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#65926 - 05/16/06 06:03 PM 15 amp circuit in commercial?
aldav53 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 547
Loc: Chandler, AZ USA
Has anyone seen or installed 15 amp circuits in commercial buildings? I have never seen one, only 20 amp and up.
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#65927 - 05/16/06 06:20 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
e57 Offline
Member

Registered: 05/27/03
Posts: 2837
Loc: S.F.,CA USA
Not a common pratice to say the least....
Off the top of the head, can't see why not either.
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#65928 - 05/16/06 06:40 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
BigJohn Offline
Member

Registered: 03/06/04
Posts: 352
Loc: Boston, MA
The answer I picked up somewhere was that commercial systems generally have a higher AFC than residential. During a fault, less chance the #12AWG would fail than the #14.

However, seems to me properly sized and coordinated OCPDs would do their job and protect #14 just as well as #12. Not sure 5 amps makes all that much difference, anyway.



-John

[This message has been edited by BigJohn (edited 05-16-2006).]

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#65929 - 05/16/06 07:57 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9045
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I suspect it has more to do with the fact that you have the 180va per outlet restriction in commercial (and perhaps that there is not usually much #14 on a commercial wire cart). It would make sense if this was a dedicated circuit for some low current equipment though. From a safety standpoint, oversizing a circuit (and OCP device) is not always a good idea.
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#65930 - 05/16/06 07:59 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
GEC-1 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/06/01
Posts: 32
Loc: Covington, Georgia USA
Yes! I have put 15 amp ckts. in commercial! I wired a pool house for an apartment complex, and used #14 for several of my lighting ckts. Code does allow this.

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#65931 - 05/16/06 08:26 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
DougW Offline
Member

Registered: 06/08/03
Posts: 1083
Loc: North Chicago, IL
Our local addendums specifically prohibit it.

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#65932 - 05/17/06 02:49 AM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
iwire Offline
Moderator

Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4343
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
GEC-1 what you describe is not IMO commercial.

That said the NEC certainly does not prohibit it.
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#65933 - 05/17/06 07:36 AM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
aldav53 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 547
Loc: Chandler, AZ USA
The reason I ask is someone added some walls and wired some church offices in
14-2 romex. Probably be ok, not much load there. The walls are wood construction too. I could change the breaker to a 15 amp.
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#65934 - 05/17/06 11:13 AM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
IanR Offline
Member

Registered: 12/06/04
Posts: 326
Loc: Palm Bay FL USA
I work at a very large industrial manufacturer and we have many 15A circuits. While many locales prohibit it. I think often times, it is just a matter of how the wiring is spec'd rather than an NEC issue.

[This message has been edited by IanR (edited 05-17-2006).]

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#65935 - 05/17/06 12:05 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?
Roger Offline
Member

Registered: 05/18/02
Posts: 1779
Loc: N.C.
Aldav53, I need some clarification, in your first post you ask,
 Quote:
Has anyone seen or installed 15 amp circuits in commercial buildings?
and then in your second post you say,
 Quote:
The reason I ask is someone added some walls and wired some church offices in 14-2 romex. Probably be ok, not much load there. The walls are wood construction too. I could change the breaker to a 15 amp.


What you appear to have is # 14 over fused and in violation of 240.4(D), you must change the breaker(s)

With that said, there is no problem as far as the NEC is concerned with having 15 amp circuits in commercial installations if the wiring meets or exceeds the OCPD.

Even in areas where #12 is the minimum size conductor for branch circuits or feeders it would not prohibit protecting the conductors at 15 amps or lower, and infact, certain equipment may have a Max circuit protection below 15.

Roger

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