Electrical Estimating Example: Tips for Estimating Circuit Breaker Installation on Energized and De-


The goal is to give an electrical estimating example how to cover the cost for installing circuit breakers in energized and de-energized panels.

Disclaimer: This information is NOT intended to suggest or give advice on safety standards for working on energized panels. Your company must determine your safety standards for live work.


You estimate according to your company’s safety standards when estimating working on live panels.

When estimating remodel jobs, circuit breaker termination labor requires estimating working in either:

  1. De-energized panels

  2. Energized panels

  3. Panels that must be de-energized during a scheduled shut down.

Electrical estimating example of circuit breaker termination in de-energized panels.


Circuit breaker termination in de-energized panels takes the least amount of time. Simply input each circuit breaker.


Example: Estimate Circuit breakers in de-energized panel. 1 – 1 Pole 20 Amp circuit breaker 1 – 2 Pole 40 Amp circuit breaker 1 – 3 Pole 50 Amp Circuit Breaker 1 – 3 Pole 125 Amp


Example below shows circuit breakers input to Rhino. Notice Red Rhino shows labor for each breaker.


Electrical estimating example of circuit breaker termination in energized panels.

Some companies require 2 people to be present when work occurs in live panels.


In that case you would add extra labor for 2 electricians to suit up with Kevlar suits and get set up with safety equipment needed.


Example: Estimate the same circuit breakers in energized panel when 2 people are required to do the installation.


In the example above 3 extra hours were added for time required for electricians to set up safety equipment needed to install the circuit breakers in a live panel.

You the estimator must determine how much extra time it will take.


Estimating circuit breaker termination panels for scheduled shut down, after hours.


Note: This information does not cover the actual process of scheduling a shut down.

Often times, written notice is required and someone actually has to sign off approval of the shutdown before it can occur.


Find out what is required and cover the cost.

In this example: The same number of circuit breakers need to be installed but.

  1. Your company does not allow work in live panels.

  2. Circuit breakers to be installed during shutdown after hours. (Overtime)

  3. 2 People are required to do the installation.

  4. Minimum hours you are required to pay electricians is 4 hours each.                                                                    

Note that 2 men at 4 hours at time-and-a-half equals 6 hours each. A total of 12 hours was added for the shutdown.


The cost of a shutdown makes installing just a few circuit breakers an expensive process.

Your results will vary but the goal is to cover all your costs when estimating installing circuit breakers in any condition required and to cover your cost

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