Overkill? Did I go too far? 15A vs 20A

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Old 10-24-10, 01:07 PM
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Overkill? Did I go too far? 15A vs 20A

I have a plethora of 20A 120v circuits in my house for some unknown reason. Whenever I encounter one of these circuits I make sure I use the correct outlets and wire 12/2. Sometimes I encounter work from the PO that isn't up to par. My most recent interaction is one example.

There's a 20A circuit with 12/2 running to an outlet in my garage. The outlet is 15A non GFCI, there are also 2 other outlets that are fed off it. These 2 outlets are 15A and the wire running to them is 14/2. HOWEVER they are on the ceiling and designed to be used only by the garage door openers. I replaced the outlets with 20a GFCI and 12/2 wire. Of course I know the 2 garage door openers running simultaneously will NEVER pull 20A was it still worth it for me to fix? or did I apply too much effort for nothing?
 
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Old 10-24-10, 01:36 PM
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All wire does need to be #12. If all of the receptacles in the garage are on the same circuit only the first receptacle needs to be GFCI. If there is more then one place to plug in receptacles may be 15a.
 
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Old 10-25-10, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by supraman215 View Post
These 2 outlets are 15A and the wire running to them is 14/2. HOWEVER they are on the ceiling and designed to be used only by the garage door openers.
You were correct to replace the #14 with #12; a 20A breaker must have all #12 wire. The 20A T-slot receptacles are optional in the USA; code allows 15A receptacles on most 20A circuits. GFCI is required for all garage receptacles as of the 2008 code, however previous versions allowed non-GFCI in hard-to-reach places like on the ceiling or behind the fridge. Non-GFCI may have been legal when it was installed.

Of course I know the 2 garage door openers running simultaneously will NEVER pull 20A was it still worth it for me to fix?
They will someday if (when) the motor siezes. Or if someone hangs a retractable cord reel up there and runs additional tools from that circuit.
 
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Old 10-25-10, 10:43 AM
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GFI's used to have a tendency to trip on the larger inductive loads. Refrigerators, Garage door openers etc. I hear the newer versions are not so troublesome in this regard. hmm
 
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Old 10-26-10, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by ibpooks View Post
Or if someone hangs a retractable cord reel up there and runs additional tools from that circuit.
This is exactly what I was thinking. it was the reason I switched everything over. Though I would caution against running a 20A tool like a welder off of a retractable cord reel lol. Might have some start up issues.
 
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