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Old 01-17-2010, 01:56 AM   #1
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


I only have a few things in an existing 14 guage 15 amp circuit in my garage. Eventually I want to rewire it all so that it is 12 guage, 20 amp. But for now, I am adding a receptical to the circuit. Is it ok if I make run this with 12 guage while the rest of the circuit is 14?

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Old 01-17-2010, 03:28 AM   #2
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


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I only have a few things in an existing 14 guage 15 amp circuit in my garage. Eventually I want to rewire it all so that it is 12 guage, 20 amp. But for now, I am adding a receptical to the circuit. Is it ok if I make run this with 12 guage while the rest of the circuit is 14?
Provided that the circuit breaker is 15 amp, there should be no problem...

Aaron

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Old 01-17-2010, 07:48 AM   #3
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


While it is not a good practice to mix wire sizes in a circuit, it can be done. Someone later on may see the #12 thinking they can upgrade the circuit to 20A, which they can't. As suggested above, the breaker MUST fit the smaller wire size.
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Old 01-17-2010, 08:24 AM   #4
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


Why not just leave what is there, there, and run the new stuff new???

"Re-wiring" an existing circuit is not what I would call a common practice.
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Answers based on the 2008 & 2011 NEC.
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Old 01-17-2010, 10:12 AM   #5
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


I agree with Pete, leave it & run a new #12 circuit
You can never have too many circuits or outlets in a garage
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Old 01-17-2010, 10:34 AM   #6
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


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Someone later on may see the #12 thinking they can upgrade the circuit to 20A, which they can't.
That would be my biggest concern.
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Old 01-17-2010, 01:55 PM   #7
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


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That would be my biggest concern.
If there is 14 Ga connected to the breaker why would anyone assume they could upgrade to 20 amp? If some one were to knowingly do this, they would not care about the code requirements.
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Old 01-17-2010, 02:02 PM   #8
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


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If there is 14 Ga connected to the breaker why would anyone assume they could upgrade to 20 amp? If some one were to knowingly do this, they would not care about the code requirements.
It's not a matter of knowing or caring about the code
If someone sees the yellow sheathing in the outlet box they realize its 12g wire
They know which breaker controls this...so they upgrade to a 20a breaker without verifying the wire in the panel or the rest of the circuit

Its just not best practice to mix wire
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Old 01-17-2010, 02:10 PM   #9
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


The biggest issue due the OP did not mention attached or detached garage that will really ruin his day if not addressed correct.

Really for myself I will just run new 20 amp circuit and be done with it and not get the conductor size mixed up at all.

Merci,Marc
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Old 01-17-2010, 03:41 PM   #10
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


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If there is 14 Ga connected to the breaker why would anyone assume they could upgrade to 20 amp? If some one were to knowingly do this, they would not care about the code requirements.
People do a lot of things; some get the Darwin Award, some just get on the evening news, some get away with it.

If it's not prohibited by the NEC for technical or other reasons it still may be "bad practice".

I can see the OPs point. If house wiring came with a constantly updated "Read_Me_First.txt" file, it wouldn't be so bad.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 01-17-2010 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 01-17-2010, 05:52 PM   #11
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


I agree with the other posters, it's far better to simply run a new 20 amp circuit than to simply replace part of the wiring with #12.

Aaron
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Old 01-17-2010, 07:36 PM   #12
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adding 12 gauge to 14 gauge, is it ok?


The OP has not responded to FrenchElectrician's issue as to whether this is an attached or detached garage. If attached a second circuit is fine, but a second circuit in a detached is precluded unless a MWBC (which is impossible given the OP's statements).

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