During the holidays, beautiful Christmas decor lights up neighborhoods. But how many watts can you put on a 15 amp breaker? As beautiful as Christmas lights are, they can cause a trip in the breaker or an outage if you overload the breaker. On average, a 15 amp breaker can run a one 1K light each without blowing or about 1800 – 2000 watts. The only issue with relying on this formula is that it is advisable to only load a breaker up to 80 percent of its capacity. Overloading a 15 amp breaker can lead to very dangerous situations. It is best to have a certified, trusted electrician to assist with any electrical work.
15 amp breaker
If you have a 15 amp breaker, or a 20 amp breaker, there is not a specific number of lights and outlets that can go on it. It is dependent on the wattage of the lights. This is because the number of outlets on a 15 amp or 20 amp circuit depends entirely on what you plug into those outlets and how much wattage and amperage it uses. For example, if you plug in an appliance that uses 15 amps then you cannot use another appliance that takes up 10 amps or will you blow the circuit. Generally, homes have eight to 10 outlets on a 15 amp breaker but not all are used at the same time.
Lights and outlets are normally wired on separate branch circuits, which means that the lights will be protected by a separate circuit breaker to the one which protects the outlets. The amount of lights and outlets that can be installed to the breaker box will depend on the wattage and amperage that is drawn by each light. Another aspect to consider to whether or not they will all be switched on together at the same time. Household devices are required to run at 110-125 volts and most are rated at 115 volts so 1725 watts for a 15 amp cord or circuit.
You will have to be careful when adding outlets for a 15 amp breaker. Always be sure to consult a licensed electrician before DIY electrical work.