New Kitchen Circuits Using 12-3

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by DrummerDad, Jul 23, 2007.

  1. DrummerDad

    DrummerDad New Member

    Jul 12, 2007
    I am doing a 'minor' upgrade to part of my kitchen. You know the routine -- its a domino effect, where ruined subfloor, lead to ripping out counter, sink, and base cabinet along one wall, lead to redoing kitchen plumbing, lead to opening drywall to inspect for further damage, lead to running some new circuits.

    OK, here is my question. I want to add a couple of circuits to take some pressure off of the existing 15 amp circuit. One circuit for a couple of receptacles along the counter, and another circuit dedicated for the dishwasher. Since this is all on the same wall, I want to do a home-run back to the box with 12-3, and split it in the kitchen between the two circuits. Will this be considered balanced, or does it violate code? If so, am I better off with separate 12-2 home-runs?

    My wife thinks it has crossed the line to become a 'major' remodel. Something about not being able to function in a kitchen all torn up with no plumbing. I need answers fast, or my next project is to build a 'dog house' out in the garage.

  2. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Jun 14, 2007
    North Carolina
    A multiwire circuit will do well for this installation. in the first box be sure to not cross the neutral from the 3 conductor and the diswasher with the load side of the required GFCI receptacle and every thing will work fine.
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  4. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    RUn two 12/2 circuits and don't worry about it. The neutral is only balanced if there is the same current in both hot leads, which won't likely happen.
  5. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Nov 12, 2005
    Rather than running 12/3 just run 2 seperate circuits.
  6. dx

    dx General Contractor

    Jul 4, 2005
    General Contractor
    Disagree. Multiwire circuits are poorly understood by some electricians I know, let alone homeowners. It is crucial that the red and black be on different buses. Otherwise the neutral gets overloaded and is a fire hazard.

    Even if properly coached, a DIY may later forget the whole thing and move breakers around in the panel, ending up with both breakers on the same bus.

    Keep it simple and use 2 cables.

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