20 amp breaker for small circuit?


Old 03-23-05, 11:12 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 34
20 amp breaker for small circuit?


I've got a small circuit I'd like to wire an exterior outlet and motion sensing light to...the outlet and light are already installed, and the wires are run into the basement.
I've got some brand new 20-amp breakers laying around, and some 12/2 wire.
I've got one empty slot for the breaker on my panel.
Everything I've read says to use 15-amp breakers for lighting and outlet circuits and use 20-amps for dedicated appliance circuits etc.
My question is...will the 20-amp breaker with the heavier gauge wire work?

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Old 03-23-05, 11:17 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
There is nothing wrong with having lighting on a 20 amp circuit. There is nothing wrong with a dedicated circuit being 15 amp.

To use your 20 amp breaker (assuming it is made for your panel), ALL the wiring in this circuit must be 12 gauge (or larger).

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