Converting 220 to 2-110 circuits for outdoor island

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Old 03-26-19, 11:29 AM
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Converting 220 to 2-110 circuits for outdoor island

Hi everyone. Thanks in advance for reading. My question deals with converting an unused 220v circuit to 2, 110v circuits. I will admit I should have done a better job planning for the electrical...but I am in the process of building an outdoor grill island, L-shaped with a grill that needs a 110 outlet, a mini-fridge, decorative lighting, and a few extra outlets. I have conduit run under the cement patio ready to pull wires, however where the conduit enters my basement, I have to then run across the entire width of my basement to the other side of the house where the electrical box is located...and I have drywall ceilings throughout most of the basement. Like I said...poor planning but it is what it is now. However, I have a 220 circuit that is not in use (I remodeled a laundry room and changed it to a bathroom and just capped off the 220 that was for the dryer). The wire for the 220 runs a few feet away from where the conduit for the bbq island enters the basement (and there is no drywall in this part of basement so the 220 wire is easily accessible). My question is, can I cut the 220wire, splice into it, and then use that to create 2- 110v circuits to use for the bbq island? Are there any code issues I should be aware of? I know I have to use GFCI outlets outside, remove the double pole breaker and replace with 2- 20amp breakers? If someone could give me a step-by-step including type of wire to use, how many outlets per circuit, etc I would really appreciate it. Just for reference, I am moderately handy and have done very basic electrical projects, but am by no means an expert. Thanks!
 
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Old 03-26-19, 12:20 PM
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What you're describing is called a multiwire branch circuit (MWBC). If your abandoned 240V dryer circuit contains four copper wires (black, red, white, bare) then you can convert it to an MWBC for use in the BBQ. If it has only three wires, it cannot be reused for this purpose. If you have four aluminum wires, you can use it but will need to buy special connectors.

Assuming four wires, you would need to replace the double-pole 30A breaker with a 20A double-pole breaker. Run the dryer cable into a 4x4 steel junction box, and from that box connect to your conduit. You would then pull #12 copper THWN wires in black, red, white and green through the conduit from the dryer junction box to the BBQ junction box.
 
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Old 03-26-19, 12:32 PM
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Thanks for the quick reply. The dryer circuit is in fact 4 copper wires so I am in luck! Do you have any suggestions on how to divide the two circuits? I was thinking the mini-fridge should either have it's own circuit or maybe the fridge plus an outlet (for charging phones, etc). Then I was thinking the grill (for electrical ignition and grilling lights inside cover of grill) and two to three more outlets would be on the other circuit. Thanks again for the info...exactly what I was looking for!

Craig
 
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Old 03-26-19, 01:15 PM
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I like to have at least one circuit outside with nothing important or anything that needs to run all the time. So, if you ever need to plug in a high drain power tool when working in the yard I wouldn't want it to trip the breaker on my beer fridge or kill the radio (gotta have tunes to work). So, I would have one circuit for your mini fridge, lights and an outlet for general use. Then I'd have the other circuit for high draw items like a grill lighter and outdoor power tools. That way at night when you are trying to light the grill if the breaker trips you're not left in the dark... and you still have your music and cold beverage.
 
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Old 03-26-19, 02:06 PM
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First you will need to change the double pole 30 amp breaker that is there now to a double pole 20 amp. Regular duplex receptacles can not be on a 30 amp circuit.
From the end of the existing cable run a red, black white and green ground in your conduit out to the island. Then at your island make one circuit using the black, white and green. Make the second circuit using the red white and green. The white neutral is shared going back to the panel.
 
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Old 03-26-19, 02:10 PM
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Hi, I would consider using a 60 Amp 4 circuit sub panel , bring the dryer feed into it, then bring your conduit into it also, install a ground buss and possibly GFCI breakers to feed the bar area, I would split the outlets between the 2 circuits.
Leave the 2pole 30 in the main panel.
Use THWN or XHHW insulation for the conductors.
Geo
 
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Old 03-28-19, 12:48 PM
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Thanks everyone for the great info. Working on the project today!
 
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Old 03-28-19, 01:44 PM
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I was thinking pretty equal to what Geo suggest, but since I am outdated on NEC I did not dare to say so. :-)
 
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Old 03-29-19, 08:05 AM
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So far so good...new question

Everyone had great advice but I went with the plan described by ibpooks...it seemed the simplest and more on my skill level. I replaced the breaker and connected a 12/3 wire to the existing run in my basement, pulled it through the conduit that runs under my concrete patio. The conduit that runs under the patio is flexible PVC and is stubbed off after it comes through the patio. Due to where the conduit comes through the concrete, I have to split the wire at that point, running one line left, and the other line to the right. My question is what type of conduit should I use for the wires running through the steel frame of the bbq island? Should I switch to flexible metal conduit? I've also attached a photo of a rough drawing if that helps. Thanks for any info you all can provide.

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Last edited by PJmax; 03-30-19 at 01:47 PM. Reason: resized/reoriented picture
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Old 03-29-19, 02:58 PM
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What type of cable is the 12-3? Some cannot be used outside or buried.
 
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Old 03-30-19, 08:24 AM
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I bough 12-3, UF-B from Southwire. I'm hoping that is the right one. It says "outdoor" on the plastic.
 
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Old 03-30-19, 10:59 AM
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UF can be used outside and buried. It does require protection when emerging from below grade.
 
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Old 04-01-19, 06:13 AM
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I would use metallic liquidtight conduit or EMT conduit and Bell boxes for the wiring inside the BBQ island. The main reason being that this area will be a prime target for rodent infiltration and they can easily ruin plastic wiring methods.
 
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Old 04-02-19, 11:04 AM
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Great advice.

Thanks ibpooks. Great advice...didnít think of the rodent issue. From what Iíve read, it sounds like I need to pigtail the connections right.
 
 

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