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Old 09-21-2008, 10:18 PM   #1
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Standard gauge for household electrical wire


What is the standard gauge for household electrical wire? I was taking a look at one of my interior light boxes and the wire looks like around 14 gauge and I believe 12 gauge is the standard, correct?

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Old 09-21-2008, 10:33 PM   #2
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Standard gauge for household electrical wire


14 gauge is used for 15 amp circuits. #12 is used for 20 amps. This applies for your receptacles and lighting.

Certain circuits for motors and compressors will not follow this rule.

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Old 09-21-2008, 11:42 PM   #3
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Standard gauge for household electrical wire


Bear in mind that nothing is "standard", except for the wire sizing requirements. What I mean is that the wire should always be sized for the circuit, whether it is a 15 amp circuit or a 60 amp circuit.

Check the breaker that serves the circuit in question. As Jim said, 14 gauge is good for 15 amps and 12 gauge is good for 20 amps.
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