Home Appliance Smarts: Which Ones Need to be on a Dedicated Circuit?
Today, access to electricity is a must. If you are like most people, the majority of your life is dependent on electricity powered devices. Your television, refrigerator, air conditioner – and the list goes on and on – all rely on electricity.
While many of these appliances can be wired to operate on the same circuit, there are others that need to be put on a dedicated circuit. Are you wondering which ones require this? If so, keep reading.
What is a Dedicated Circuit?
A dedicated circuit is one that’s completely devoted to powering a single appliance or an electrical application. It has one purpose, and its own place on the breaker box where it remains divorced from any interaction with other outlets or circuits in your home. This is mainly a functionality measure; however, it is also a safety one.
It’s important to use a dedicated circuit for any item that requires a large amount of power on a regular basis (think AC unit, refrigerator, etc.) or things that pull a sudden and large draw (for example, microwaves, hair dryers, etc.).
Why are Dedicated Circuits Necessary?
It may seem somewhat tedious and frustrating to go through all this effort to have a dedicated circuit for every one of these items; however, it’s extremely important. Making sure that certain appliances are on a dedicated circuit can prevent several home risks, helping to keep you and your family safe. When you use dedicated circuits, you can avoid a number of issues, including:
- Risks of electrical shock
- Flickering lights
- Appliance damage
- Potential home fires
- Breaker trips
By preventing these issues, you can keep your home safe and avoid serious electrical problems.
Appliances to Hook to a Dedicated Circuit
A general rule of thumb you can follow is that anything that is fixed (it means it is installed and not moved) should be on a dedicated circuit. Some of the items to include are:
- Large televisions
- Standing freezers and refrigerators
- Hot water heaters
- Ovens, ranges, and stoves
- Cooling and heating systems
This provides you with a good baseline to use; however, there are several smaller, mobile items that you need to have on dedicated circuits, too. These include:
- Portable space heaters
- Hair dryers
- Window air conditioners
Due to this need for dedicated outlets for the smaller items, it may be necessary that a “general use” dedicated circuit is installed in several rooms of your home. For example, if you install a general use outlet in your bathroom, you can safely use a hair driver as needed and one in the living room lets you plug in the space heater in the winter.
When it comes to electricity in your home, there are more than a few situations where a dedicated circuit will be beneficial. Be sure to keep the information here in mind to ensure you have dedicated circuits installed where they are needed. If you need help with this, be sure to reach out to the pros.