A split bus panel is an electrical panel which is split into two sections; a main section and a sub-main section, if you will. There is not a true main breaker in a split bus electrical panel type. Instead, the "main" section of the panel is built to allow up to six breakers to control the electrical loads in your home. One of the electrical breakers in the main section controls the entire "sub-main" portion of your panel. This means there is not a single breaker that will shut off power to your entire panel, and instead, all six "main" breakers must be shut off to ensure your electrical system is powered down.
Warning!!! Even with all six breakers shut off, the "main" bussing of the panel will still be energized! This means you or any unlicensed electrical layman SHOULD NEVER work on a split bus panel and only a qualified, licensed and bonded electrician should be allowed to do so. It's always best to call a licensed electrical contractor to analyze and/or repair your split bus electrical panel.
Split bus electrical panels can be very tricky to evaluate, because it is common for them to have had modifications made to them. These modifications could have been made before you owned the home, so you would not know if there are current inconsistencies, extra electrical load or wiring concerns you should have looked at and potentially repaired.
If you think you may have a split bus panel in your home and you would like to ensure your family is safe from any problems the panel may cause to your electrical system, contact Emerald State Electric, and we'll be happy go over your inspection, repair and/or replacement options with you. Call us at 253-EMERALD (363-7253) or send us an online quote request form.