When you are making changes to your kitchen, it is important to understand your wiring needs. If you change your kitchen up, rearrange your kitchen, or choose different appliances, you need to know how to best power them. Some appliances require a dedicated circuit. What is a dedicated circuit?
If your appliance needs a dedicated circuit, this means that your appliance needs to be the only thing plugged into the electrical outlet. A dedicated circuit has its own breaker. The major advantage of this is to ensure the safety of your home and everyone in it. It is easy to overload circuits by having too much power being demanded from them. You’ve most likely experienced this already when you turn on one more thing and then you are in darkness, and the house has become uncomfortably quiet. Then you realized you’ve tripped the breaker. By spreading out the power demanded by all of your appliances, you can reduce the possibility of a system overload or worse, an electrical fire.
When you are trying to decide which appliances would need a dedicated circuit, think of the more major appliances in your home. For example, a toaster would not need a dedicated circuit, but washers and dryers may require one. A rule of thumb would be to consider whether the appliance has its own motor or not; or is the appliance an essential part of your life for comfort or safety reasons? This would be an appliance that needs a dedicated circuit. Some other appliances are dishwashers, stoves, refrigerators, standalone freezers, water heaters, and more.
Another consideration is making sure you have a large enough circuit to handle the appliance. You certainly don’t want to continue tripping the breaker because you chose a circuit that didn’t have enough power. There are several ways to ensure you have the correct size breaker for the appliances that you have. You can check with local building codes to see if there are specific breakers that need to be installed. Additionally, you can consult an electrician to get your questions answered.
A dedicated circuit outlet could have only have space for one plug. This will ensure that only one appliance can be plugged in at a time. Another way to see which plugs might be dedicated outlets is looking at the breaker box. For appliances, dedicated circuits can be shown as 20+ amp circuits. Most breaker boxes have labels that let you know which circuits go to which areas of the house. If you have recently moved, it is good to make sure the labels are correct. Additionally, if you make changes to the electrical wiring of the house, review the box to make sure that everything is still current.