National Electrical Installation Standards

Standards as High as Your Own

Thursday, November 14, 2019


My furnace in the house I had just bought froze and split, also bursting many pipes and the heating system.(FHW) The plumber doing the repairs says,(he is a licensed electrician as well), that if he does the work to connect the new furnace electrical work, he needs to replace the corroded and moldy entrance box and breakers. The insurance company says he can connect it up just fine without changing any of it. Who is correct? I really need to get the job rolling, but this question among others has held us up for 18 months. HELP!!  

Mick Tufts


Hey Mick thanks for your question. If the panelboard and circuit breakers are in the condition you describe then they should be replaced. Equipment integrity is necessary as stated in 110.12(B). The NEC is not considered retroactive and Annexes are not mandatory but maybe you should contact the AHJ (possibly the local electrical inspector) and ask them to see it there is an imminent hazard as described in ANNEX H, 80.9(B). That might convince the insurance company, but even if it doesn't replacing it is a better option than a fire or other problem in the future.

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