Running Power to Detached Garage

grsthegreat

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Agree with most of previous. Run larger conduit for future (personally I’d run 2/2/2/4 XHHW aluminum in 1-1/4” conduit and use a 90 amp breaker. Then put a small 12 space panel in garage. Easier to do now than later. And alum XHHW is pretty cheep to purchase. You’ll have to bend over for the PVC though. There major gouging for it now.

need 1 ground rod at shop. add a separate ground buss in garage panel and separate all grounds and neutrals.

i would never place entire panel outdoors as weather takes a toll on breakers. We just place a main disconnect outside. All breaker indoors.

never hurts to add a spare conduit for future whatever. When 3/4 pvc used to be $3 per 10’ stick it was a no brainer. Now that its nearly $12/stick it starts to add up. When I ran my outbuildings i ran 2 extra 1-1/2” pipes. Now days I would need a loan.

NEVER run romex outside or underground. UF cable is ok, but I’ve repaired so many dead uf and direct buried lines in my 30+ years as an electrician I would never use the stuff. Uf is also miserable to work with, especially trying to strip the wires without scaring the copper.

but if you definately only want lights and a garage door opener, you usually can run either a single or double circuit without the need for a panel. Most inspectors only want a lock out device on the originating panel. Our inspectors also want an engraved nameplate specifying which breaker for outbuilding and a label at outbuilding showing where circuit originates if there’s no panel in garage.

have no idea of your inspectors requirements. But seriously, panels are dirt cheap.
 

grsthegreat

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I confess I have not priced conduit lately. So I have no clue on the cost of that. But I will know this summer ... I have a few thousand feet to run .... yikes!

But I still say that from one building to another, not a huge distance, any cost for conduit is cheap compared to trenching and backfill. YMMV. :)
Not so. A 2” stick of sch 40 pipe is nearly $2.50 PER FOOT.... if you can even find it. So 2000 feet could cost you 5 grand. The trench will be way way less expensive.

conduit is so ridiculous right now some of our utility companies are resorting to direct burial again as they can’t find pipe.
 

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My service (200 amp) is direct buried to my shop and the gas line is also in the same trench.
 

4570Man

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I confess I have not priced conduit lately. So I have no clue on the cost of that. But I will know this summer ... I have a few thousand feet to run .... yikes!

But I still say that from one building to another, not a huge distance, any cost for conduit is cheap compared to trenching and backfill. YMMV. :)

It’s about 4x what it was last year. Local prices are $1 a foot for 1”, $2.20 a foot for 2”, nearly $5 a foot for 2.5, and $6.5 a foot for 3”.
 

grsthegreat

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My service (200 amp) is direct buried to my shop and the gas line is also in the same trench.
Here, gas and water can’t share a common trench with electrical.
 

4570Man

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Here, gas and water can’t share a common trench with electrical.

That’s the rule here too. It would make more sense to me to run everything together vs strung all over the place. But I don’t care. I make more money digging ditches that way.
 

grsthegreat

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That’s the rule here too. It would make more sense to me to run everything together vs strung all over the place. But I don’t care. I make more money digging ditches that way.
Its more to do with them doing future repair I assume. I can just imaging needing to repair a water line 5 feet underground ( 2 ft below frost line) and having an elect and gas line in the way.
 

plowhog

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A 2” stick of sch 40 pipe is nearly $2.50 PER FOOT
The OP didn't specify how far between buildings. So let's guess 100 feet. At your price that's $250. Throw in some additional smaller conduit for CAT 5/6, and some schedule 40 PVC for water, and where are you? Well under $1,000 for conduit?

How much does a contractor charge to bring his mini-X, dig 100' of trench 24" deep, then back fill with sand, separate the conduit in the trench per code, then backfill with dirt, and then run a jumping jack on it to pack it down?

Would you really hire the contractor to dig that trench-- only to put a single direct bury cable in it? Maybe, so, but I wouldn't ....

I guess you could use a tractor with a middle buster to dig a trench-- but the OP didn't describe whether he is doing this to "code" or not ...

Finally, what is the cost to re-open the trench a 2nd time in the future to add something? :)
 

4570Man

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The OP didn't specify how far between buildings. So let's guess 100 feet. At your price that's $250. Throw in some additional smaller conduit for CAT 5/6, and some schedule 40 PVC for water, and where are you? Well under $1,000 for conduit?

How much does a contractor charge to bring his mini-X, dig 100' of trench 24" deep, then back fill with sand, separate the conduit in the trench per code, then backfill with dirt, and then run a jumping jack on it to pack it down?

Would you really hire the contractor to dig that trench-- only to put a single direct bury cable in it? Maybe, so, but I wouldn't ....

I guess you could use a tractor with a middle buster to dig a trench-- but the OP didn't describe whether he is doing this to "code" or not ...

Finally, what is the cost to re-open the trench a 2nd time in the future to add something? :)

Who takes the effort to backfill conduit with sand and then run a compactor through it? I throw out the bigger rocks which is a non existent problem if I’m using the ditch witch vs mini x and them dump the dirt back in and go. It settles a little bit but it’s a new construction nobody cares.
 

plowhog

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I'm going to stop posting in this thread. Because I am too biased.

Right now I'm sitting in my ranch house, looking at my barn 100 feet away. It's the barn served with undersized small wire and with crappy power, where I can't run a welder or anything too much past a light bulb. There's no low voltage wire or low voltage conduit-- gosh-- I wish I could put an alarm or CAT5 camera out there. Or maybe a mesh wifi device. And no water-- no schedule 40 pvc-- so I have to come into the house when I'm all dirty and foul things up in the house just to wash my hands. Or for the many other uses I would use water in a barn for ..... maybe water for animals? Radical thought, maybe?

But ... whoever preceded me and put in the undersized wire with direct bury saved some really good $$ back in the day. God they saved a lot not putting in a conduit. Wow, I hope they saved a ton! And as a bonus, they put a low-end cheapo Zinsco electrical panel in the barn-- you know, the cheap ones known to start fires because the breakers don't trip even when overloaded.

I have a tractor with backhoe, so I could fix it by trenching. But, the thought of digging up the old cheapo wire and running new conduit isn't pleasant. To trench again, I need to go through established flower beds with large plants, front yard lawn, a substantial amount of gravel driveway, and through roots from 100 foot tall oak trees that can reach 8 inch diameter or even bigger.

So ... I live with it because the effort to install conduit doing in the right way ... after the fact ... is too onerous.

But ... the original installer with the direct bury cheap wire--- saved some really good $$$. :) :)
 
 
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