Refrigerator Outlet (yes, again..)

Jerramundi

Senior Member
Location
Chicago
Occupation
Licensed Residential Electrician
See post #9 - (two options for the fridge)
I suppose so if you consider all SABC's to be one option. Personally, I consider the SABC that feeds the non-counter top kitchen wall receptacles and the dinning room wall receptacles a third option apart from the mandatory two SABC's that feed the counter top receptacles.

One could say it's either (1) SABC or (2) Dedicated, but I feel like that lacks nuance. Had Larry not suggested the SABC that feeds the kitchen / dining room wall receptacles I would have been stuck on either (1) on with counter tops or (2) dedicated.
 

Jerramundi

Senior Member
Location
Chicago
Occupation
Licensed Residential Electrician
I'm curious... if all kitchen wall receptacles have to be fed by an SABC and SABC's cannot have the range hood on it... would that not make a code compliant chord and plug connected range hood logically impossible? :unsure:

Would that not also mean that a dedicated circuit for the fridge would HAVE to be 20A as well?
 

Little Bill

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Tennessee NEC:2017
Occupation
Electrician
I suppose so if you consider all SABC's to be one option. Personally, I consider the SABC that feeds the non-counter top kitchen wall receptacles and the dinning room wall receptacles a third option apart from the mandatory two SABC's that feed the counter top receptacles.

One could say it's either (1) SABC or (2) Dedicated, but I feel like that lacks nuance. Had Larry not suggested the SABC that feeds the kitchen / dining room wall receptacles I would have been stuck on either (1) on with counter tops or (2) dedicated.
(B) Small Appliances.
(1) Receptacle Outlets Served. In the kitchen, pantry, breakfast
room, dining room, or similar area of a dwelling unit, the
two or more 20-ampere small-appliance branch circuits
required by 210.11(C)(1) shall serve all wall and floor receptacle
outlets covered by 210.52(A), all countertop outlets covered
by 210.52(C), and receptacle outlets for refrigeration equipment.

And

Exception No. 2: In addition to the required receptacles specified by
210.52, a receptacle outlet to serve a specific appliance shall be permitted
to be supplied from an individual branch circuit rated 15 amperes
or greater.
The exception used to just say "refrigeration equipment" but now says "specific appliance", but the 15A or 20A makes it clear the fridge would fall under that.

These are the only two options for the fridge in a kitchen.
 

Jerramundi

Senior Member
Location
Chicago
Occupation
Licensed Residential Electrician
Wouldn't that then mean that the ONLY way to do a chord and plug connected range hood would be a dedicated circuit?

Given that all wall receptacles in the kitchen have to be fed by an SABC and SABC's can't have range hoods on them? You would have to defer to Exception No. 2 in regards to a chord and plug connected range hood.
 

Another C10

Electrical Contractor 1987 - present
Location
Southern Cal
Occupation
Electrician NEC 2020
What is this acronym ... everyone loves acronyms. Sorry if I seem ignorant but half the time I have to try translating the short hand so as to know what I'm reading.
Small appliance branch circuit ... finally saw it on a note above , just call it a kitchen circuit
 

Another C10

Electrical Contractor 1987 - present
Location
Southern Cal
Occupation
Electrician NEC 2020
I'm rethinking the way I typically wire a kitchen...
I'm sure its all changed with the latest greatest minds determining what is best but .. I run a minimum of 5 -7 circuits in a kitchen for typical 120v 20Amp circuits.

1) Refer + oven igniters and maybe 2-3 Outlets in dining
1-2) Dishwasher - Garbage Disps
1) Microwave
2-3) Counter circuits depending on size or anticipated appliances
 

Another C10

Electrical Contractor 1987 - present
Location
Southern Cal
Occupation
Electrician NEC 2020
So I definitively cannot put the fridge on a general purpose lighting/receptacle circuit? Bah humbug.
I'd think that rule came into affect more so because its a bad design, every time the frig cycles the lighting would shutter or the power surge to feed the frig would draw away from the lighting which obviously would be very annoying. Also limiting the lifespan of the filaments within the bulbs.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
How often are these circuits tripping and leaving people in the dark?

The refrigerator runs occasionally. I don't see the issue sharing one of the SABC.
Refrigerators typically have somewhat low draw but run for long periods of time. They are more efficient this way vs high draw and short run period.
Jim, I'm simply trying to conserve as much of the Kitchen Counter Top SABC's as possible. As stated in the OP, I've encountered coffee makers that pull upwards of 15A, so in my mind, conserving as much of those circuits as possible is the ideal outcome.

