I have a load box that feeds power to my hot tub -240 50amp. There are no additional slots to add breakers.

Wondering what your experts suggest to be the best solution to keep the hot tub feed and add a 120 line with a breaker so I can feed my cable out to feed some outlets on the deck. Is there a way to jump off of this setup? Do I need an entirely new enclosure? Suggestions and guidance are greatly appreciated.

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    @crip659 yes, one screw, one wire, but there is a much larger problem in "jumping off of this setup", as the OP said: The 120 v circuit (probably 12 or 14 ga) would be protected by a 50 AMP BREAKER! NOT GOOD. In fact, really bad! Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 20:55

1 Answer 1


Paraphrasing the movie Jaws, You need a bigger box. If you can find the same brand and it's rated for the 50 AMP GFCI breaker, you could possibly re-use that breaker, since they are pretty expensive. It looks like you have a 4 wire service (2 hots, a neutral and a ground), so you have the feed to properly supply 120, my only concern would be the up stream breaker size if you plan to pull any appreciable amount of power on the 120 v circuits. Usually a hot tub power supply is oversized anyway, so it's not a big concern.

Next: You mentioned running NM (non metallic sheathed cable), sometimes called Romex which is just brand name like Kleenex, out on the deck...that's a NO GO!! It's not rated for outdoor applications. Any cabling below 8' from the ceiling needs to be protected, You could use UF which is rated for outdoor locations, but even so, it still needs to be protected. Protected means being installed inside a wall that's covered, boxed in, or in conduit, etc.. But there's no point in working with hard to work with UF since it'll need to be protected below 8' . In your case, conduit makes the most sense and use THHN/THWN which are individual wires. Yeah, harder to install, but way better and code legal.

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    100% code compliant answer, I use 5 lug nema 3r panels as my minimum spa panel for this very reason, and by code because of the heater and motors the panels are oversized and a fair load can be added +
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 20:13
  • @isherwood OK, I'll revise my answer, but people use the term Romex (yeah I know it's a brand name), but like Kleenex, it's commonly used for NM cable, unfortunately. Double checking the exact meaning of NM, many many sites refer to it as Romex. Still, I'll update my answer as you requested. Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 20:59
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    @isherwood he uses UF in the answer several times , no edit at this point all pros call UF UF and almost all pros call NMB Romex , they are vastly different as explained.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 21:08
  • @isherwood I get your point, just saying that, but lets face it, brands are often used instead of the actual product. Nobody says, would you please get me a facial tissue, instead they say, please get me a Kleenex. This may be dating me, but nobody said, " could you please photo copy this for me?, Instead they say, " could you Xerox this for me? A few others come to mind: Bandaid (adhesive bandage), Chapstick (lip balm) and the list goes on. . Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 21:23
  • @isherwood without running the risk of this getting conversational and moved to chat, even though we're not dealing with pros here for the most part, a non pro, walking into a HD or Lowes to get wire and asked for Romex, they'd get NM-B. I respect most of your comments, but let's not get too up-tight about this. Ed makes a great point in his previous comment. Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 21:34

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