Avoid Overloaded Circuits at Christmas Part Two

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Edmonton Electrician | Avoid Overloaded Circuits at Christmas Part Two

In part one of our series, Edmonton electrician, Ryan Hauer of Hauer Power discussed what an overloaded circuit is, and why it’s so dangerous. It can lead to overloaded circuits that put your home at risk for an electrical fire. This is one of the reasons why December has the highest instances of house fires than any other time of the year.

Avoid Overloaded Circuits

In this second part, he helps us avoid overloaded circuits, by learning how to calculate amperage and wattage, and how an electricity audit can help you increase the circuits in your home, so you can have all the magic and sparkle you want to! Avoid being one of the many people who end up with house fires, as this is the time of year there’s more house fires than any other time of year, many of them caused by electrical fires from overloaded circuits.

Avoid a holiday tragedy, and contact your Edmonton electrician before the holidays. They can come in and do an electricity audit. Where are you using most of your electricity? What rooms, and outlets are most likely to have splitters or power bars plugged in? Even if you only overload the circuits at Christmas, it’s a good idea to get not only additional outlets, but additional circuits as well. Hauer Power can also add a subpanel, or upgrade your existing panel to a larger one.

Not Enough Outlets In Your Home

One of the benefits of this, says Ryan Hauer, expert Edmonton electrician, is that most homes do not come with enough electrical outlets. Home builders do this to save money, Ryan explains. But most homes can benefit with more circuits in every room, especially the living room, kitchen, and the bonus den, which is often used as a home office, a games room, or media room. They can ensure that you have not only enough outlets, but enough circuits for your every day, and especially at Christmas, when you’re even more likely to overload those circuits.

But everyone should get familiar with learning how many amps they can plug in to each circuit. And then learn how to find out how much amps each device they plug in is. By ensuring they never plug more than 15 or 20 amps in to any circuit, they can have peace of mind that their circuit breaker won’t even be needed. Here is a list of common household (and Christmas) devices, and how many amps they draw.

Once 15 amps is reached on each circuit, they should find a new circuit to plug devices in to. For any devices that exceed 15 or 20 amps, they should have their own circuit that has been specially wired by an Edmonton electrician (such as refrigerators, stoves and washers and dryers)

Edmonton Electrician | Look For Amperage and Wattage on Electrical Devices

If you can’t find the amperage on the electrical devices – any electrical devices sold in Canada should have a sticker on the cord, specifying the wattage and amperage – do not remove any of these tags! Or in many cases, the information is molded into the plastic of devices. If you only see the wattage, it’s a very simple calculation to figure out how many amps each devices draws. Edmonton electrician explains that you should divide the wattage number by 120 to find the amperage.

For example, if a string of Christmas lights uses 300 watts, the amperage draw end up being 250/120=2.5. You’ll be able to plug six of these strings of lights into one circuit without problems. Just check each string of lights, and each appliance individually, don’t assume all strings of lights draw the same amount of power. How long the string of lights is, how many bulbs, how big the bulbs are, and what kind of bulbs all will change the wattage and amperage draw.

Average Amperage of Household Devices:

Appliance Amperage
Blender 4 amps
Stove 11 amps
Dishwasher 13 amps
Computer 7 amps
Air conditioner 13 amps
Space heater 15 amps
Stereo 5 amps
Television 3 amps
Cell phone charger 1 amp
Inside Christmas lights 2 amps per string
Outside Christmas lights 3 amps per string

People can see how quickly this can add up to an overloaded circuit. Have more than five strings of lights on outside? Or more than four strings of lights and an inflatable, that’s in the danger zone. By calling the experts, you can get more circuits, peace of mind, and more importantly, have a safer Christmas for you and your family. Contact the expert Edmonton electrician, Hauer Power today to get the help you need to have a safe Christmas this year, and have a happy holidays!

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