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Old 06-27-2011, 02:35 PM   #1
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


Good afternoon,

I have a question relating to power strips and or extension cords.

I currently have a circuit that has a 20 Amp breaker, 12 AWG wiring, and 8 15-amp receptacle. Since there is more than one 15amp receptacle, I know this complies with NEC 210.21.

However, if I want to add a power strip to one of the outlets can I add a 15 Amp rated power strip? Or do I need to change the receptacle outlet to a 20 amp receptacle and purchase a 20 amp rated power strip?

If I need to replace the outlet, can I have 15 amp and 20 amp outlets on one circuit (a mix of both) or do I need to change all the outlets.

Lastly, do I need to use extension cords rated for 20 amps or can I use an extension cord rated for 15 amps.

Thank you
Brian
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Old 06-27-2011, 02:46 PM   #2
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


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Originally Posted by rudy2262 View Post
Good afternoon,

I have a question relating to power strips and or extension cords.

I currently have a circuit that has a 20 Amp breaker, 12 AWG wiring, and 8 15-amp receptacle. Since there is more than one 15amp receptacle, I know this complies with NEC 210.21.

However, if I want to add a power strip to one of the outlets can I add a 15 Amp rated power strip? Or do I need to change the receptacle outlet to a 20 amp receptacle and purchase a 20 amp rated power strip?

If I need to replace the outlet, can I have 15 amp and 20 amp outlets on one circuit (a mix of both) or do I need to change all the outlets.

Lastly, do I need to use extension cords rated for 20 amps or can I use an extension cord rated for 15 amps.

Thank you
Brian
Brian, what is your total line capacity intended? Is it a continuous load?
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Old 06-27-2011, 02:51 PM   #3
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


First is where do you reside. As for the power strip, keep in mind, that depending on how much is already on that circuit, plugging six items or so into that strip could trip the circuit. As for an extension cord, yes you could use #12 or #14 depending on how far you need to reach, but you do not use a extension cord in place of plugging into an outlet. An extension cord is only meant for temporary use only.

Instead of Power strips, make sure that you are using Surge Suppressor strips, if connecting electronics.
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Old 06-27-2011, 03:03 PM   #4
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


sorry i didnt have my location updated. i am in long island, new york.

The load would not be continuous. my intention is to use the power strip in my storage area workbench. my outlet is behind and below the workbench. I just built the bench and im not down for rewiring the outlet at the workbench height. So i was looking to get a strip for the top of the workbench for when i am working on a project where i might need mutliple tools, and dont want to move the bench to get at the outlet. none of the tools i own are 20 amp rated
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Old 06-27-2011, 03:08 PM   #5
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


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sorry i didnt have my location updated. i am in long island, new york.

The load would not be continuous. my intention is to use the power strip in my storage area workbench. my outlet is behind and below the workbench. I just built the bench and im not down for rewiring the outlet at the workbench height. So i was looking to get a strip for the top of the workbench for when i am working on a project where i might need mutliple tools, and dont want to move the bench to get at the outlet. none of the tools i own are 20 amp rated
Make sure the lighting circuit is separate from the workbench outlets in case a breaker trips at night.
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Old 06-27-2011, 03:11 PM   #6
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


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Make sure the lighting circuit is separate from the workbench outlets in case a breaker trips at night.

yes the lighting is on a separate circuit
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Old 06-27-2011, 03:16 PM   #7
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


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yes the lighting is on a separate circuit
Sounds like it is good to go.
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Old 06-27-2011, 03:29 PM   #8
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Power Strips on 20 Amp Circuit Question...


A power strip is treated like an extension cord; it is for temporary use, etc.

You can plug any kind of power strip into any receptacle that the plug fits into, you just have to be careful not to turn on so many things that the breaker down in the panel trips.

(All lights and appliances intended for ordinary 120 volt receptacles may be plugged into 20 amp circuits. You can have 15 amp receptacles on a 20 amp circuit provided that there are at least 2 receptacles on the circuit altogether, one duplex receptacle unit qualifies.)
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Last edited by AllanJ; 06-27-2011 at 03:33 PM.
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