We can agree to disagree. I don't think that future ignorance of
electrical workers is a sufficient reason to rule out multiwire branch
circuits (Edison circuits). There is a non-trivial benefit to using
them, in terms of the resources saved, copper. Plus whenever both
legs are drawing simultaneously, the voltage drop in the circuit is
less than it would be with two separate circuits.
Actually not that long ago. (sorry, but yes, I've seen them fail)...
My biggest problem is with the person who comes along 'next' and does
something *really* stupid, mainly because he doesn't realize that it
is an Edison wired circuit. I see people doing things with limited
knowledge, and the odds that it will come back and 'bite' them are
When working with electrical systems, things need to be as foolproof
as possible, there are just too many fools running around in today's
Unless codes have changed since I wired our house in 2004, "multiwire"
(edison circuits) were allowed by code (210.4A) and were quite common for
Having said that, I did install separate breakers and run individual lines
to my two kitchen circuits. I just liked the idea of keeping circuits
I generally reserve the use of 3 conductor cables to appliances that need
240V, or in situations where I want both an always on hot (the black wire),
and a switched hot (the red wire). For example, I used 12/3 in our living
room to run to all the outlets, with the red wire controlled by a light
switch. With a simple wire change at the outlet, I can configure it to be
always on, or switched by the light switch. Works great for moving the
Christmas tree around.
I also used 12/3 for some of the kitchen lights. It was a long cable run
from the switches on the end of the counter, down under the floor, up a
14' tall wall, and back down along the ceiling. I used the black wire for
the light over the sink, and the red wire for the overhead ceiling lights.
Both on the same circuit, of course. It saved over 50' of extra cable.
As long as there is only one breaker, then that is great! I like you
using the two wires to allow individual configuration of outlets from
switched to unswitched... Again, on the same breaker that's a good
No, once circuit for each. Both are high draw applicances and will not
work well together on one circuit.
I'm conservative, others will say I'm nuts, but... Seperate circuits
for dishwasher, disposal, two for outlets, one for dedicated
hood/microwave, one for lighting and misc, one for fridge, one for
stove. If the stove does not have a built-in outlet, then that 'stove'
outlet should be on one of your two outlet circuits.
Make 100% sure the main box can handle the load, that the wireing from
the meter to the box is sufficient as well. You have to assume that at
some point you will have the stove, microwave, dishwasher, and
disposal all on at one time, and then there's the coffee pot, and the
toster oven to consider. That's a big power draw there, so everything
downstream needs to be able to handle it.
It may make sense to have the local utility come out and ensure that
their meter and wires to the meter will handle the loads as well.
Of course, use a licensed electrian for the actual work.
For what it's worth -- which probably is not much -- you can't have
too many outlets in the kitchen.
I lost my home under construction to Hurricane Katrina and have since
moved to eastern Virginia where Sweet Thing and I purchased a lot and
will break ground this week. We are renting a huge house -- 3,500 sq
ft, on the market for almost $800,000 but it sits dead in the water
because of the real estate bust -- no buyers so the owner is renting
it to us.
The current owner -- my landlord -- purchased this house and
"upgraded" the kitchen. Her upgrade consisted of granite countertops,
( faux ) cherry cabinets, and stainless appliances -- and the kitchen
is damn near worthless because:
-- There are only three duplex outlets in the kitchen ( not counting
the one buried behind the fridge and the dedicated lines for the
dishwasher and stove igniters ).
-- Those three outlets are arranged along the wall behind the sink.
-- No one thought to put lights under the cabinets, so, she stuck a
couple of after-market fluorescents under each cabinet -- the cords
for these dangle down over the counter and plug into the outlets,
thereby occupying 1/3 of the outlets with the under-cabinet lights.
-- Across the kitchen from the sink is a perfect work area -- a 13-
foot long granite counter, 2 feet deep, with a prep sink, adjacent to
the fridge and pantry, lots of room for slicing, dicing, chopping,
washing, etc., -- EXCEPT -- there's not a single outlet anywhere
close to this counter -- no place to plug in blender, toaster, food
processor, electric skillet, or anything else. So -- when we cook for
a crowd, which we do 3-4 times a month, I run two heavy-duty extension
cords from the kitchen, one into the dining room, one out into the
hall, and plug them into 15-amp outlets to get power for food
processor, blender, and the like. Yes, I know this is not smart but
what else am I to do?
In the new house that I'm building, I'm putting a sub-panel for the
kitchen with 20A outlets all over the place.
And granite countertops and stainless appliances are not what they're
knocked up to be.
( By the way, the landlord "upgraded" the bathroom, too, but that's
another story -- wall tiles on the shower floor so it's as slick as
snot on a doorknob -- and that's just the beginning. )
On Mon, 4 Feb 2008 10:33:35 -0800 (PST), Old Redneck
This thread is old and most likely not perused but on the chance
you'll see it,
Ping Old Redneck..........
Do they have building codes in Virginia that they/contractors follow?
Did this lady use a contractor or some friend........anyway, what it
sounds like she did not "upgrade" her kitchen and bath, it's more like
a downgrade and is also a contributing factor in the property not
That long countertop would have a proper number of small appliance
receptacles spaced accordingly. Even a 12" counter between a a stove
and fridge would require one, so your long one is really out of
For those that don't want to hire an electrician to do the work, at
least pay one to advise you of minimum requirements. Money well spent.
I sometime install PLUGMOLD made by WIREMOLD strips if I can find an
inconspicuos spot to put it if the homeowner tells me they want more
than the norm. They have configurations for multiple circuits in the
Have fun building your house!
Knowledge is like money, the less you talk about it
the more people assume you have.
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