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Old 01-07-2010, 01:53 PM   #1
nepawrx
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Question Question for the Electrically Inclined or Electricians/Electrical Engineers

I am currently in the middle of a very extensive basement finishing project. I have all of the wiring complete except for 3 outlets in the wetbar. Currently, I have a GFCI outlet as the first outlet in a series of 10, 15 Amp outlets. It works perfectly. I am now going to add a junction box before the existing 10 outlets and branch off for the 3 outlets in the wetbar. Now I will essentially have 2 "first" outlets in the series. The first outlet in the 3 wetbar outlets is within a foot of the sink. I was going to put another GFCI outlet in this location. My question is, do I need it? Will those 3 outlets be protected by the other GFCI? I know you shouldn't have 2 GFCIs in a series, but is it OK to have them on the same circuit?

All of these electrical outlets are on a dedicated 20 Amp circuit. Here is a diagram to show you what I am talking about. The white box labeled "GFCI" is my existing GFCI outlet and the red box is where I am questioning the need:

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Old 01-07-2010, 01:57 PM   #2
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I believe you'd need the GFCI on that one that you're asking about.

But I'm not electronically nor electrically inclined.
I DO have magnetic personality. Thus my attraction to this thread I suppose.


Carry on.
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Old 01-07-2010, 01:57 PM   #3
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14 15 amp outlets on a single 20 amp breaker?

I'm no electrician, but that seems like it could cause some trouble at some point.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VpointVick View Post
14 15 amp outlets on a single 20 amp breaker?

I'm no electrician, but that seems like it could cause some trouble at some point.
It's actually 13 (should say x7 more outlets). I consulted a book about wiring and 13 outlets is acceptable. Of course, there will never be stuff plugged into all 13 outlets.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:06 PM   #5
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Well I'm sure you put all this on your electrical diagram when you got your permit and it was okayed by the city so you should be good to go...
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:08 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorFartman View Post
Well I'm sure you put all this on your electrical diagram when you got your permit and it was okayed by the city so you should be good to go...
You are absolutely right.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:10 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nepawrx View Post
It's actually 13 (should say x7 more outlets). I consulted a book about wiring and 13 outlets is acceptable. Of course, there will never be stuff plugged into all 13 outlets.
With your fridge being plugged into one of those outlets though, startup draw is going to be half the capacity all by itself.

:shrug:

I probably would've run another circuit, just to be safe.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VpointVick View Post
With your fridge being plugged into one of those outlets though, startup draw is going to be half the capacity all by itself.

:shrug:

I probably would've run another circuit, just to be safe.
It'a only an under-counter minifridge. However, I have no idea if that makes a difference. Plus, I'm running out of space in my box (that's what she said). I already have 5 separate circuits in my basement.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VpointVick View Post
I probably would've run another circuit, just to be safe.
This, and use a GFI breaker. You don't want to move the fridge to test the GFI.

If you do it as drawn, the first one needs to be GFI with the rest of the circuits tapped off the load side of the receptacle. That way, again, you don't have to move the fridge.


NEC does not limit the number of receptacles on a circuit in a residence, only proving two methods of calculating the minimum number of circuits required and that all general use receptacles are equally proportioned on those circuits.

Last edited by LastResort; 01-07-2010 at 02:28 PM.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:23 PM   #10
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You could replace the current breaker with a GFCI breaker. They're pricey but would cover the entire circuit.

And +1 for dedicated circuit for the fridge.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:25 PM   #11
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depending on how you wire (and where you place) the gfci, it protects the whole circuit, no? So you don't have any reason to make it the inaccessible one behind the fridge....
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:29 PM   #12
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Your wet bar outlets will not be protected by the existing GFCI but...

