Kitchen circuit re-design - Existing is a mess

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  #1  
Old 12-31-11, 12:25 AM
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Kitchen circuit re-design - Existing is a mess

I've been getting a little confused reading through NEC 210.52, dwelling unit receptacle outlets, specifically on the kitchen.

Attached below is a diagram of my main floor circuits. The lighting circuits aren't included on the diagram, those are all separate now (two circuits, alternating pattern in case one trips.)

My panel is full, but I know I need to make some more room. Luckily one is for the pool which was taken out before we got the house. I can make some other room by combining a few dedicated circuit outlets in the basement that don't need to be dedicated with what we do down there.

Just want to make sure I get this right.

So, there are six circuits in my kitchen:
#2 - 15A, 14 AWG - OMG what idiots. Microwave is on the same circuit as the family room AND garage. Microwave is marked to run 14-15A, LOL. Even though it's a 15A circuit, microwave is plugged into the only 20A outlet in the house. (Microwave does use a 15A plug.)
#4 - 20A, 12 AWG - Two 15A duplex outlets. We never use these. One is underneath the windows, and the other is behind a desk + hutch.
#6 - 20A, 12 AWG - Two 15A duplex outlets. One outlet runs the igniter on the gas stove, and the other runs the fridge (marked to run 4.5A)
#11 - 15A, 14 AWG - OMG what idiots. Garbage disposal is on the same cirucit as two and a half bedrooms, including my computer. Explains why my two monitors just died. Disposal is marked to run at 8.1A.
#13 - 15A, 14 AWG - One 15A duplex outlet. We have a small nightlight and a toaster oven plugged in.
#17 - 20A, 12 AWG - Dedicated outlet for dishwasher.

I know I need to run a dedicated 20A circuit using 12 AWG to the microwave.

I know I need to get the garbage disposal onto its own circuit

So, my questions:

Question 1 - Since the oven is gas, and only needs electricity for igniting the gas, is it OK that it's on the same circuit as the fridge? It's a 20A circuit, fridge is marked for only 4.5A.

Question 2 - Code requires at least 2 20A small appliance circuits. I'm getting confused about that term. Anyways, are circuits 4 and 13 my small appliance circuits? If so, I have a problem with a 15A circuit powering a sole 15A outlet, right? Either way, I need to run 12/2 and replace breaker with 20A, right? Then, I need to either replace single duplex outlet with a 20A version, or put another 15A duplex outlet somewhere else?

Question 3 - Is it OK for the garbage disposal to be on a 15A circuit, since it's marked as being 8.1A? Or is this required by code to be a 20A circuit?

Question 4 - So, I have one free breaker right now. I think I need to add a dedicated microwave circuit, and a dedicated garbage disposal circuit. That'll put six circuits in the kitchen alone. Is there any way that I can combine any of this, or do I need six? I need to squeeze out another circuit to put the garage & new outdoor outlets, and another circuit to actually make the bathrooms on their own circuit.

Question 5 - Related to question 4. Is circuit 4 needed to count as my second small appliance circuit, or do any of the others count for that? I'd love to free up circuit 4, and put those outlets on an existing circuit.

I'm really seeing the value of having a new home, AND getting to go in there while it's being built!!!

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  #2  
Old 12-31-11, 06:09 AM
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Question 1 - Since the oven is gas, and only needs electricity for igniting the gas, is it OK that it's on the same circuit as the fridge? It's a 20A circuit, fridge is marked for only 4.5A.
Yes, that would be fine.

Question 2 - Code requires at least 2 20A small appliance circuits. I'm getting confused about that term. Anyways, are circuits 4 and 13 my small appliance circuits? If so, I have a problem with a 15A circuit powering a sole 15A outlet, right? Either way, I need to run 12/2 and replace breaker with 20A, right? Then, I need to either replace single duplex outlet with a 20A version, or put another 15A duplex outlet somewhere else?
The small appliance circuits are the receptacles (outlets) that serve the counter top. They are for things like coffee pots, toasters, blenders, etc. The small appliance circuits are required to be 20 amp. Unless the receptacles are a single receptacle (IE only one place to plug into) you may use all 15 amp devices if they are duplex. 15 amp receptacles have the same inside "guts" as their 20 amp counterparts.

Question 3 - Is it OK for the garbage disposal to be on a 15A circuit, since it's marked as being 8.1A? Or is this required by code to be a 20A circuit?
Yes. 15 amp is fine.

Question 4 - So, I have one free breaker right now. I think I need to add a dedicated microwave circuit, and a dedicated garbage disposal circuit. That'll put six circuits in the kitchen alone. Is there any way that I can combine any of this, or do I need six? I need to squeeze out another circuit to put the garage & new outdoor outlets, and another circuit to actually make the bathrooms on their own circuit.
Since your are to the max of your panel you may want to consider installing a sub panel. This could be done for only about $75 worth of material. IMO the more circuits in a kitchen the better (within reason ) You could also then split up the other house loads how you want.

Question 5 - Related to question 4. Is circuit 4 needed to count as my second small appliance circuit, or do any of the others count for that? I'd love to free up circuit 4, and put those outlets on an existing circuit.
If I read your plan correctly, #4 looks like it would be the dining room. This is also required to be a 20 amp circuit and should not part of the small appliance circuits.
 
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Old 12-31-11, 06:17 AM
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Just curious, does your builder do his own wiring or does he use a electrical contractor?
 
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Old 12-31-11, 07:39 AM
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You didn't mention the total number of spaces in your existing panel box. You can also add new circuits to balance the load by installing mini-twin breakers in place of a single pole breaker. What is the amp rating on your Main breaker?
 
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Old 12-31-11, 07:45 AM
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Tandem breakers may only be used if the panel is rated to use them.
 
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Old 12-31-11, 11:13 AM
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If I read your plan correctly, #4 looks like it would be the dining room. This is also required to be a 20 amp circuit and should not part of the small appliance circuits.
Really? I thought the dining room could be on the same circuit as the small appliance circuits.
 
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Old 12-31-11, 12:34 PM
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Really? I thought the dining room could be on the same circuit as the small appliance circuits.
Sorry, I was not more clear. You may share the counter top receptacles with the dining room (or similar area) if you want. It is acceptable by the Code. I however, do not think it is a good idea. I like to keep the counter top circuits on their own.
 
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Old 12-31-11, 12:47 PM
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just wondering why you would give the dining itís own circuit?
 
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Old 12-31-11, 12:57 PM
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If the kitchen is located over a section of an un-finished basement , then set a sub-panel(S-P ) under the kitchen , and by re-locating existing circuits to the new S-P you will provide space in the service panel for a 60 amp two-pole CB that will connect to a 60 amp Feeder Cable that supplies the new S-P.

You can wire the dishwasher and garbage disposal with cables routed thru holes drilled thru the floor inside the base cabinets; extending new cables up the wall to a point to receptacles above the counter-top is more difficult.

To be fully Code-compliant you'll need two 20 amp circuits for counter-top receptacles; if my understanding is correct , your circuit-descriptions did not refer to circuits that suppy such receptacles ; perhaps you already have such such circuits.
 
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Old 01-01-12, 05:51 PM
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just wondering why you would give the dining itís own circuit?
It is not so much I would give the dining room it own circuit, but it is to keep the counter receptacles off anything else. You start making coffee, toast and run an electric waffle maker and you could start blowing circuits.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 01-01-12 at 08:45 PM. Reason: Fix Quote Tag
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