Adding Electric Baseboard Heaters to an Existing Circuit, Wiring Four Light Switches and Changing Light Switching Around
July 6, 2010
First you need to determine the rating of your unit-mounted thermostats. They need to be rated for the total load which you intend on controlling with the t-stat. For example if you plan to add another 500 watts of heat, then your t-stat needs to be rated for 1,500 watts or more; if you are going to control both heaters with one t-stat.
To convert wattage to amperage, simple divide watts by volts. So let’s say that your heater is 1000 watts at 240 volts. Then this heater would draw 4.17 amps. So, in this scenario, it would be OK to add more heaters to this circuit.
Typically, electric baseboard heat is on a 30 amp circuit at 240 volts using #10 AWG wiring in a house. However, sometimes you will find lighter loads on a 20 amp circuit at 240 volts using #12 AWG wire.
I have one home run (12-2 romex) ran to a 4 gang box for 4 light switches. How do I wire up the 4 gang box?
I’m going to assume that there is only one power supply cable and 4 switch leg cables (romex to the lights); and that the power is off. If this is the case, then connect all of the ground wires (bare copper) together and leave 4 tails to connect to the ground screws on each of the switches. Connect all of the neutrals (white wires) together and tuck these into the box. Cut 4 pieces of #12 AWG black wire approximately 8 inches long and connect them to the home run black wire. Now connect each black switch leg (black wire which goes to the light) to each switch. Next connect one each of the power supply tails to each switch. Install the switches and cover plate. Turn on the power and test.
I have 2 wall switches for recessed lights. #1 has ten lights. #2 has only two. Is it possible to move two lights from # 1 and add them to #2. (how, if possible?) Contractor went overboard in the kitchen and under board in the dining area!
Anything is possible. It depends on your framing, but you’ll probably need to cut some sheetrock to do this. What you need to do is install a 2 conductor NM cable with a ground (romex) from one of the lights on #2 switch to the 2 lights which you want on #1 switch. You need to disconnect the existing wiring to the lights on #1 switch, wire nut the ends and tuck them back into the boxes before connecting the new wiring from switch #2.
This type of question is best suited for my DIY Electrical Wiring Help from a Master Electrician service. There are lots of tricks and tips that I could offer here which may help prevent the need to cut any sheetrock and possibly some wiring tricks as well.
Do you need assistance with your electrical wiring project? Please visit my DIY Electrical Wiring Help from a Master Electrician page. Where I provide electrical wiring tips, expert electrical advice, answers to your electrical questions and electrical consulting & design services over the phone, via instant messenger or via email.
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