The fridge is going to trip the GFCI (labeled in red) and since you need a GFCI for the receptacles near the water source I would run an additional circuit for the fridge.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:44 PM   #13
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I still could run a dedicated circuit for the 3 outlets in the wetbar. It really isn't much more work. Maybe I will do that.
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Old 01-07-2010, 02:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt K View Post
depending on how you wire (and where you place) the gfci, it protects the whole circuit, no? So you don't have any reason to make it the inaccessible one behind the fridge....
The 2nd GFCI (the red one) would be on top of the bar on the backsplash next to the sink. I would be very accessible.
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Old 01-07-2010, 03:18 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nepawrx View Post
I still could run a dedicated circuit for the 3 outlets in the wetbar. It really isn't much more work. Maybe I will do that.
I would do that.

Takes care of the problem that you were asking about, and gets the fridge off of that long run of outlets.
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Old 01-08-2010, 08:55 AM   #16
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Any outlet within 6' any direction of a sink or wet bar usually must be GFCI protected.
Codes will vary by state & local municipality.

I look at a bar area as a place for prepping food... Pizza oven + blender + Froman Grill + Fridge = bad.

14awg = 15amp breaker
12awg = 20 amp

Personally depending on the intended use I'd lean towards a 20amp cir just for the 3 plugs above the counter & leave the fridge & every thing else on the existing 15amp cir.

When in doubt hire it out...
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:32 AM   #17
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I am not an electrician, nor do I do homes... but I do design power & control systems for big ole chemical plants.

This could be overkill, but I would have run a 30A (or a 20A & 15A) feed to the J-Box & put in 3 10A (or 2 10's & a 15) breakers, one for the fridge, one for all GFCI's & one for regular outlets and or lights.
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:35 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LastResort View Post
This, and use a GFI breaker. You don't want to move the fridge to test the GFI.

If you do it as drawn, the first one needs to be GFI with the rest of the circuits tapped off the load side of the receptacle. That way, again, you don't have to move the fridge.


NEC does not limit the number of receptacles on a circuit in a residence, only proving two methods of calculating the minimum number of circuits required and that all general use receptacles are equally proportioned on those circuits.

^^^^ correct answer(s).
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:41 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BakedCookies View Post
The fridge is going to trip the GFCI (labeled in red)


I've run fridges on GFCI circuits in my garage for years.
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:54 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fliz View Post


I've run fridges on GFCI circuits in my garage for years.
my garage fridge trips the GFCI all the time & it's just a little 1/2 sized jobber...

I guess the point is- the guy us dropping $$ for a basement upgrade, for a few extra bucks in electrial stuff he can do it right & not have to worry about overloading a circuit.
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Old 01-08-2010, 11:24 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hedwagon View Post
my garage fridge trips the GFCI all the time & it's just a little 1/2 sized jobber...

I guess the point is- the guy us dropping $$ for a basement upgrade, for a few extra bucks in electrial stuff he can do it right & not have to worry about overloading a circuit.
I guess I did have that problem until I ran a separate circuit for the fridge, although usually only when I had a space heater plugged in and the fridge started.
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Old 01-08-2010, 11:39 AM   #22
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How accessible is your current wiring?

Looks like you'd be much better off running some secondary feeds to a dedicated sub-panel, rather than one line to a junction box.
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Old 01-08-2010, 11:43 AM   #23
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IIRC a GFCI outlet is only good for itself and one more outlet after it on the same circut run.

<--- Father's an electrician, but I don't know much more than doing standard outlet runs.

Ie: I could be completely wrong and way off.
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Old 01-08-2010, 12:06 PM   #24
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Thanks for all the tips. I've decided I'm going to wire it the way I have diagramed. One 20 Amp circuit for all 13 outlets and 2 GFCIs. If I overload the circuit or continually trip the GFCIs, I will add a new circuit. That would only cost me a few bucks and about 15 minutes of my time. The junction box will be very accessible (as it should be) in the open ceiling of the unfinished portion of my basement and it is only about 8' from the panel. My father, who is not an electrician but is basically the foreman of my basement project, assures me that I should not have a problem. He knows how to do everything, so I trust him.
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Old 01-08-2010, 01:51 PM   #25
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I feel I should clarify something for those that may read this thread later. The 2008 NEC allows the use of a dedicated, non GFI circuit for a refrigerator in the kitchen only. For wet bars; any receptacle within 6ft from the wet bar sink outside edge must be GFCI protected, no exceptions.
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