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21
Mar

How many things can go on one circuit?

Here is a simple guide to professional circuit loading in a residential application. Please find our breakdown room by room below of how many things can go on one circuit.

How many things can go on one circuit in the Kitchen?

  1. There must be an outlet on each separate counter area 300mm or larger
  2. Non-adjacent outlets can be on one circuit. (please note this is not recommended if there are lots of heavy draw appliances in use in your kitchen)
  3. No spot on the counter can be further than 1m from an outlet
  4. Outlets within 1.5 meters of a sink must be GFCI protected. Adjacent outlets can be on the same GFCI.  (again, this is not recommended if there are lots heavy draw appliances in use in your kitchen)
  5. A Microwave must be on one circuit.
  6. A Dishwasher must have a separate circuit.
  7. Fridge(s) must have a separate circuit.
  8. Overhead and cabinet lighting can be loaded to 12 fixtures on one circuit. Note:  Switches do not count as fixtures.
  9. Built in ovens and cook-tops require separate circuiting and breakers.
  10. Warming/cooling drawers require special separate wiring.

General living spaces:

How many things can go on one circuit

The Shock Doctors testing an outlet to make sure it’s grounded

  1. Outlets can be loaded to 12 devices per one circuit. (the recommended load is 8-10 outlets to allow for future expansion).  These outlets must be protected by an AFCI breaker.
  2. Overhead lighting can be loaded to 12 fixtures per circuit. Switches do not count as fixtures.  Lighting does not have to be AFCI protected.

In the Bedrooms:

  1. Outlets can be loaded to 12 devices per one circuit. (the recommended load is 8-10 outlets to allow for future expansion).  These outlets must be protected by an AFCI breaker.
  2. Overhead lighting can be loaded to 12 fixtures per circuit. Switches do not count as fixtures.  Lighting does not have to be AFCI protected.

In the Bathrooms:

  1. Although not Code required, bathroom GFCI(s) should be on separate circuits. This eliminates tripping from high draw hair dryers and spa equipment.
  2. Ceiling exhaust fans, overhead lighting and cabinet lighting can be on with other lighting up to a maximum of 12 fixtures.
  3. Heat lamps and combo heat lamps/exhaust fans should be on separate circuits.
  4. Lights & exhaust fans mounted in showers and tub enclosures must be rated for that location and GFCI protected.

In the Garage:

  1. There must be one outlet for each bay in the garage.
  2. Central vacuum should be one circuit.
  3. Although not Code required, the garage door opener(s) should be on a separate circuit so adding them to future backup generator systems is an easy modification.
  4. Ceiling exhaust fans, overhead lighting and cabinet lighting can be on with other lighting up to a maximum of 12 fixtures on one circuit.

In your Utility Room:

  1. Sump/sewage pumps must be each on a dedicated circuit.
  2. Furnaces must be on a separate circuit. If furnace incorporates a condensate pump they can both be on the same circuit.
  3. Window air conditioners should each be on a dedicated circuit.
  4. It is best practice to put the electrical outlet for a gas hot water tank on a separate circuit.
  5. It is best practice to put freezers on a separate circuit.
  6. Outlets supplying workshop tools should be individually sized to match anticipated draws of tools. You can’t go wrong wiring for 20 amp outlets every 1 m on a workbench.
  7. Ceiling exhaust fans, overhead lighting and cabinet lighting can be on with other lighting up to a maximum of 12 fixtures on one circuit.

In the Laundry room:

  1. Washing machine requires a dedicated circuit.
  2. Dryer requires a dedicated circuit (gas or electric models)
  3. Any general utility outlets in the laundry can be on the same circuit (12 max). Must ensure any outlets within 1.5m of the laundry sink or other water source are GFCI protected.
  4. Ceiling exhaust fans, overhead lighting and cabinet lighting can be on with other lighting up to a maximum of 12 fixtures.

Outside your house – how many things can go on one circuit?

  1. There must be an outdoor outlet with an “in-use” rated weatherproof cover at both the front and rear of the house. The outlets must be GFCI protected and on separate circuits.

In order to facilitate the load and circuits required to professionally distribute electricity through your home it is recommended to always have a 200 amp breaker panel installed.  A Shock Doctor 200 amp panel can carry up to 120 circuits.  If on a strict budget a 100 amp panel will do, but only up to 2,000 square feet of building (example: 3 bedroom; one bath homes with basements are an average of 2,000 square feet).  A Shock Doctor 100 amp panel can carry up to 64 circuits.

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