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Old 05-10-2014, 07:55 PM   #1
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Help with converter/breaker issue

I'm in the process of replacing the OEM converter in a new 25fb with a Powermax Boondocker. I was going to reuse the old 120v wiring to supply the new converter, but I noticed it was 14 gauge and it was coming from a 20a breaker. I pulled the breaker. See photo. It's a double breaker so I'm only concerned with half. There are two wires coming into one side of the breaker. One is 12ga from I don't know where. The other wire is the 14ga going to the converter. The 12ga and 14ga wires are crimped together right at the back of the breaker. Does this look right? I thought it was against code to double tap a breaker?Attachment 211632

I've destroyed the OEM converter removing it from the case, so I've got to proceed. I also feel that I should replace the 14ga wiring to the converter with 12ga. I just wasn't sure about the double tap, but I guess I've got no choice. I don't think there is room for another breaker.

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Old 05-10-2014, 08:19 PM   #2
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Old 05-10-2014, 09:09 PM   #3
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Hi Landrum

Two answers for you to consider.

1) From a standpoint of the NEC, you would either have to replace the breaker with a 15/20 tandem breaker or run 20 gauge wire as you describe. Some breakers are listed for double-tapped connections while most are not so look at the label. If they are crimped using a listed pressure connector that only presents one "wire" to the breaker then the connection is not double-tapped as far as the NEC is concerned.

15/20 tandem breakers are available, see
Square D by Schneider Electric Homeline 1-15 Amp 1-20 Amp Single-Pole Tandem Circuit Breaker-HOMT1520CP at The Home Depot

2) In practice no converter is going to draw over 15 amps (they have internal overcurrent protection well below that) and if that's the only connected load the hazard as a practical matter of 14 gauge wire is infinitesimal, particularly when you consider that with modern insulation, the ampacity of 14 gauge wire is much greater than 20 amps.
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Old 05-11-2014, 07:11 AM   #4
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Ok thanks. I assumed the issue with double taps was the capacity of the breaker, but it sounds like it is more an issue of the physical connection of the wire. The two wires going into the converter breaker are crimped together before the breaker, so it may be okay. That said I may use a pig tail and run 12 ga wires to the new boondocker since I have it open anyway.
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