I would like to move my microwave from the kitchen countertop into a
spacious cabinet to free up the counter. There is currently a 14ga
wire running to that cabinet from a wall switch (prior owner intended
to install accent lighting in glass-fronted portion of cabinet. Is it
safe to run a microwave on a circuit/outlet controlled by a wall
switch? How do I tell if the switch is 'rated' for a certain power
draw? I would obviously install a GFI outlet.
Switches have ratings stamped on them. Take it out and look. After you look,
put the switch on the kitchen table, and join the wires in the outlet
together so they're not switched any more. Go buy a nice blank plate to
cover the box. Have a beer.
I have my microwave on a wall switch. I turn it off when it is not in use
and this saves electricity. I also have a power strip for my TV/Stereo and I
also turn this off when not in use which saves electricity.
So far as rating, 14 ga. wire is for a 15 amp circuit. Get a 15amp switch.
Should say 15 amp or 15 A on the switch. (I have 12 ga. wire, a 20 amp
outlet, and I use a 20 amp rated switch.)
Also check local electrical codes. I don't know if they would require a
separate 20 amp outlet for a microwave or whatever. If you are having your
work inspected, run it by your local electrical inspector before doing any
work. Could save you time and money...
Microwaves are often located in kitchens which have coffee makers and
toasters and such which use up a large fraction of 15 amperes. If
somebody tries to use a microwave AND a heating appliance on the same
circuit at the same time, I think a blown 15 ampere fuse is quite likely.
Walls switches are rated for 15A. That's more than adequate for a
microwave. Microwaves aren't motors, so you don't need to get motor-rated
It'll be an annoyance to lose all the settings on the microwave whenever
anybody hits the switch. Remove it and jumper the wires, covering
the hole with a blank plate if you're worried.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It\'s not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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