Do You Need A Dedicated Circuit For A Freezer Or Fridge?
Are you preparing to shelter in place or do you have a great number of mouths to feed in your home? Many homeowners who stockpile food in case of an emergency, or who just have a larger family tend to use an extra freezer to keep their food stocked in their garages. Holding 35 lbs of food, a 6 cubic-foot freezer would be sufficient for a basic family of four, but if you’re planning on storing some extra food in a freezer in the event of an emergency or just to make some extra room in your kitchen freezer, you’ll want to read this article and make sure your garage wiring is set up for this kind of installation.
We’re urging our community to be aware of your panel’s capabilities to support your appliances. Unless your home is fairly new, it's possible that your panel or garage outlet isn't properly wired to support a new freezer or refrigerator.
Do Refrigerators Need Dedicated Circuits?
Having the refrigerator on its own dedicated circuit is the recommended best practice for most homeowners. Most refrigerators run between 3 to 6 amps, with that said, a refrigerator can spike at peak usage up to 15 amps, but it’s best to take into consideration worst case scenarios. You should have refrigerators and freezers installed on a 15-20 amp dedicated 120 volt circuit. This will help you avoid an electrical overload due to your current wiring not being capable of handling the additional power. Keep in mind that even if you don’t place your freezer or refrigerator in your garage, it is still required that freezers be on a dedicated 120 volt circuit.
Be Safe & Follow The Rules
In addition to all these guidelines, please follow the power requirements dictated by the manufacturer for your appliances. Feel free to call a professional electrician if you have any questions or if you need to make sure your panel is capable of supporting a freezer or fridge. An electrician can also help you install a GFCI outlet in your garage to support these appliances. By doing this, you will ensure the safety of your electrical system without having to worry that your GFCI outlet will trip, resulting in all your food going bad. If your circuit breaker keeps tripping, because you’ve recently added a refrigerator or freezer, please take the time and contact a qualified electrician to come have a look at your breaker panel and help you find the right solution to the issue.
GFCI Outlets & Backup Generators Can Come In Handy
Another useful device is a GFCI with a trip alarm, which our skilled Longmont electricians would be happy to install for you. They are fairly inexpensive and will make monitoring your outlets and devices much easier. Taking these precautions will ensure that your home stays safe from hazardous electrical malfunctions, and will keep the food you spent valuable money on from perishing.