National Electrical Installation Standards

Standards as High as Your Own

Thursday, June 3, 2021


Hello CQD and thanks for the great NEC question forum. Over the past 10-15 years or so there's been a big push to not have more than one conductor under a terminal screw, lugs, neutral bars, ground bars, etc. But my question is to address the opposite scenario; one conductor split under two terminals screws. This is where the installer is pulling a large neutral cable like a #2 CU into an existing panel and no existing lug is large enough to accommodate it, so instead the installer separates the strands and insert half under one terminal screw and the other half is inserted under the adjacent terminal screw. Ignoring the fallback answer for the moment of follow the manufacturer's instructions, mainly because they might not be readily available, is there a code that prohibits splitting the conductor like this?

Thank you.

Rich Cressotti



Hell Rich,

The NEC does prohibit the installation as described. See Section 110.14 in addition to the instructions by the lug or terminal manufacturer. 

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