Do your panels comply with the NEC for circuit directory or identification?
Section 408.4 of the National Electrical Code requires:
"Every circuit and circuit modification shall be legibly identified as to its clear, evident, and specific purpose or use. The identification shall include sufficient detail to allow each circuit to be distinguished from all others. Spare positions that contain un-used over current devices or switches shall be described accordingly. The identification shall be included in a circuit directory that is located on the face or inside of the panel door in the case of panel board, and located at each switch on a switchboard. No circuit shall be described in a manner that depends on transient conditions of occupancy."
A panel directory is required at each panel. Each circuit must be clearly marked to indicate its specific purpose or use and must include enough detail to differentiate it from other circuits. Office lights or warehouse receptacles would not be sufficient information, even in a small facility added circuits in the future would create confusion. A new change in the 2008 code no longer allows circuit descriptions based on "transient conditions of occupancy" such as Jim's office lights because Jim will not always be the occupant of that office and there will be no way to know what office is being referred to once Jim is gone. Permanent room numbers would be a good way to identify areas especially if they are posted in the areas. Another 2008 change requires spare circuit breakers to be labeled accordingly.
Since 2005, hundreds of TXBCS customers use our Electrical Panel Organizers to identify their circuits. By combining a highly visible, color-coded, number-coordinated directory with matching breaker labels, finding the right breaker is fast and easy. Tripping the wrong breaker in an emergency, or shutting down a critical piece of equipment, a freezer for example, by mistake can be catastrophic.
What if you're not home? If you're at the office or away on a business trip? You get a call - the water heater, stove, range, TV, or other piece of electrical equipment quit working or worse has "burnt wiring" smell. How do you help? How do you guide someone to find the right breaker? Take the time now and be prepared with our TXBCS's system - it's the best around.
The directory index and each individual breaker label is made from flexible magnetic material. Simply place a numbered and color coded breaker label on the steel cover next to the breaker matching the description on the directory index. If you don't get in the right place the first time don't worry, it's easy to reposition. The labels don't use glue or other adhesive - they are little magnets and stick to the steel. Use the pre-defined index descriptions or write in your own for each breaker.