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Question DetailsAsked on 5/20/2016

How much does it cost to run a dedicated 20AMP electrical line from breaker box to a room 25 feet away?

Breaker box is located in a room a story below and needs to snake through one floor plus 2 rooms. Desired dedicated line is for a wall space heater requiring 12.5 AMPs with no other outlets but one.

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Depends on difficulty in running the wire of course, and not including needed drywall/plaster repair and repainting to repair the access points, but probably in the ballpark of $500-800 for the electrician inclulding all materials except the heater itself, assuming your breaker box has the capacity for that size circuit.

If it actually needs 12.5 amps - so a 1500 watt heater - a 12.5A continuous draw would be considered an overload for a 15A circuit (continuous load should not exceed 80% of rated capacity), so should be wired as a 20A circuit for safety (as you indicated), with a 15A or 20A breaker. That will reduce wasteful losses in the wiring by using larger wiring (probably 12ga wire for that short a run) and reduce the chance of overheating in the wiring. Technically a 15A breaker would be 3% overloaded with a 1500W continuous load - most electricians might not worry about that if that were the ONLY thing on the circuit, but by code should technically be a 20A breaker too.

You said no other outlets except one - first - does the device say it requires a dedicated circuit ? If so, then no other outlet should be on the circuit. Also, what is going to be or might be on that other outlet - that load needs to be figured into the circuit total load. IF more than 3.5A draw (420W) if continuous load, or 4.4A (525W) if short-term load, even a 20A circuit would be considered overloaded.

My EMPHATIC recommendation on this - recommend asbestos sheet or rock wool backing in the wall for the enclosure whether required by code in your area or not, because all too many in-wall electric heaters catch fire because as they heat the wall materials over time, the materials (wood or cellulose insulation) becomes more susceptible to combustion. Also, if the electrician needs to put in a junction box to feed the heater (as opposed to direct-wiring to it) make sure he uses metal - I have seen melted plastic boxes placed within a foot or less of wall heaters like this. Also best to come in from below rather than over the top with the wiring if possible, to reduce the heat exposure of the wiring over time, and protect the wiring with insulation to the extent possible - not run right next to the exterior heater housing even if technically allowed per manufacturer instructions.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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