Are your appliances operating safely? Or does your morning routine involve tripping a breaker when you make coffee, adding extra strain on other appliances in your home and kitchen?
If this sounds familiar and you want to make sure your home appliances will run safely at any time, then you need to consider dedicated circuits to fix your wiring issues.
Dedicated circuits are actually required by the National Electrical Code for operating major electric appliances such as refrigerators, space heaters, washing machines, stoves, and more.
Dedicated circuits ensure the availability of sufficient power to safely run your appliances without overloading the system.
What is a Dedicated Circuit? How does it Work?
A dedicated circuit is a line coming directly from the panel to feed one single unit, be it an appliance, a plug, or a piece of equipment. It’s set aside with a specific purpose and a dedicated circuit breaker in your electric box.
Intended for use with a single appliance, no other appliance will utilize the energy from this circuit, hence, it’s dedicated. In fact, the code prohibits any other appliance to be fed from the same line.
This way, major appliances that demand a lot of electrical power can draw the required energy without overloading your system, tripping a circuit breaker, or blowing fuse. Dedicated circuits also prevent the overheating of wire insulation which can cause electrical fires.
Both efficient and cost-effective, dedicated circuits don’t just supply the right amount of amps to the designated appliance, but they can also increase the life expectancy of your breaker.
That being said, it’s important that your appliances are wired to a dedicated circuit with the correct wire size and amperage according to their needs. If the wire size and amperage aren’t properly compatible, this can also lead to overheating that may result in electrical fires.
What is an Overload? How to Prevent it?
Dedicated circuits can prevent overloading your system, but what exactly is an overload?
When several appliances are powered via a single circuit, it’s quite possible for the combined power consumption to exceed the capacity of the wire and the breaker.
If the demand becomes too much to handle, the breaker will trip off and cause excessive stress on the electrical system. This is known as overload.
Overload situations are especially common in older houses that were wired before the electrical code required dedicated circuits.
Here, you’ll often see one circuit feeding multiple appliances at the same time. For example, the microwave and the counter plugs or fridge and the toaster.
Overload incidents are also common in renovations where there wasn’t enough care to check if dedicated circuits were installed.
To prevent overloading the system, you should use dedicated circuits for your mid-range and heavy-duty appliances to make sure there’s always adequate power for each of their unique requirements.
What are the Types of Dedicated Circuits?
As we mentioned above, appliances should be wires to dedicated circuits with the correct size and amperage. While there are various amps available for dedicated circuits, the most widespread ones are 20 amps and 30 amps.
- A 15-20 amp circuit is suitable for mid-range appliances such as:
- Electric ovens
- Garbage disposals
- Washing machines
- Trash compactors
- Space heaters
- Room air conditioners
- Gas furnaces
- A 30-50 amp circuit works well for heavy-duty appliances. These breakers typically offer “double pole” protection to prevent the circuit from drawing too much energy, possibly causing a fire. Examples of appliances that require 30-50 amps include:
- Electric water heaters
- Electric ranges
- Central air conditioners
- Electric furnaces
- Water pumps
- Central vacuums
- Jacuzzis/hot tubs
If your circuit breakers are frequently tripping and you want your appliances to run safely, contact us today for an electrical inspection to set up dedicated circuits in your home.
Explore the posibilitys