Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Electrical

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-01-2011, 06:23 PM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Hi All,
I was going to add an outlet to my home office by tapping into a nearby outlet and extending the circuit. But when I traced the circuit I found that it is on a 50 amp breaker.... along with all of the lights and outlets in 4 adjoining rooms! This is an old house, and I'm pretty sure this was done during the original construction. There is aluminum wiring for much of it, but as additions were done, they were done in copper wire. When we went to the home improvement store to get the romex for adding an outlet, the person there said that "you can't do that" as the amperage of the circuit is too high. What can we do?
Thanks,
Sunfish

sunfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-01-2011, 06:28 PM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 729
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Call an electrician.

Master of Cold is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Master of Cold For This Useful Post:
Code05 (10-01-2011), Jim Port (10-02-2011), Speedy Petey (10-02-2011)
Old 10-01-2011, 06:42 PM   #3
Semi-Pro Electro-Geek
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 2,557
Rewards Points: 2,010
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Your house's wiring is all screwed up. It sounds like you may need essentially a complete re-wire. This installation is not safe.
mpoulton is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to mpoulton For This Useful Post:
Code05 (10-01-2011), oh'mike (10-01-2011)
Old 10-01-2011, 07:48 PM   #4
Floor Sweeper
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Central MN
Posts: 359
Rewards Points: 250
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Are you sure the 50 A breaker doesn't feed a subpanel someplace?

What size wire do you have at the breaker?
junkcollector is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to junkcollector For This Useful Post:
Code05 (10-02-2011), SD515 (10-01-2011), Speedy Petey (10-02-2011)
Old 10-01-2011, 08:41 PM   #5
Licensed electrician
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Maryland
Posts: 7,695
Rewards Points: 2,188
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


General purpose circuits for lighting and receptacles are limited to 15 or 20 amps. Fifty amp circuits are typically limited to stoves.
__________________
Answers based on the National Electrical Code. Local amendments may apply. Check with your local building officials.
Jim Port is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-01-2011, 10:05 PM   #6
Electrical Contractor
 
kbsparky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Delmarva
Posts: 3,368
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Betcha you have an old fuse box somewhere (Did you look in the attic?) that was the original service for your house. That 50 Amp circuit is the sub-feed for that box.
__________________
-KB

Life is uncertain -- eat dessert first!!
kbsparky is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to kbsparky For This Useful Post:
Code05 (10-02-2011), junkcollector (10-02-2011), SD515 (10-01-2011)
Old 10-02-2011, 04:17 PM   #7
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Thanks to Junkcollector for the first reasonable reply, and kbsparky too! Yes, I found a subpanel. The circuit is actually on a 10 amp breaker so will be no problem. While this should have been a no-brainer, I was stressed and got caught up in the over-reactions. Thanks for the simple push I needed to get back on track
sunfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-02-2011, 04:26 PM   #8
Member
 
Code05's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Easton MD
Posts: 1,841
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Quote:
Originally Posted by sunfish View Post
Thanks to Junkcollector for the first reasonable reply, and kbsparky too! Yes, I found a subpanel. The circuit is actually on a 10 amp breaker so will be no problem. While this should have been a no-brainer, I was stressed and got caught up in the over-reactions. Thanks for the simple push I needed to get back on track
Sunfish, peoples reactions are based on the info provided. Reread your OP and you can see what initial conclusions can be drawn.

Those of us that do this for a living have seen some pretty wild stuff.
Code05 is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Code05 For This Useful Post:
Jim Port (10-03-2011), mpoulton (10-02-2011), SD515 (10-02-2011), Speedy Petey (10-02-2011)
Old 10-03-2011, 01:14 AM   #9
Electrical Contractor
 
kbsparky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Delmarva
Posts: 3,368
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


In the US, 10 Amp breakers are quite unusual. While they do exist, I doubt your house has one.

However, the number "'10" is found on many breakers as part of an AIC rating, and it's usually an abbreviated 10,000 Amps Interrupting Capacity. This is a fault-current rating that the breaker is capable of safely interrupting during a catastrophic short circuit condition, and has nothing to do with the normal overcurrent protection rating of the breaker.

Look again on the breaker, and see if a 15 or 20 is stamped on the handle for its true circuit capacity.
__________________
-KB

Life is uncertain -- eat dessert first!!
kbsparky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2011, 10:44 PM   #10
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Outlets on 50Amp Breaker


Apologies for the use of "reasonable" in my description of the replies... "helpful in solving the problem" would have been better as that is what made me track down the sub-panel. I'm sure you have all seen some unbelievable messes in the electrical world I did not mean any disrespect. I'll find the true rating and make sure I've got the right size romex before tackling this little project.
Thanks again for the help folks!

sunfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How many lights and outlets on one breaker Jaosnh Electrical 7 04-10-2011 09:55 AM
GFCI Breaker Tripping Spa Light eaposition Electrical 21 09-08-2010 09:57 PM
Breaker Tripping Jeridmar6 Electrical 15 07-10-2010 08:20 PM
3 outlets and a light off a new breaker racebum Electrical 4 06-29-2010 08:42 AM
Tandem Breaker and Circuit(s) whowadat Electrical 1 01-09-2009 04:13 AM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.