I purchased a two family home and the electric was turned off by POCO. The current panels that were in the basement were rusted out old Eaton panels so they needed changing.

I went to Home Depot to find there were no 100amp main breaker Panels in stock and most the shelves were empty and there were no disconnects either. There’s been a panel shortage I guess. Anyways, I purchased a Homeline 6 main lug load center with 6 circuit slots. I will not have any circuits going to the basement, rather this will be just a feed to my sub panels in each apartment. I installed them, set up the proper grounding and etc and then threw in 100amp breakers in each one to feed the sub panel. So two load centers in the basement, each feeding a individual sub panel.

My question is, is this legal since there is no main disconnect to de-energize the actual bus bars or since there is less that 6 disconnects it would be acceptable? This would be in NYS. I know each municipality is different.

Thank you in advance!

  • Who's your power company, and I take it that the existing setup has one meter for the whole building, right? (a "master meter" IOW) Jan 16, 2022 at 20:55
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    National Grid. There are two electrical meters, one for each unit.
    – Al K
    Jan 16, 2022 at 20:58
  • If each panel has its own meter, how can you connect a single panel in between? You would end up with both meters feeding one (not allowed, and very dangerous) with usage split in an unknown way, or with one meter feeding both panels (not fair to one, great deal for the other). I think we're missing something here. Jan 16, 2022 at 21:16
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    There are two meters and two electric panels. Service drop is 200 amp that breaks down to the meters. Then each meter has its own SEU going down from each meters to its own panel. So to clarify, there are two meters and two panels, one for each apartment. As far as swapping out the breakers from 200amp to 100amp, they don’t carry many 100amp breakers in store if any. If it wasn’t in a rush to get power on I would have ordered it or went to a supply house. Now I’m stuck with if this is allowed, otherwise it will be pulling the meters and replacing or adding a disconnect.
    – Al K
    Jan 16, 2022 at 21:44
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    In this day and age, the impulse to "just get everything at Home Depot" doesn't work anymore. Aside from Lowes and Menards, try: a) local family-owned lumberyards, b) hardware stores such as family owned ACE affiliates, and c) proper electrical supply houses (which keep banker's hours since 99% of their business is to the trade, so open at 7 AM). And let your fingers do the walking - call them on the phone; Web searches are useless for finding electrical equipment since there's no margin in it. Jan 16, 2022 at 22:08

1 Answer 1


That sounds fine.

If you were going to buy a proper disconnect switch, most likely you would end up with a "disconnect enclosure" which is actually a 2-space service panel with a 100A breaker in it.

So you got a 6-space panel instead. No big deal; we like it when people get bigger panels than are required.

Note that if you "back-feed" the 100A breaker, it must have a tie-down kit so it cannot unclip and then you have power on the loose breaker clips. This is where you feed the utility into the sides of the 100A breaker, and then send the "main lugs" onward to the subpanel.

I mention back feeding because an advantage to a 6-space panel (over a 2-space) is the possibility of using certain generator interlocks. For instance the CHML and QO2DTI interlocks work great in their appropriate 6-space panels. I don't know off the top of my head if there's an equivalent for HOM; it's Square D's "cheapie line" and their support for it is "hit and miss".

You can also put solar breakers or surge suppressors in the extra spaces. In fact a little "entry panel" like this can be a boon to a solar installation, as it allows more solar ampacity.

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