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Power for a Microwave Circuit

How to Install an Electrical Circuit for a Microwave Oven: Dedicated Circuit for a Microwave Oven, Example of a Microwave Oven Circuit.

Home Electrical Wiring Video

Hooking Up a Generator to the House Panel
Using a Circuit Breaker Interlock Kit
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Guide to Circuit Wiring for a Microwave Oven
Electrical Question: I have a new forced air heater I now run when my wife is chilled.

I have good copper wiring throughout the house. I am considering running a 120 volt leg off the 240 volt circuit that supplies the oven and range outlet thus sharing the oven range power with the microwave.

My Electrical Questions Are:


This electrical wiring question came from: Alan, a Handyman from Memphis, Tennessee.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Alan.

How to Wire a Microwave Oven Circuit

Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, electric drill,  auger bits and extension cord.
Safety Measures: Personal safety and construction safety measures must be practiced as needed for the type of construction materials that are present and the circuit wiring methods which will be performed.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools and install electrical circuit wiring.
Notice: Installing a dedicated microwave outlet and electrical circuit wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.

Electrical Answer Specific to this Question about Power for a Microwave Oven

The proposed plan to tap 120 volts from the 60 amp oven range circuit to be used for the microwave oven, or anything else is highly dangerous and should be avoided.

Example of Installing a Circuit for a Microwave Oven

  1. Typically the required circuit for a microwave oven is 120 volt 20 amps.
  2. The electrical panel supplying the circuit must have additional amperage capacity and the available space for the additional circuit breaker.
  3. A 12-2 with ground Type NM Cable is installed from the electrical panel to the location of the microwave oven.
  4. An outlet box is installed with a 20 amp rated electrical outlet and cover plate for the microwave oven cord connection.
  5. A 20 amp rated circuit breaker is installed in the electrical panel supplying the circuit power for the dedicated circuit.

More about Wiring for a Microwave Oven Circuit

Wiring a Microwave Oven
Microwave Wiring

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Circuit Wiring
Circuit Wiring

Electrical Circuit Wiring

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Home Electrical Circuit Breakers


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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 UL Listed 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.

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FAQs Frequently Asked Questions and Comments

2 Responses to “Power for a Microwave Circuit”
  1. Madelin Weiss says:

    I have a gas range that is plugged into a 110 volt line. I am having an over the oven microwave oven installed – can the new microwave use the same 110 volt outlet as the range?

  2. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Madelin,
    The 110 volt outlet that is located behind the gas range is typically on a shared circuit because a gas range does not require a dedicated circuit. A microwave oven does require a dedicated 120 volt circuit so that the outlet and circuit is not shared which will prevent the circuit from becoming overloaded which will trip the circuit breaker. If the outlet behind the range is on a separate circuit then yes, it may be routed up and used for the microwave oven, however this would have to be verified.