# How To Determine Correct Circuit Breaker Size

When it comes to wiring your home or workplace, one of the most important factors to consider is the size of circuit breakers. A circuit breaker is a device that is designed to protect appliances and circuits from short-circuiting or overloading. If too much current passes through the breaker, it will trip, cutting off power to the device or circuit in question. It is essential to determine the correct size of circuit breaker for each circuit in order to ensure safety and optimal performance. The first step in determining the correct size circuit breaker is to calculate the wattage requirements of the circuit. This can be done by adding up the wattages of all the appliances, lights, and other devices connected to the circuit. Once you have the total wattage, divide by 120 to get the amperage needed to power the circuit. For example, if the total wattage was 1800 watts, then the amperage needed would be 15 amps (1800 watts / 120 volts = 15 amps). Once you have the amperage, you can look at the rating of the circuit breaker. In the United States, typical household circuit breakers come in 15 amp, 20 amp, and 30 amp sizes. For the example above, the correct size would be a 15 amp circuit breaker. However, if you are installing an appliance that draws more than 15 amps, such as an electric stove or clothes dryer, you'll need to use a 20 amp or 30 amp circuit breaker. It is also important to note that the size of the circuit breaker should be based on the wire size used in the circuit. The size of the wire determines how much current it can safely handle, and thus must match the size of the breaker. If the breaker size is larger than the wire can handle, it can cause overheating and possibly a fire. To determine the correct wire size, you'll need to refer to the National Electrical Code (NEC). Selecting the right size circuit breaker can seem daunting, but with the right information and calculations, it can be done safely. Make sure to double check your work and always consult a licensed professional if you are unsure. Keeping your home or workplace safe from electrical hazards starts with knowing the appropriate size of circuit breaker for your circuits.

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