How to wire an electrical meter box

Written by cecilia harsch Google
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Electrical meter box wiring is the responsibility of the owner of the home. Learning how to wire an electrical meter box and doing it yourself can save you from spending dollars that you might otherwise not need to spend. Should your local electricity company allow you to, take advantage and do your own wiring rather than hiring a professional electrician.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 3 wires for service entrance
  • 3 wires for breaker panel
  • White electrical tape
  • Utility knife
  • Box-end adjustable wrench

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Measure the distance from your service entrance to the electrical meter box and from the meter box to your home’s breaker panel. You need 2 sets of 3 wires to wire an electrical meter box. Cut 3 wires equalling the measurement from the service entrance to the meter box plus 2 feet. Cut 3 wires equalling the measurement from the meter box to the breaker panel plus 2 feet. Each set of wires must be gauged according to the meter box amperage.

  2. 2

    Label 3 wires as service entrance wires and 3 wires as breaker panel wires. The service entrance wires provide electricity from your service provider to the electrical meter box and are commonly the longer of the 2 sets. Separate the sets of wires. Wrap white electrical tape around both ends of 1 wire in each set. These are the neutral wires.

  3. 3

    Strip 1 inch of insulation off both ends of all 6 wires, using a utility knife.

  4. 4

    Familiarise yourself with the interior of the meter box. There are 6 lugs in the meter box: 2 lugs are located in the centre of the box and oriented vertically, one on top of the other; 2 lugs are located to the left of the centre lugs, one located toward the top of the meter box and the other located toward the bottom. The remaining 2 lugs are located to the right of the centre lugs, at the top and bottom of the meter box.

  5. 5

    Connect the service entrance wire set to the electrical meter box: Slide the neutral wire into the bottom centre lug and slide the remaining 2 wires into the lugs located to the left and the right of the centre lug. Tighten all lugs with a box-end adjustable wrench, holding the wires firmly into place.

  6. 6

    Connect the breaker panel wire set to the electrical meter box by connecting the wires to the remaining lugs in the same manner as you did in step five.

Tips and warnings

  • Meter boxes are designed much like large switches; you can connect to either side and it will operate the way it was designed, allowing electricity to flow through the actual meter, keeping track of each kilowatt hour you use.
  • Check with your local electric company or municipality for any restrictions about the wiring of your meter box, as each area has its own specific requirements.

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