Kitchen small appliance Circuits


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Old 03-20-04, 12:28 PM
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Kitchen small appliance Circuits

Reading a DIY book. it mentions the following requirement for Small appliance circuits:

"Two 20 Amp, 120 V circuits supply power to countertop and eating areas for small appliances. One 12/3 cable, fed by a 20AMP double pole breaker, wires both circuits."

i don't understand this statement. why do i need to use 12/3 and double pole breaker? why can't i just use 12/2 cable and have two different breakers meaking two circuits?

appreciate the help
fdonger
 
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Old 03-20-04, 12:47 PM
imjerry
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You Can

Just easier running 1 12/3 than 2 12/2's
But no double pole breaker is allowed in that case with 12/3, need 2 separate breakers on different phases with a common neutral !!
 
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Old 03-20-04, 01:33 PM
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You must have two 20 amp GFCI protected circuits feeding the kitchen countertop area. This can be done with two separate circuits, or with a single multiwire circuit.

Some people like to put the top half of the duplex receptacles on one circuit with the botton half on the other circuit. If you don't want to do this, you should at least alternate each circuit, every other receptacle, to make it easier to avoid overloading either circuit.

You can use two separate 20 amp circuits or you can use a 20 amp multiwire circuit. A multiwire circuit makes it easier to split the duplex receptacles, but requires a GFCI at the breaker panel, and pigtailing the connections (including the neutral connection) at the receptacles. If you do not use GFCI breakers, then you must GFCI protect the circuits at or before the first receptacle.

If you use a multiwire circuit you can use either a 220 volt 20 amp breaker, or two single 110 volt breakers. However, if a multiwire circuit is used, I suggest a 220 volt GFCI breaker, which forces power to come from each half of your incoming 220. With single breakers and a multiwire circuit you need to make sure that you use one breaker from each half of the incoming power.
 
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Old 03-20-04, 04:40 PM
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Although it could be done either way, I strongly suggest you do it the way you're comfortable with. Two single-pole 20-amp breakers and two runs of 12/2. This way is ever so much simpler and avoids all kinds of potential mistakes. The parts for this are easier to find at your home center, and the job will almost certainly be cheaper.
 
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Old 03-20-04, 07:03 PM
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thanks for all the great advice.. i think i will keep it simple and use the separate 20amp breakers.

Use GFCI receptacles and alternate them so not to overload..

thanks again!
 
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Old 03-20-04, 07:28 PM
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That's fine. You only need two GFCI outlets. Put them as the first outlet on the circuit and connect the next outlet to the load side of the GFCI.

I suggest to alternate them because it makes it fairly easy to put avoid overloading the circuit, if you have a choice between an outlet to the right and one to them left that are on different circuits. If both nearby outlets are on the same circuit then your only choice is to move the appliance.
 
 

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