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#65926 - 05/16/06 09:03 PM 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
aldav53  Offline
Member
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 545
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 09:20 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
e57  Offline
Member
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
S.F.,CA USA
Not a common pratice to say the least....
Off the top of the head, can't see why not either.


Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason

#65928 - 05/16/06 09:40 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
BigJohn  Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 391
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.

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-John

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


#65929 - 05/16/06 10:57 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
gfretwell  Offline


Member
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,122
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.


Greg Fretwell

#65930 - 05/16/06 10:59 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
GEC-1  Offline
Member
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 32
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.


#65931 - 05/16/06 11:26 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
DougW  Offline
Member
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
North Chicago, IL
Our local addendums specifically prohibit it.


#65932 - 05/17/06 05:49 AM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
iwire  Offline
Moderator
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
North Attleboro, MA USA
GEC-1 what you describe is not IMO commercial.

That said the NEC certainly does not prohibit it.


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

#65933 - 05/17/06 10:36 AM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
aldav53  Offline
Member
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 545
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.


The Golden Rule - "The man with the gold makes the rule"

#65934 - 05/17/06 02:13 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
IanR  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 328
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).]


#65935 - 05/17/06 03:05 PM Re: 15 amp circuit in commercial?  
Roger  Offline
Member
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 1,716
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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