I've been looking into getting a new table saw, and since I only have
110v in my shop, I've limited my choices to contractor and hybrid
saws. I started wondering about the possibility of pulling 220v into
the shop and did some poking around in my breaker box. My circuit box
has the old style 'pushmatic' breakers and is completely full, so
adding a new 220v breaker really isn't an option. So, now I'm
wondering about tying into an existing 220v circuit.
There are two 220v circuits: a 30 amp for the air conditioner, and a
50 amp for the dryer. I don't think that using the air conditioner
circuit would be a good idea, especially in the summer. But, the dryer
circuit looks like a good possibility - assuming that we don't run the
dryer at the same time as the table saw. I was really surprised to
find that the dryer circuit was 50 amps - how much power does a dryer
So the question is, is it OK to branch off of the dryer circuit and
run it out to the shop? Would it be OK to run a table saw on a 50 amp
Update: I went and looked at the label on the back of the dryer - it
says that it should be hooked up to a maximum 30 amp circuit. Maybe I
should look into installing a small sub-panel in the garage, then run
a 20 amp circuit for the table saw, and a 30 amp circuit for the
If your main box is maxed out, that's probably a good idea, anyway.
While you're at it, you could upgrade the shop's electric a little.
Who knows when you'll want another 220 tool?
Maybe add some GFCI breakers to the new panel for the shop circuits.
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
Probably not "branch off" ... the dyer is most likely on a dedicated
circuit, depending upon the requirements of your city code/NEC, but there is
nothing to stop you from unplugging the dryer and plugging in the saw,
providing you have the right plug for the saw.
Absolutely... as long as the motor is wired for 220/240v operation.
The 50A circuit breaker is there for the sole protection of the insulation
on the wiring of the branch circuit, and not for the saw's protection. The
saw should have it's own internal thermal protection.
Ok or not according to code, I did. I tapped into the dryer circuit at the
outlet and added a 220 outlet about 18" over. I can run my cabinet saw,
stationary 15" planer or my 4.5hp Laguna band saw while the dryer is
running. I did not intend to run both at the same time but my wife entered
into the equation one day and inadvertently proved that both will run on the
Be certain to run the proper gauge wire. You can run your 220 volt saw on a
200 amp circuit if you want. A decent saw should have it's won over load
protection built in. The circuit breaker regardless of rating is strictly
intended to protect the wiring in your house.
That's not quite how it works. Where there are laws governing such things,
the buyer will have the house inspected to be sure it meets code. It might
escape notice; it might not. Or, in the event of a claim, the insurance
company might find that the non-compliant condition was causative. You have
to ask yourself if it's a good law. If it is, you should consider the wisdom
of circumventing it for whatever your reasons. If it isn't, you should work
toward having it revoked or revised so it becomes reasonable.
What buyer? Do you have people inspecting your house all the time in case
they want to buy? Seems to me, if you are going to sell you'd probably
start dismantling the shop anyway and can remove wiring easily.
As for the insurance claim, something has to go wrong first. Then it has to
Any wiring I do in my house is a vast improvement on the original, which
in some cases, leads me to believe a previous owner was trying to invoke
an insurance claim or get rid of a divorced spouse.
My work will meet or exceed code, in any case,
especially some of the goofy stuff they require in TN.
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
You don't say. We talk about honesty here, and pride ourselves in the little
things, some of them largely inconsequential. Is it a good law, to require a
building permit, licensed electricians, and followup inspection? Who gets to
decide? Everyone for themselves?
Were we talking about keeping the bushes trimmed, or were we talking about
the electrical work in the home?
I agree that requiring an inspection is a good law. The permit is
required as the fee pays for the inspection. In my area a licensed
electrician is not required for a single residence when the homeowner
does the work.
The code is written as a safety guide and tries to consider every possible
bad scenario. It is still possible to do certain things safely, but not
according to the code.
I'm in favor of building permits and plans that meet codes, but some are
kind of silly. A friend built a log cabin style house. He has a loft. If
he calls it a bedroom, it is not allowed as it is and changes must be made.
As long as he called it a seating area loft, it was OK'd and CO was issued.
Should a permit be issued and a licensed electrician install a receptacle
and have in inspected? Sure, every town will need to hire a dozen more
inspectors. There are a lot of idiots out there. Some years ago I saw a
basement of a fairly new home being finished. The owner was going to add
some receptacles and was using lamp cord to daisy chain four of them. I
pointed it out to the wife and she was going to have it changed. The
people that need inspection the most are not going to get it.
The house next door is my "new" (second) shop. I wanted to
discontinued the power from the city source and service the new shop
from my home, via subpanel. I contacted an electrician and described
my plans and asked if he would do the specialty work.
I did all the rough labor and had all other items, needed for job
completion, ready for the electrician. The electrician did all the
connections, after he inspected my labor work. Some of his work
included disconnecting breakers for a few lines of specific use &
tools from the garage & old shop and have those transferred to the new
shop service, The material supplies were maybe $400 to $500 and the
electrician charged me $45. It took him about an hour, we had a nice
chat, and I feel safe and secure with the outcome. I'm certain his
family enjoyed the several jars of home-made blackberry jelly and fig
jam I gave him, also.
From what I understand, if the wiring was the cause and you personally did
the wiring the insurance co. still has to pay up. This would not be the
case however if they found that you intentionally make the wiring
modification to burn your house down.
Similar to car insurance, if you run a red light cause a wreck and get
ticketed they still repair your car.
IIRC that is how my agent explained it to me when I told him that I added an
outlet during a reevaluation of my coverage. They are only concerned about
major wiring changes to the breaker box. They want to insure that there are
no unprotected circuits.
This myth persists. I've been over my Texas Homeowners policy and can find
nothing in it that would let the insurance company deny such a claim, except a
finding that I modified the wiring to deliberately burn the house down. Stupid
I've talked to two claims adjusters on the subject. Neither one hesitated
before saying "They'd pay".
If someone has better information, I'd love to hear it.
I will say this. First, thanks; I learned something. Second... I can't help
but point at AIG and say, yeah, against all logic and morals, I would take
the bailout, too, to mend something I did of my own
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