I have a 200 amp GE panel with a 100 amp GE sub panel in my home. I have several open slots for additional circuits.
I need to add some additional circuits for my garage workshop. Before I do, however, I want to understand the set up as it is now. In order to do so, I have some questions:
1.) Even though the mail panel is rated at 200 amps, the primary breaker is only rated at 150 amps. This seems odd to me. Is it really a simple matter of changing out the primary breaker to a 200 amp breaker to add more capacity? I ask because it seems to me, based on the amp ratings on the current breakers, even just accounting for the major 220 volt items, totals more than 150 amps. (Regardless, I have never had any breaker trip due to an overload.) For instance, I have separate upstairs and downstairs HVAC systems (with gas heat), an electric range, an electric oven, and an electric clothes dryer (all 220 v).
2.) One of the apparently 220 double breakers is for the clothes washing machine. However, the only outlet
in the laundry room for the washing machine is a 15 amp 110 v one, which is sufficient. Why is there a double breaker for this?
3.) Do I need to determine the actual maximum simultaneous usage of all the electric items in order to determine my actual available amps?