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Old 03-20-2009, 03:40 PM   #1
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New room on one breaker


I am adding a little play area to my bacement for my kids to paly in. I dont have any open spots in my Breaker box, so I may have to have 1 or 2 things moved a bit to make room. My question is, If all my lights and outlets in the new room are going to be on one circut breaker, what amp wire should I use? I had been told to get the yellow 12 amp wire, but if everything is on one breaker I am worried it might be tripping it a lot. There is going to to have to be a space heater on in the winter and that thinge uses a fair amout of juice, a TV and some lights, as well.... Do you think 12 amp is ok?

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Old 03-20-2009, 04:53 PM   #2
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New room on one breaker


They probably meant #12 wire, that is good for 20 amps.
Are you sure your panel won't accept tandem breakers?
I would try to use an existing lighting circuit for the lights, then run a new circuit for receptacles.

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Old 03-20-2009, 05:11 PM   #3
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New room on one breaker


Yellow 12 gage would be used for a 20 amp circuit. A 1500 watt electric heater would use about 12 amps, figure 1 amp for each light, TV you would have to check the plate on the TV.
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Old 03-20-2009, 07:59 PM   #4
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New room on one breaker


I don't understand this Yellow 12 gauge talk. I thought 12 gauge is the same regardless of color.
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Old 03-20-2009, 08:06 PM   #5
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New room on one breaker


Manufacturers are color coding cable white 14 ga. yellow 12 ga. orange for 10 ga. I believe it is being done to make it easier for inspectors.
But you are correct 12 ga. is 12 ga.
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Old 03-21-2009, 02:18 AM   #6
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New room on one breaker


Quote:
Originally Posted by hayewe farm View Post
Manufacturers are color coding cable white 14 ga. yellow 12 ga..........
Thanks for the update. That's a good change. Most of the houses around here were wired with flex which were filled with every color in the rainbow including green conductors dating from the 50's.
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Old 03-21-2009, 08:17 AM   #7
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New room on one breaker


If you are planning to use a portable plug-in space heater on a regular basis in there, then I would recommend that you use a 20 Amp circuit for those outlets.

A 1500 watt heater is the max load you can apply to a 15 Amp circuit on a continuous basis, leaving no room for anything else. Using a 20 Amp circuit gives you more wiggle room, for things like TV, lamps, computer, etc.
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Old 03-21-2009, 09:40 AM   #8
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New room on one breaker


So should I stick with the Yellow 12 Amp, and a 20 amp Breaker? Or should I kick it up a notch if I am going to be useing a Space heater in there often, and maby a computer now that I think about it. I think the 15 AMp white wire comes after the yellow 12 amp.

Also this house was built in the 70's and the breaker box is set up for 200s when Electric furnises were common, There are 2 sets of 60s and 2 sets of 30s I might be able to tap into.
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Old 03-21-2009, 09:57 AM   #9
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New room on one breaker


I think you misunderstand. It is not a 15 amp and 12 amp wire. It is a 15 amp breaker which uses 14 gauge wire and a 20 amp breaker which uses 12 gauge wire. The 12 gauge wire is bigger than the 14 gauge wire. The smaller the number (gauge) the bigger the wire. Use a 20 amp breaker with a 12 gauge wire.
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Old 03-21-2009, 11:18 AM   #10
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New room on one breaker


Don't put the lighting on the same circuit as the receptacles. You don't want your kids (or you) left in the dark if the breaker trips.
The circuit you use for lighting should be another lighting circuit, not one with lots of receptacles, for the same reason as above.

20A, #12 gauge wire is fine. If you need more capacity, run two circuits, #12 wire, 20A breaker each, and another (15A, #14 wire) for the lighting.

Also, you may be required to install GFCI receptacles/breaker. If the basement is finished, you are not required, for unfinished you must have them. Honestly, especially since you will have children playing in the room, I would install GFCI receptacle. You only need one GFCI; the first one on the line; then wire the remaining receptacles to the LOAD terminals of the GFCI.

If your panel is running out of open spaces, you could consolidate other circuits. Make a map of the circuits in your entire home, then if you have one or more lightly loaded circuits, you can combine, and free up a spot for a new breaker.

Be aware that if you are building a new room, you are most likely required to pull permits for the building, and for electrical, and you will need an electrical (and maybe a building) inspection.

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Old 03-21-2009, 01:44 PM   #11
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New room on one breaker


Jsellers224, I mean no insult but with the questions you are asking and your apparent confusion I would suggest you need to hire someone who knows what he is doing. Your one statement you say " I think the 15 AMp white wire comes after the yellow 12 amp." if you use multiple sized wire on the same circuit the breaker must be sized to the smallest wire. And again the yellow cable is 12 ga. not 12 amp and 12 ga. is for a 20 amp circuit.

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