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The cupboard room is not next to an external wall, about 5 metres into the house. The power to the house comes in through a conduit, quite large, more like a drainpipe, about 5 inches in diameter. There is also an OpenReach cable here. The conduit looks like it will be about 12 to 16 inches deep where the mains enters the house. I would like to bring the solar inverter cable into the cupboard room through this conduit.

  • Is this OK to do?
  • How difficult might it be and what problems are likely? there is a right angle bend where the conduit comes back up into the cupboard room.
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    This is what country? The UK or somewhere that uses similar terminology...Will depend on local rules. Please edit to provide that [general, not your address] information. Assuming Openreach is some type of communications/LV cable the authorities may feel the power line is adequately self-insulated to share space with some other things - whether they feel that your solar feed is also adequately insulated for that, or what rules it falls under, will depend on the local rules.
    – Ecnerwal
    Nov 9, 2021 at 0:45
  • Some photos would help. The large conduit entering the house, where is the other end and how is it configured? Where is the meter or demarcation point between your wires and the utility's?
    – jay613
    Nov 9, 2021 at 12:36
  • If the data cable is in the electrical service entry conduit, perhaps the utility that owns both grants itself an exception to separation if the data cable is fiber and is metal-free.
    – jay613
    Nov 9, 2021 at 12:38
  • Sorry, this is in the UK. Openreach is a telephone/fibre company. Their cable is already in the conduit with the power cable. I am proposing to bring the solar AC cable through the same conduit into the meter cupboard. The conduit runs for about 5 metres under the house and turns upwards into the cupboard. The power goes to the main house fuse and the phone cable to a socket that connects with phone and the router. I will add a photo.
    – Tomny
    Nov 9, 2021 at 13:23
  • Where does the conduit go at the other end? Into the ground? Into a service pit? Up to the roof where the cables enter from a pole?
    – jay613
    Nov 9, 2021 at 19:13

1 Answer 1

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No, you cannot do this:

  1. The power to the house is coming from the electric utility. It's owned by them until the meter box. You are not allowed to modify their installation in any way.

  2. The OpenReach service is also owned by them and is not for power but fiber service. You cannot mix power and other services in the same conduit.

What you want to do is install a new conduit from your solar inverter to the outside of the cupboard room for your new solar installation. There are several ways to do this, open dig the trench by hand or with a powered trencher. Or you could get a local company that does underground directional drilling to install a conduit with minimal digging on your property.

In either case, however, you're going to want to understand the local building requirements for such an installation and do it properly and with any needed permits.

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  • The power to the house is owned by the electric utility. Openreach is owned by a separate telephone company. Both cables are already in the same conduit. I am talking of adding a third, the solar AC cable from the inverter. The cupboard is within the house, 5 metres from an outside wall. The intention is to bring the solar cable in a shallow trench to then enter the conduit where the power comes into the house, and, pull it through the 5 metres into the cupboard.
    – Tomny
    Nov 9, 2021 at 13:13

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