Is this OK for a 15 amp circuit


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Old 01-21-14, 09:05 AM
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Is this OK for a 15 amp circuit

We have a new baby on the way, and we are working on updating that baby's nursury with new electrical. I plan on running an all new 15 amp circuit to the room to power both the receptacles and the lighting. Based on the room configuration, we plan on putting in 7 duplex receptacles. For lighting, we have a ceiling fan with lights (3 light bulbs), as well as a light in the closet. Will a single 15 amp circuit be enough? Being a bedroom, I don't expect high usage. If need be, It probably wouldn't be much work to split up and put the lights on their own circuit, but I would rather just run one new circuit if possible.

The room is roughly 12.5' x 10' so that would equate to about 375 W for lighting (125 sq ft x 3). 7 recepticals x 180 = 1260 W for recepticals. I'm at about 1635 W total for that room based on my calculations, which is about 90% of a 15A breaker (1800W). Being a bedroom, I don't expect a condition where there is a full load on the breaker.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 09:11 AM
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Will a single 15 amp circuit be enough?
A 15 amp circuit will probably be enough, but I'd install a 20 amp circuit. This circuit will need to be AFCI protected so that means you'll need an AFCI breaker. How are you powering the required smoke detector? The smoke detector also needs to be AFCI protected. You will need to install tamper resistant receptacles. 15 amp devices are acceptable, but I would advise always checking with your AHJ for their requirements as well.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 09:56 AM
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Our town uses the 1975 electrical code, so our local code doesn't require AFCI's for new breakers. I've already talked to the local inspector to verify what local code they were following.

The original wiring to the room was un-grounded 14/2 on a 15 amp breaker. That single breaker was powering that bedroom (4 receptacle, ceiling fan, & closet light), along with the dining room lights, hallway lights, and one receptacle in the garage (don't ask me why that one is there).

The room already has a smoke detector installed, & I don't plan on changing it. I already have the tamper resistant receptacles as well. Since it will be our baby's room, I wanted to go tamper resistent, even though our local code doesn't require it.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 10:13 AM
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Wow...'75 code? I've seen a few cycles back....but that's almost 40 yrs!
 
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Old 01-21-14, 10:21 AM
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Personally, I like the lights and receptacles to be on a different circuit so you could plug a light into the wall while working on the fixture in the ceiling.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 10:56 AM
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Yeah, I was surprised to hear they were going that far back. I guess that is what you get when you live in a village with about 3000 people. The inspector also told me that they aren't going to inspect an existing home. I told him I planned on rewiring most of the house, and his words to me were "what you do in your own walls is up to you, we aren't going to inspect an existing structure."

Now, we plan on finishing our basement at some point down the road, I wonder if they will want to inspect that since it will be more of a remodel (frame new walls).
 
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Old 01-21-14, 11:18 AM
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IMO that is no way to run an inspection department nor does it enhance the life safety of the citizens.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 11:20 AM
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Yeah. It seemed a little strange to me. That could explain the mess of wiring that we encountered when we moved in. We are going through and updating room by room, starting with the new baby's room first.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 03:48 PM
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The original wiring to the room was un-grounded 14/2 on a 15 amp breaker. That single breaker was powering that bedroom (4 receptacle, ceiling fan, & closet light), along with the dining room lights, hallway lights, and one receptacle in the garage (don't ask me why that one is there).
I would leave the lights on that 15A circuit and run one new 20A circuit for the receptacles. Being without all power in a room is a PITA in any case. In a nursery it could be a disaster.

Since it will be our baby's room,
I would install an AFCI breaker for the new circuit, regardless of local requirements. I would consider replacing the one for the lighting circuit as well, and I would add those breakers as needed while proceeding with the remodel. AFCI is an important addition to the life-safety tools we have available as we tame the lightening and bring it into our homes.

The original wiring to the room was un-grounded 14/2 on a 15 amp breaker. That single breaker was powering that bedroom (4 receptacle, ceiling fan, & closet light), along with the dining room lights, hallway lights, and one receptacle in the garage (don't ask me why that one is there).
You may already know this, but you're gonna love getting new 20A circuits with GFCI protection in your garage, kitchen, bathroom, outside, etc.
 
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Old 01-21-14, 06:03 PM
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Gee, if I'd have known about this place 20 years ago and become an electrician... instantly.
I've seen a few rural areas like this in years past, every time the local industry had a layoff, everybody and his brother was an electrician. The dogcatchers did the inspections. When a new home was built the only inspection was the final; if the lights came on in every room - PASS. If the toilets flushed - PASS.

I would install an AFCI breaker for the new circuit, regardless of local requirements. I would consider replacing the one for the lighting circuit as well, and I would add those breakers as needed while proceeding with the remodel. AFCI is an important addition to the life-safety tools we have available as we tame the lightening and bring it into our homes.
I couldn't agree more. You are talking about the safety of not only your new baby, but your whole family.
 
 

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