If you're going to wire something incorrectly, why not go all the way!? With electrical it's important to have a big finish!
The word "lug" has many definitions.
One is the more common usage, where my wife would apply it to, well, me for instance! "Can you carry this upstairs for me, you big lug?" Well, if the shoe fits...
But another definition is the one used by the electrical industry - a projection on an object by which it may be fixed in place.
In a panel box wires are held in place in a buss bar by lugs, or flat screws, which put pressure onto the end and hold them in place.
These are the two neutral buss bars, or busses, in a panel box.
See all the lugs (screws) holding the wires in place?
Look closely and you will see four places where two wires are held by one screw.
This is called a "double lug," or, more commonly a double tap.
IT IS INCORRECT, AND LIKELY NOT DONE BY AN ELECTRICIAN.
It means someone was fooling around in the box, wiring up new circuits when "remodeling" was done in the house.
I often see multiple, multiple taps (no, not redundant) in panel boxes when there has been remodeling in a house.
But look on the left side! We have a surprise!
There is the fabled TRIPLE TAP!
I don't see this much. For me it's about the equivalent of seeing a leprechaun riding a pink unicorn pony led by Sasquatch to reveal the Pot 'O Gold.
Once someone sent me a photo of a quadruple tap, but the installer must have had to file off the wires to get them all to fit.
You can see that these three wires fill up the hole under the lug.
Now, looking at the two busses (strips) there are plenty of holes where they could have located these white wires.
It IS appropriate to locate a white together with a bare ground wire. And the buss bar underneath has unused locations.
But they chose to double up and triple up instead!
And they sure built to a big finish!
My recommendation: remodeling often indicates that a contractor came in to do all the work. While he might think he's a plumber and carpenter and HVAC specialist AND electrician, he probably is not. So it's fun to check the panel box! And see a Pot 'O Gold at the end of the buss bar!
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560