Section E3405 Equipment Location and Clearances
Except as otherwise specified in Chapters 34 through 43, the dimension of the working space in the direction of access to panelboards and live parts of other equipment likely to require examination, adjustment, servicing or maintenance while energized shall be not less than 36 inches (914 mm) in depth. Distances shall be measured from the energized parts where such parts are exposed or from the enclosure front or opening where such parts are enclosed. In addition to the 36-inch dimension (914 mm), the work space shall not be less than 30 inches (762 mm) wide in front of the electrical equipment and not less than the width of such equipment. The work space shall be clear and shall extend from the floor or platform to a height of 6.5 feet (1981 mm) or the height of the equipment, whichever is greater. In all cases, the work space shall allow at least a 90-degree (1.57 rad) opening of equipment doors or hinged panels. Equipment associated with the electrical installation located above or below the electrical equipment shall be permitted to extend not more than 6 inches (152 mm) beyond the front of the electrical equipment.
- Where the equipment is installed above a lay-in ceiling, there shall be an opening not smaller than 22 inches by 22 inches (559 mm by 559 mm), or in a crawl space, there shall be an accessible opening not smaller than 22 inches by 30 inches (559 mm by 762 mm).
- The width of the working space shall be the width of the equipment enclosure or not less than 30 inches (762 mm), whichever is greater.
- Enclosure doors and hinged panels shall be capable of opening not less than 90 degrees.
- The space in front of the enclosure shall comply with the depth requirements of Table 110.26(A)(1) of NFPA 70. The maximum height of the working space shall be the height necessary to install the equipment in the limited space. A horizontal ceiling structural member or access panel shall be permitted in this space. [110.26(A) (1), (2), (3), (4)]
- In existing dwelling units, service equipment and panelboards that are not rated in excess of 200 amperes shall be permitted in spaces where the height of the working space is less than 6.5 feet (1981 mm). [110.26(A)(3) Exception No. 1]
- Meters that are installed in meter sockets shall be permitted to extend beyond the other equipment. Meter sockets shall not be exempt from the requirements of this section. [110.26(A)(3) Exception No. 2]
The indoor space equal to the width and depth of the panelboard and extending from the floor to a height of 6 feet (1829 mm) above the panelboard, or to the structural ceiling, whichever is lower, shall be dedicated to the electrical installation. Piping, ducts, leak protection apparatus and other equipment foreign to the electrical installation shall not be installed in such dedicated space. The area above the dedicated space shall be permitted to contain foreign systems, provided that protection is installed to avoid damage to the electrical equipment from condensation, leaks and breaks in such foreign systems (see Figure E3405.1).
Exception: Suspended ceilings with removable panels shall be permitted within the 6-foot (1829 mm) dedicated space.