That being said, I'd put the fridge on a dedicated circuit and be done, but I'm limited to 12 breaker spaces and a panel upgrade isn't in the immediate future.
So make home run for a dedicated circuit and if necessary double it up with another SABC for now and it can be separated later if panel is ever changed.

If coffee maker is on with fridge you not too likely to trip a 20 amp breaker (potential for AFCI tripping is a completely different issue and topic). That coffee maker will only draw ~15 amps long enough to heat what, a quart maybe 2 quarts of water to maybe 140 degrees max? That is the old school coffee makers, today many of them are only heating one serving of 8 to 16 oz at a time. The breaker is never even close to getting very high into trip curve even if the 3-5 amp fridge is also running on same circuit at same time, and possibly not even into trip curve at all
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Wouldn't that then mean that the ONLY way to do a chord and plug connected range hood would be a dedicated circuit?

Given that all wall receptacles in the kitchen have to be fed by an SABC and SABC's can't have range hoods on them? You would have to defer to Exception No. 2 in regards to a chord and plug connected range hood.
210.52(B)(1) contains the required outlets that are not dedicated to something specific (other then refrigeration that is specifically mentioned to be included in the SABC's) it references required receptacles in 210.52A) and (C). Basically the SABC outlets are all those that fit into either the 6-12 general rule or the 2-4 countertop rule plus refrigeration equipment in the kitchen, dining room, pantry, breakfast room, etc.

Outlets inside a cabinet are not part of 210.52 requirements neither are outlets above 5.5 feet above the floor - this is mentioned early in 210.52 (before part (A)). So anything not covered in 210.52 and/or not in kitchen, dining room, party... etc. is one of those "other outlets" that is not permitted to be served by a SABC. Range hood, dishwasher, disposer, compactor, microwave installed in a cabinet, are all examples of outlets in a kitchen that are not 210.52 outlets and none of them are allowed on SABC's. Lighting outlets are not 210.52 outlets either. There is permission to use some the 210.52 outlets in a living room or bedroom as the required lighting outlet for those rooms though, but that is sort of getting outside this thread topic.
 

Jerramundi

Senior Member
Location
Chicago
Occupation
Licensed Residential Electrician
210.52(B)(1) contains the required outlets that are not dedicated to something specific (other then refrigeration that is specifically mentioned to be included in the SABC's) it references required receptacles in 210.52A) and (C). Basically the SABC outlets are all those that fit into either the 6-12 general rule or the 2-4 countertop rule plus refrigeration equipment in the kitchen, dining room, pantry, breakfast room, etc.

Outlets inside a cabinet are not part of 210.52 requirements neither are outlets above 5.5 feet above the floor - this is mentioned early in 210.52 (before part (A)). So anything not covered in 210.52 and/or not in kitchen, dining room, party... etc. is one of those "other outlets" that is not permitted to be served by a SABC. Range hood, dishwasher, disposer, compactor, microwave installed in a cabinet, are all examples of outlets in a kitchen that are not 210.52 outlets and none of them are allowed on SABC's. Lighting outlets are not 210.52 outlets either. There is permission to use some the 210.52 outlets in a living room or bedroom as the required lighting outlet for those rooms though, but that is sort of getting outside this thread topic.
Excellent clarifications. The way it was previously framed, it seemed as if ALL receptacle outlets in the kitchen (without exception) MUST be fed by the SABC's. The in-cabinet and 5.5' AFF are excellent clarifications.

So if the fridge or other item like a microwave were placed inside a cabinet, they in essence "escape" the SABC requirements.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Excellent clarifications. The way it was previously framed, it seemed as if ALL receptacle outlets in the kitchen (without exception) MUST be fed by the SABC's. The in-cabinet and 5.5' AFF are excellent clarifications.

So if the fridge or other item like a microwave were placed inside a cabinet, they in essence "escape" the SABC requirements.
I'd say microwave yes but fridge no, simply because 210.52(B)(1) mentions 210.52(A) outlets, 210.52(C) outlets and also says "and receptacle outlets for refrigeration equipment."
 

Jerramundi

Senior Member
Location
Chicago
Occupation
Licensed Residential Electrician
I'd say microwave yes but fridge no, simply because 210.52(B)(1) mentions 210.52(A) outlets, 210.52(C) outlets and also says "and receptacle outlets for refrigeration equipment."
Fair point as "refrigeration equipment" is mentioned separately from the 210.52(A) outlets, wherein the 5.5' AFF and in-cabinet exceptions exist.
 
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