12 gauge on 15 AMP breaker ?


Old 12-28-01, 06:04 PM
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Question 12 gauge on 15 AMP breaker ?

Help - Remodeling, new Electrical circuit.

I have excess 12/2 Gauge BX cable from previous renovations, I understand 14 guage cable is the proper size for a 15 AMP Circuit breaker.

Is it safe to use 12/2 gauge cable on a 15 AMP breaker with outlets and lighting rating of 15 amps max, Heavier guage cable on smaller amp breaker is this safe ??

Is this within the code on Long Island, NY ?

Can anyone pls. advise.

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Old 12-28-01, 11:09 PM
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Don't know about LI, NY code, but when I built my home, I had 12/2wg put on ALL circuits, including the 15 amp breakers.
It is perfectly safe to use larger wire (12/2 can be used on 15 or 20 amp), but not a larger breaker on specific size wire.
14/2 - 15 amp max
12/2 - 20 amp max
Old 12-29-01, 05:11 AM
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Thanks for your reply.

I had thought so, folks down at the local home depot made me think other wise. I know they want to only recommend the proper usage.

Old 12-29-01, 08:23 AM
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Let me "bang" Home Depot Lowe's and all others in one shot.
They are well intentioned however they DO NOT know the code. Even the advice here should be double checked. Plumbing you do wrong it leaks. Electric you do wrong "could" kill someone or burn your house down.
Not insulting you, you are asking a second opinion.
Old 12-29-01, 09:09 AM
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Jxofaltrds, I agree so much with what you said. So many times i have heard salesmen quoted as to what should be done and what meets Code. In my opinion a person should listen to whatever anyone has to say out a say respect to that well intended person. However I can not stress any more strongly that when you take advise about proper electrical wiring make sure that advice is coming from a person that is qualified to give you that advice. ASK FOR CREDENTIAL, PROOF OF KNOWLEDGE SUCH AS TESTING. If that person can not produce proof that he has received and passed an approved testing agencies test or licensing requirements then you should be very reluctant to feel safe in what that person is saying. He may know what he is talking about, then again he may just think he knows what he is talking about. He or she may not know what he or she doesn't know. Everyone should be very careful in taking advice. The more sources you talk to that agree with what is being advised and the more credentials they carry to prove they know what they are talking about the safer you should be.

Just look back in the archives of this and other forums. You can see some very highly ranked people in the electrical trade that sometimes can not agree what meets the minimum safety standards. How should we believe a person giving advice that has no proof of knowledge such as licensing or documented testing?

Jxofaltrds, you are so right in your warning statement.

Be safe

Old 12-29-01, 10:54 AM
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Normally, I don't interfere when a Home Depot employee is giving out bone-head advice. But the other day, the employee in the electrical aisle was explaining that the customer must make sure that the two breakers on a shared-neutral circuit are attached to the same power phase. At this point, I felt compelled to step in before the customer's house burned down.

Sometimes you get great advice at Home Depot. And sometimes their advice will kill you! Never accept a single source of electrical advice. That's one of the reasons this forum works so well -- we all double-check each other. It's also the reason I don't answer questions by email -- I want my answers exposed to the scrutiny of the other experts here. Everybody goofs from time to time.
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