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Old 03-09-2008, 09:58 PM   #1
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


Hey everyone.

I am installing a central vac unit in my utility room next week and want to know if it is mandatory to install a new circuit for it. Currently it appears I can plug it into the one receptacle near it, but that receptacle currently has the water heater (gas) plugged into the top, and has a brand new energy star freezer (not huge but moderate size) plugged into the bottom. I was thinking of getting a 3-prong splitter to split from the freezer or the water heater and running the central vac from that. However, I noted in the manual for the central vac that it recommends minimum 15A, better to have a 20A breaker. Would I be OK with these three things on the same circuit or is that too much and asking for many tripped breakers?

Should I get a dedicated line put in for this?

Thanks.

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Old 03-10-2008, 09:03 PM   #2
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


Check the nameplate ratings on the appliances. They should be listed in watts or amps. The total of the appliances should be less than 12 amps or 1450 watts (for a 15 A circuit) and 16 amps or 1920 watts (for a 20 A circuit.)

I think a lot of it depends on how powerful the vacuum is. I haven't worked with them before so I have no idea of their range. Good luck!

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Old 03-10-2008, 09:13 PM   #3
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


Hi Goose, thanks for the reply.

The c-vac calls for a 15A circuit (20A recommended), so I'm guessing it wouldn't be wise (or possible w/o tripping breakers) to have it on there with the freezer and hot water tank. Otherwise they wouldn't likely call for a 20A recommendation, right? Probably means its pushing the limits of a 15A on a good day, before the motor works harder to suck something like a paper towel or whatever into it...

I actually got an email response from the previous owner of the house and he said his intention, before time got in the way, was to re-wire that room to include another circuit for the central vac, but in the meantime he was running it off of an extension cord to the washing machine plug, so they'd know immediately if they tripped it before any food spoiled or water got cold.

I'll look into finishing that work he was intending to start, this spring. Probably just will run a new circuit for the central vac unit, as the current circuit with the freezer and hot water tank hasn't tripped yet to date and probably won't.
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:15 PM   #4
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


IF the appliance calls for a dedicated circuit than you have no choice...
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:18 PM   #5
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


Well, that sounds alright. Without knowing the actual load of the vac, it's hard to say one way or another. The laundry circuit (depending on the age of the home) should be a dedicated circuit. So running the freezer on it was a smart move, there is no other loads but the W/D on it.
If the factory says 20A would be better, who are they to be denied? When you tackle this, just put in a 20 A circuit and sleep better knowing you did it right the first time.
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:25 PM   #6
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


Sorry, I might have miscommunicated.

- The c-vac doesn't say either 15A or 20A DEDICATED is required- it just states to put it on one of the two (20A preferred).

As far as I know, the utility room is set up with these items on these circuits:
- washer circuit - washer
- dryer circuit - dryer
- furnace circuit - furnace (gas), freezer (energy-star), hot water tank (gas)
- other circuit - light (2x fluorescent tubes), extra plugin nowhere in the area of anything useful (used for my cordless drill battery charger), and probably something I'm forgetting.

I think the safest bet is to assume the status-quo is OK and just run a dedicated circuit for the c-vac. (?)
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:35 PM   #7
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


Quote:
Originally Posted by curls00 View Post
Sorry, I might have miscommunicated.

- The c-vac doesn't say either 15A or 20A DEDICATED is required- it just states to put it on one of the two (20A preferred).

As far as I know, the utility room is set up with these items on these circuits:
- washer circuit - washer
- dryer circuit - dryer
- furnace circuit - furnace (gas), freezer (energy-star), hot water tank (gas)
- other circuit - light (2x fluorescent tubes), extra plugin nowhere in the area of anything useful (used for my cordless drill battery charger), and probably something I'm forgetting.

I think the safest bet is to assume the status-quo is OK and just run a dedicated circuit for the c-vac. (?)
IMO, I would, but its not required by code... and I misread your post about the dedicated part...sorry
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:57 PM   #8
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Central vac, freezer, and gas water heater on same circuit?


I agree with chris.

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