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Notice it says, “SERVICE DISCONNECTS” in the center between the upper breakers?This means that when all those top breakers are turned off—all power to the breakers in the panel will be off—including the lower breakers.These panels were common into the early 70’s and I still find them very often.Most panel manufacturers made such panels—-and in many different versions.(Bus bars are the energized metal bars that the circuit breakers connect to.) These panels are often crowded and no longer have ample space to accommodate modern wiring requirements.
The following picture is of a typical split bus panel with its dead-front cover in place.
The next picture is of a split bus panel with the cover off—notice how much it looks like the sub-panel picture above (well except for neatness)?
The blue dotted lines are where the power coming into the panel attach to the bus bars.
As a Seattle Home Inspector I love finding panels this nicely wired.
This type of panel will not usually have a main disconnect—it will be located at the electrical service equipment—-typically where the meters are located.