Kitchen circuits in old house

simancoJune 6, 2012

Hello all,

We are in an old house with less than adequate service to the kitchen.

There are basically three areas for appliances - all on separate walls.

One of these has a triple-gang box with 3 duplex receptacles fed by a new 20amp run from the main panel.

The other two areas have double-gang boxes with 2 duplex receptacles (A total of 4 duplex receptacles on two walls). This is one of the old circuits in the house and there are other receptacles on it in other rooms. It's also 20amp.

The triple-gang box is currently handling the 'fridge (6.5amp rating), the dishwasher (12amp rating) and a micro/convection combo oven (13amp rating) plus an under-cabinet light.

The two double-gang boxes handle various things at various times - toasters, stand mixers, coffee pots, the occasional iron, etc.

What I want to do is this:

Run two more 20amp circuits to the triple-gang box to essentially create a dedicated receptacle for the 'fridge, oven and dishwasher.

Run a new circuit to each of the double-gang boxes.

I have the room in the sub-panel for the breakers, but have other questions:

First, is there any problems in the "theory" of what I want to do?

The existing run to the triple-gang box, as well as the two new runs would need to be in the same panel because they need to be tied together to trip as one, correct?

When I eliminate the current wiring connections in the two double-gang boxes I'll be left with an interrupted circuit - assuming there is the appropriate volume in the boxes, can I tie together the old wiring inside those boxes?

Even if I can do the above, would it just be better to pull the wires to the basement and tie them together in their own work box?

And finally, what are the cons to using double-pole breakers? This will max out the number of spaces in the panels and anything added in the future will require another sub-panel or the use of double-pole breakers. (The main panel is a 30-space, 40 circuit and the sub can also accept the doubles, though I don't remember the rating without walking to the basement.)

Thank you very much! Any and all thoughts are appreciated.


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Ron Natalie

Make sure your countertop outlets are GFCI protected.
I don't know what you mean by "interrupted circuit" quite. If you mean that you're going to leave one receptacle on the old circuit and feed the old circuit through elsewhere, that is fine.

Hopefully the existing wiring has a real ground. If not, I'd not use the existing wiring at all. With an upgrade of this magnitude, replace it all.

I don't believe you're talking double pole breakers (i.e. those for running 240V loads) but rather the provision for certain panels to use two breakers in the space taken up by one normal (either the GE half size breakers or the Square D tandem breakers, for example). There's nothing wrong with them as long as the spaces in the panel are listed for those kind of breakers.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 7:48AM
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"Interrupted circuit" ... I meant that when I pull the duplex receptacles out of the two double-gang boxes, the circuit will be broken. Current travels through the daisy-chained receptacles.

There are some areas I can't get to, but if possible I am definitely going to get rid of the old wiring as long as I'm in the middle of the project anyway.


    Bookmark   June 6, 2012 at 2:01PM
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