Electrical Codes for Lights and Outlets
Does either a national or state electrical code require that smallest allowable gauge wire is 12-gauge…
Do You Need Electrical Help?
Guide to Residential Electrical Wiring
Electrical Code Requirements for Lights and Outlets
Background: Michael, a Homeowner from Dover, NH
I am enclosing my back deck, and running a new electrical circuit for the lights and outlets. I am planning on using 14-gauge wire for the circuit, which will be on a 15 amp afci breaker. But, I read somewhere that the national electrical code requires 12-gauge wire. Is that true? Does either a national or state (New Hampshire) code require that smallest allowable gauge wire is 12-gauge?
Additional Comments: very helpful
Thanks for your electrical question Michael.
I am not aware of your local code, however for general purpose circuits either 15 or 20 amp circuits are acceptable, however the determining factor will be the actual connected loads created by the light fixtures and the devices that will be plugged into the outlets.
Enjoy your project and don’t forget to file a permit and get an inspection. That action alone will have determined your local code requirement.
I have provided the following links that lead to fully detailed information on this website that will assist you with your electrical question:
AFCI Circuit Breakers
AFCI Circuit Electrical Codes
House Wiring Circuits and Circuit Breakers
Electrical Panel Circuit Listing
Lighting For The Home
Lighting Electrical Codes
Electrical Wire for the Home
For more information about Electrical Code
You Can Avoid Costly Mistakes!
Here's How to Do It:
Wire It Right with the help of my Illustrated Wiring Book
Great for any Home Wiring Project.
Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handywomen, and Electricians
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
How to Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
....and much more.
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
Electrical Tips to Help You Wire it Right
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!
The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!
The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets
Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency
Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included
Tests standard 3-wire outlets
Light indicates if wiring is incorrect
Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!
The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.