Dedicated Electrical Circuits and Required Appliances, Part 1

Within a given home or commercial building, electrical circuits are the channels that support various electrical needs and appliances throughout the structure. Many circuits handle multiple such appliances or needs, but others will handle only a single appliance – these are known as dedicated circuits.

At My Buddy the Electrician, we’re happy to provide both commercial and residential electrician services, including a full range of services and expertise regarding circuits in your building. What kinds of appliances generally require their own dedicated circuits within a building, and what kinds of protection do dedicated circuits provide? This two-part blog will go over all these details plus how to identify the dedicated circuits in your home or building.

dedicated electrical circuits appliances

Dedicated Circuit Basics

As we noted above, a dedicated circuit is one that’s devoted entirely to providing power to a single appliance or electrical application within a structure. The circuit is never asked to divert power to any other source for any other reason.

Within your breaker box, which houses all your circuit connections, dedicated circuits have their own individual spot. For both safety and practical reasons, they will be separated from interacting with other circuits. Generally speaking, dedicated circuits are used for larger power needs and those that run consistently, plus those that pull a sudden, heavy draw of electricity.

What Dedicated Circuits Protect Against

For numerous appliances and home or commercial situations, dedicated circuits are part of standard NEC (National Electrical Code) requirements. They protect against all the following risks taking place within high-power appliances or applications:

Appliances that Require Dedicated Circuits

Like we discussed earlier, larger or higher-power applications are generally those that require their own dedicated circuit. This tends to include major “fixed” items that are installed in a single place and do not move around while drawing major power, including:

  • Refrigerators and freezers
  • Ovens, stoves and ranges
  • Various HVAC components or systems
  • Hot water heaters
  • Sump pump systems
  • High-power televisions
  • Microwaves

Now, this isn’t an exhaustive list of appliances or applications that might require a dedicated circuit. There are also many smaller items that should generally be used on a dedicated circuit due to the amounts of power they draw during use, such as space heaters, hair dryers, window air conditioners, toasters and numerous others.

If you regularly use these items, our team of electricians might recommend at least one “general use” dedicated circuit be installed in most rooms of the home or building, particularly those where these items are used often. This allows for there to be no risk of improper circuit usage when utilizing these appliances.

For more on dedicated circuits, or to learn about any of our electrical repair or installation services, speak to the staff at My Buddy the Electrician today.