Does a dishwasher need a dedicated circuit?

  • By: Emma
  • Date: December 2, 2022
  • Time to read: 4 min.

When it comes to dishwashers, there are a lot of things to consider. For example, does it need a dedicated circuit? This is an important question because it can impact your dishwasher’s function and safety.

Keep reading to learn more about dishwashers and circuits to make the best decision for your home.

Does a dishwasher need a dedicated circuit?

A dishwasher needs a dedicated circuit. The dishwasher consumes 1200 to 2400 Watts of power, depending upon its different heat cycles. A dishwasher needs uninterrupted power in different settings, which makes a dedicated circuit very important. A dedicated circuit of 15-20 amps with a wire thickness of 12/2 Nm to 14/2 Nm must be used with a dishwasher. 

Types of CircuitVoltageWire gauge
15amp120 volts12/2
20amp125 volts14/2
Table 1. Types of circuit and wire gauge required dishwasher

How many amps is a typical dishwasher?

Most dishwashers require between 10 and 15 amps, with the majority falling in the 12 to 14 amp range. Dishwashers that are larger or have more powerful motors may require up to 20 amps.

What size breaker do I need for a dishwasher?

A dishwasher typically requires a 15-amp circuit breaker. However, some dishwashers require a 20-amp circuit breaker. To be sure, check the owner’s manual or the manufacturer’s website to find out what size circuit breaker is required for your dishwasher.

If you have a 15-amp circuit and want to install a dishwasher that requires a 20-amp circuit, you will need to hire an electrician to upgrade your electrical system.

Can a dishwasher be on the same circuit as outlets?

A dishwasher typically requires a 20-amp circuit, which is why most homes have a dedicated circuit for this appliance.

But can a dishwasher run on a 15-amp circuit? The answer is yes, but there are some caveats.

First, the dishwasher will likely not be able to reach its full cycle time and may wash less effectively. Second, running the dishwasher on a lower-amp circuit may cause the breaker to trip more frequently.

Can a dishwasher run on a 15-amp circuit?

Yes, a dishwasher can technically run on a 15-amp circuit, but it’s not recommended. Dishwashers typically require 20-amp circuits to run correctly. If you try to run a dishwasher on a 15-amp circuit, it may not have enough power to operate the motor and heat the water to the proper temperature.

What appliances need a dedicated circuit?

Many appliances in a home need a dedicated circuit to function correctly and prevent the overloading of the home’s electrical system. This is because these appliances require a lot of power and can cause problems if they share a circuit with other appliances.

Some examples of appliances that need a dedicated circuit are washers, dryers, stoves, and dishwashers. To determine if an appliance needs a dedicated circuit, consult the owner’s manual or a qualified electrician.

Do you need a GFCI for a dishwasher?

A GFCI, or ground fault circuit interrupter, is a circuit breaker used to protect against electrical shocks. It works by sensing when a current flows through an unintended path, such as through water, and then shuts off the power to prevent a shock.

Dishwashers typically do not require a GFCI because they are not typically exposed to water.

Can a dishwasher and microwave be on the same circuit?

Yes, a dishwasher and microwave can be on the same circuit. The dishwasher typically uses around 1200 watts, while the microwave uses around 1000 watts. So, the two together will not overload the circuit.

Steps to install a dedicated circuit

Installing a dedicated circuit is not as difficult as one might think. Any home handyman can do it with a few simple steps and the proper tools. Here are the steps to install a dedicated circuit:

  1. Turn off the power to the panel at the main breaker.
  2. Remove the cover from the panel.
  3. Locate the space for the new circuit breaker.
  4. Install the circuit breaker and attach the wires to the new circuit.
  5. Turn on the power, and test for proper operation.
  6. Replace the panel cover and restore power to the main breaker.

Why does my dishwasher keep tripping the GFCI?

If your dishwasher keeps tripping the GFCI, there could be several reasons. One reason could be that the GFCI is old and needs to be replaced. Another reason could be that there is too much moisture in the dishwasher. If this is the case, you can try opening the door to let some steam out.

Does a dishwasher need to be on an arc fault breaker?

No, a dishwasher must not be on an arc fault breaker. They are designed to operate on normal household circuits. The main reason why people put them on arc fault breakers is that it provides an extra layer of protection against electrical fires.

However, this is unnecessary, and dishwashers can function perfectly fine without being on an arc fault breaker.


Yes, a dishwasher needs a dedicated circuit. This is because dishwashers require a lot of power to operate and can overload a standard circuit. A dedicated circuit ensures that the dishwasher has its power source and won’t trip the breaker.


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