side of the box for new outlets ran with THHN.

Any references to NEC you guys know of that allow/prohibit anything about this or something obvious I am overlooking with this idea? I am good on the building code and framing part, just can't find anything in NEC to make me think it's either permitted or allowed.

  • I've edited your post to make it a little more readable, but I'm not entirely sure what that last bullet point was supposed to mean. Please edit to make that more clear, and to clean up anything I may have done to detract from your original intent.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Apr 14, 2021 at 11:01
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    Don’t run the pipe behind the panel connect it at the top or bottom. Running conduit behind then in the top creates an impossible 180 degree pull. What wire type are you using to need a 2” conduit? If using nmb ditch the conduit. If conduit is required go to thhn. As far as holes you have the top and bottom of the panel to use also, if you are getting a full sized panel you could put a dozen circuits in the top and bottom quite easily.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Apr 14, 2021 at 13:41
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    This is really a framing question that falls outside the scope of the electrical code. Commented Apr 14, 2021 at 15:08
  • 4
    @NoSparksPlease Does that make it a frame challenge? Commented Apr 14, 2021 at 15:30
  • @ed beal, I really don't need 2" conduit but that it what is buried, then goes vertical at the exterior, and enters through a 2" pvc conduit body. The previous box had a handmade cutout that was so big I had to pull the breakers out to remove the locknut!
    – Padraic
    Commented Apr 15, 2021 at 0:08

1 Answer 1


This is fine as long as you maintain clearspace

There is nothing wrong with framing a non-structural "bump out" to house a flushmount panel as long as you don't introduce foreign (i.e. non-electrical, such as HVAC or plumbing) systems directly above the panel or create a situation that violates the 30" by 36" (fridge sized) clearspace that needs to be present in front of the panel so that it can be serviced.

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