What is a 5-20amp dedicated circuit?
Most homes in the U.S. are wired with a combination of 15-amp and 20-amp, 120-volt circuits. Because 15-amp receptacles (5-15R) can be used with 20-amp circuits, most of the receptacles you see in homes are the standard 15-amp variety, with two slots and a U-shaped grounding hole. Twenty-amp receptacles (5-20R) have a horizontal slot branching off one of the vertical slots. Plugs designated as 20 amp will not fit into 15-amp outlets.
The most important piece of information when looking at 120v kilns is amperage. You will need to be certain you have a breaker that meets the amperage requirements for your kiln as most of the 5-20R kilns require a dedicated circuit.
A 5-20amp dedicated circuit is set aside with a specific purpose, with its own circuit breaker in your electrical box. A dedicated circuit is intended for use with a single appliance only. No other appliances will be plugged into or utilize the energy from this circuit, making it “dedicated” to that single appliance. Dedicated circuits ensure major appliances that draw a lot of electrical currents are able to access the energy they need without overloading your system, blowing a fuse or tripping a circuit breaker. Appliances without a dedicated circuit may draw more current than the circuit can handle, tripping breakers, blowing fuses, and overheating wire insulation causing breakdown and the possibility of electrical fires.
Additionally, without a 20 amp breaker, your kiln will not reach the desired temperatures to fuse glass. Older homes, apartments, and mobile homes will have 15 amp breakers.
Please do the correct electrical check before ordering a kiln. Kiln Frog cannot be held responsible for kilns ordered that cannot operate at full temperatures due to electrical issues on site.
If you have questions, we always recommend talking to a licensed electrician.