Splitting A Receptacle


Old 11-11-01, 09:41 AM
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I am adding a dishwasher and disposal to my kitchen. I ran wire from the breaker to a new box under the sink, then wire up to a switch on the wall to control 1/2 of the receptical (for the disposal). That is all I plan for this plug. I need help wiring the plug and found the information BUT it says "This type of connection, which divides an outlet, can only be done in a middle of a run installation, not at a receptical at the beginning or end". Is this true? I only plan for one divided receptical dedicated to the dishwasher & disposal, so this receptical would be the beginning & end end of the run.

Thanks for any help you can give me.

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Old 11-11-01, 01:23 PM
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You can install a switch receptacle on the beginning to a multioutlet branch circuit. What was said was an attempt to warn you that if you wire in the beginning of a circuit on a multioutlet branch circuit you may end up with a bunch of receptacles that are switched though that was not your intent.

You can run more oultets on a power out cable from that 1/2 switched half hot receptcle. But you won't have enough screws on the receptacle to allow the connection. YOu will have to land your constant hot conductor in a wire nut, then install a pigtail and the power out cable's hot conductor in that wirenut. The use the pigtail to connect to that split receptacle. Beginning or end of a circuit only matters if you try to connect all conductors to the scews of the device. You would have three wires but only two screws to connect them otherwise.

What you are doing is no problem. Just remember to remove the tab between the two brass screws of that split receptacle.

Hope this helps

Old 11-11-01, 05:21 PM
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Thanks for the advise. That will be the only receptical on that line since it is for a dishwasher & a disposal. Could I add the refrigerator on too or should it be on it's own separate line?

Old 11-11-01, 05:45 PM
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Many modern wiring plans have three separate circuits for the disposal, the dishwasher and the refrigerator.

I would not put the refrigerator on the same circuit as the dishwasher and disposal. If you have a full-featured dishwasher and a powerful disposal, even these two may be too much for the same 20-amp circuit. For example, the Insinkerator model 777 pulls an average of 10.2 amps, and some dishwashers pull 16 amps. On the other hand, the Insinkerator model Badger 1 pulls only 6.7 amps, and other dishwashers pull only 11 amps. A refrigerator probably pulls less than 5 amps, depending on size.

You should be investigating these kinds of details in any electrical installation you are planning. I sure hope you ran 12-gauge wire!
Old 11-11-01, 05:56 PM
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The disposal is a InSinkErator 444 and the dishwasher is a new Kenmore Elite rated #1 by consumer reports....I would say full featured. Your thoughts?
Old 11-12-01, 05:01 AM
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You have several NEC requirements that regulate what you are trying to do. The two main rules that seem to apply is that you must not overload a 20 amp circuit. There is a split decision on this subject depending on the local AHJ's ruling. A garbage disposal as John said pulls enough to limit that appliance to a dedicated 15 or 20 amp circuit. The dishwasher again as John said pulls enough to limit that appliance to a dedicated circuit. If you combine any of the three loads in a combination of two you would be overloading that circuit. The refrig pulls about half the capacity of a 15 or 20 amp circuit maybe a little more. The garbage disposal pulls about half the capacity of a 15 or 20 amp circuit. The dishwasher pulls normally well over half the capacity of a 20 amp circuit. The refrig is kind of important to need not to kick a breaker or you may experience loss of the food in that refrig. Kind of leads you to want a rather reliable power source to the refrig. As John said many believe these should be installed on their own dedicated circuit.

In new homes it is commonly wired in a design that the dishwasher is on the same circuit as the garbage disposal. This combined load design concerning the dishwasher and hte garbage disposal on the same 20 amp circuit seems to have a good track record of performance. This combining of the dishwasher and garbage disposal design is relying on the fact that the gabage disposal does not run under full load more than the time of the inrush to start the motor which the breaker will normally accept. This short running time of the garbage disposal is often ruled by the AHJs as a noncoincidental load allowing it to be combined with a second motor because the disposal has such a short load factor on a conductor.

It sure wouldn't hurt to install them each on separate circuits. It also has a good track record combining the dishwasher and garbage disposal on the same circuit using the noncoincidental load factor. I would not combine the refrigerator on with either the dishwasher or the garbage disposal.

Good Luck


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