Written by Larry Cook

The Importance of Dedicated Circuits for Your Home

Assigned a specific purpose, a dedicated circuit is equipped with its own circuit breaker in the electrical box. It is meant to be used by only one appliance, making it “dedicated”. No other appliance will use its outlet or the electricity from this circuit. A dedicated circuit makes sure that a large appliance that consumes a great amount of electricity will be provided adequate access to the power it requires, preventing an overloaded system, which would result in a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker.


Some medium-duty appliances, such as a microwave or toaster, may require a 20-amp dedicated circuit. In comparison, a 30-50 amp dedicated circuit would be needed for heavy-duty appliances like a washer or dryer. Normally, these circuits feature “double pole” protection, which prevents the circuit from pulling an excessive amount of electricity, perhaps causing a fire.

Home Appliances & Equipment

The National Electrical Code requires a dedicated circuit for large electrical appliances, including washers, dryers, furnaces, refrigerators, and stoves. Each dedicated circuit ensures adequate electricity is available for the safe operation of appliances, preventing an overloaded system. All electrical equipment in a home that consume great amounts of electricity, such as a pool pump or HVAC, should be equipped with a dedicated circuit.

Safety Importance

Dedicated circuits not only protect appliances, but also your family and home. An appliance without this safety feature can consume more electricity than the shared circuit can handle, causing tripped breakers, blown fuses, and overheated wire insulation, possibly causing an electrical fire. According to the ESFI, electrical fires cause 43,700 home fires in the U.S. annually, resulting in 430 deaths.

Keep in mind that a mismatched dedicated circuit that has improper wire size and inadequate amperage for the appliances they serve may lead to overheating or fire. Fortunately, a home inspection by an experienced licensed electrician can assess the situation and make the repair.

Electrical Peace of Mind

Providing professional electricians since 1988 in Maryland, Cook Electric is the company you can rely on for all your electrical service needs, including:

  • Commercial & Residential Electrical Installations
  • Marina & Residential Pier Wiring
  • Electrical Service & Repair
  • Specialty Electrical Services

For knowledgeable, fair, honest, reliable, and conscientious service, call Cook Electric today at (410) 266-9040. They will be very glad to help you.