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Old 06-29-2011, 11:12 AM   #1
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


Okay, question is: Can I use a 15A simplex outlet for my garage opener on a 12/2 line on a 20A breaker? The 12/2 line will have several branches, this particular outlet will be the only outlet on it's branch but there are other outlets on other branches.

I'm really asking because I'm cheap and lazy, don't want to get a 20A simplex since I have a nice shiny new 15A one (that I bought by accident last night )

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Old 06-29-2011, 11:36 AM   #2
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


As long as this is not the only receptacle on that 20 amp circuit, then you are fine.
What code cycle are you on?
GDO receptacles now require gfci protection.

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Old 06-29-2011, 11:39 AM   #3
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


Since you are in the US, yes you can install a 15 amp receptacle on a 20 amp circuit (as long as there other receptacles on the circuit). That receptacle should be GFCI protected from the load side of a GFCI receptacle or the circuit having a GFCI circuit breaker.
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Old 06-29-2011, 11:39 AM   #4
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


Ahh, been there before.

I have been in countless homes.......to include my own that have 15A outlets on 20A circuits. I have been swapping them as I catch them just to be safe........

Based on other responses, I am guessing that you will be fine. I only am swapping mine because I am OCD..........

Last edited by Mills314; 06-29-2011 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 06-29-2011, 11:45 AM   #5
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


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Originally Posted by Mills314 View Post
The book answer is no. However, I have been in countless homes.......to include my own that have 15A outlets on 20A circuits. I have been swapping them as I catch them just to be safe........

In a nutshell, always remember that the amp capacity of an outlet needs to be equal to or larger than the circuit breaker capacity.
Totally wrong, 15 amp receptacles are most certainly allowed on 20 amp circuits. Save your money and stop replacing perfectly good and code compliant receptacles.

BTW the second part of you statement is equally wrong

" outlet needs to be equal to or larger than the circuit breaker capacity"

It is wrong to put a 20 amp receptacle on a 15 amp circuit.
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Old 06-29-2011, 11:57 AM   #6
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


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Ahh, been there before.

I have been in countless homes.......to include my own that have 15A outlets on 20A circuits. I have been swapping them as I catch them just to be safe........

Based on other responses, I am guessing that you will be fine. I only am swapping mine because I am OCD..........
A waste of time and money. The internals are the same except for the slot configuration. Even the 15 amp receptacle is rated for 20 amp feed-thru. As others have said, as long as there is more than one place to plug into a 15 amp receptacle is fine and code compliant.
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Old 06-29-2011, 12:01 PM   #7
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


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Totally wrong, 15 amp receptacles are most certainly allowed on 20 amp circuits. Save your money and stop replacing perfectly good and code compliant receptacles.

BTW the second part of you statement is equally wrong

" outlet needs to be equal to or larger than the circuit breaker capacity"

It is wrong to put a 20 amp receptacle on a 15 amp circuit.
Thats why I edited it. Caught myself having a retard moment early in the morning. However I wasn't aware of the second part! Thanks for the heads up!
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Old 06-29-2011, 02:18 PM   #8
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


see tables 210.21(b)(3) and table 210.24.nec.
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Old 06-29-2011, 02:38 PM   #9
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


Is a 15A simplex receptacle allowed on 20A circuit for use for a GDO was the question... I am a layman so I might not know the lingo, but simplex means single plug - i.e. not duplex. So that is allowed if there is any other outlets on the circuit, that's what's being said?

Beyond that, it has already been noted that if the 2008 NEC applies then GFCI is required... I'll also point out that, again - if 2008 NEC applies, TR receptacles are required as well.
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Old 06-29-2011, 03:35 PM   #10
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


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Is a 15A simplex receptacle allowed on 20A circuit for use for a GDO was the question... I am a layman so I might not know the lingo, but simplex means single plug - i.e. not duplex. So that is allowed if there is any other outlets on the circuit, that's what's being said?

Beyond that, it has already been noted that if the 2008 NEC applies then GFCI is required... I'll also point out that, again - if 2008 NEC applies, TR receptacles are required as well.
Tamper resistant receptacles are NOT required for garage door openers unless they are less than 5.5' above the floor.
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Old 06-29-2011, 03:57 PM   #11
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


Wow! Got way more responses than I thought. Thanks for the info guys. I may end up just grabbing a 20A if I have to make another run to the Depot before wiring it up, but if I don't it's nice to know I can toss the 15A in there no problem. One circuit is already protected with a GFCI breaker and the other will have it's first outlet be my new outside GFCI outlet so both lines will be protected.

BTW, why the heck are 20A outlets so expensive? I spent $60 just on outlets at Home Depot, and I got the cheapest ones they had! Lowes screwed me over good on wire too, $60+ for 50' of 12/3 when 12/2 was only $35! (needed some of both), double the price for only one more conductor? Bleh!
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Old 06-29-2011, 04:01 PM   #12
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


because they're unnecessary in most cases
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Old 06-29-2011, 04:09 PM   #13
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


210.21(a)(b)(B)receptacles.
(1)single recps installed on an indivudal branch ckt shall have an ampere rating not less than that of the branch ckt.
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Old 06-29-2011, 04:32 PM   #14
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


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210.21(a)(b)(B)receptacles.
(1)single recps installed on an indivudal branch ckt shall have an ampere rating not less than that of the branch ckt.
It isn't an individual branch circuit.
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Old 06-29-2011, 04:54 PM   #15
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15A Receptacle on 20A line


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It isn't an individual branch circuit.
just some info for all.

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