Can I replace a 220 breaker with two 20 amp breakers?


Old 09-21-04, 09:24 PM
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Can I replace a 220 breaker with two 20 amp breakers?

I recently purchased new kitchen appliances. I am replacing an electric range with a gas range, therefore I no longer need the 220 for the range. I am installing an over the range microwave and a dishwasher.

I want to use one 20 amp breaker for the microwave and one 20 amp breaker for the dishwasher. Can the 220 breaker be pulled and replaced with two of the 20 amp breakers?

Your advice and response will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-22-04, 05:28 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Yes, you can remove the 220 breaker and install two 110 breakers. However, the breakers must be designed for and fit your panel.

Be careful doing this. I recommend shutting off the main breaker or main disconnect before opening the panel.
Old 09-22-04, 05:34 AM
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I'm assuming you are thinking of two new home runs to go along with the two single pole breakers and not just reusing the cable for the old range. If that's true, then yes, you can replace the breakers with 20A single pole ones (just make sure you use 12 AWG.

Remember that, depending on its location, the receptacle for the microwave may have to be GFCI protected.
Old 09-22-04, 07:04 AM
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Thanks so much for responding. I thought it could be done, but you have put my mind at ease.

Yes, there will be new runs to the individual 110 breakers, and I made certain to purchase square D breakers, same brand as my panel.

srj: The receptacle for the microwave will be in the cabinet above it... will a standard outlet be sufficient?

Thanks so much!
Old 09-22-04, 07:27 AM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Unless you are completely out of space in your panel, I recommend you just leave this circuit alone and install your two new breakers somewhere else in the panel. Why mess up a perfectly good circuit? You can always do it later if necessary.
Old 09-22-04, 09:40 AM
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I think you should be ok with a standard receptacle in the cabinet above the microwave. Section 210.8(a)(6) only requires GFCI protection for kitchen receptacles "where the receptacles are installed to serve the countertop surfaces." You might use a single receptacle (one outlet) so that the microwave is the only thing that can be plugged in there.

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