Situation: Have a jetted bathtub that requires 2 15A gfci outlets each to its own breaker. Problem only have one wire running into tub area (would have to tear up.newly installed floor to run another. Is it possible to use that single wire and connect two wires and run to the outlets and connect two wires to the other end of the wire (wire is approx 8 ft) and run those to the breaker box and attach to two gcfi breakers

  • Can you mount a subpanel somewhere near, but not inside, the bathroom? Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 3:49
  • With the layout it's not really a feasible option.
    – Rock
    Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 3:54

1 Answer 1


NO WAY!!!!

If I understand you correctly, you want to run 2 15A circuits over one cable. You can't do that. (There are certain exceptions involving a 3-wire cable, but I assume you are describing an ordinary 2-wire (plus ground) cable.) Depending on how you wire up those two circuits, you would either end up overloading the wires (30A on wires designed for 15A) or just outright zapping everything by ending up with 240V when you want 120V.

Following up a bit more based on comments:

Assuming that each device specified by the manufacturer only actually uses 7.5A, that would be too much for a single 15A circuit (therefore requiring two separate circuits) but small enough (15A is less than the 16A continuous limit for a 20A circuit) to fit on a 20A circuit, and therefore on 12 AWG wire.

However, aside from being a violation of the manufacturer's instructions, which is a big no-no on permanently wired devices, there is a potentially fatal flaw:

If you slam two circuits into one, you have no way to control which circuit actually carries the load! It might go 50/50 (as planned) but it might not. In addition, if one of those wires comes out, you now have all 15A of load going over a single circuit. While technically OK in the short-term, that is exactly what the manufacturer is trying to avoid by having you use two circuits in the first place. In addition, if there are any startup loads then there could be real honest-to-goodness overloads involved as well.

But wait, there's more! This will probably not actually work anyway because not only do you want to nominally split the circuits 50/50 for load purposes, you must split the loads consistently on hot and neutral. That just ain't gonna happen. Which means you may end up with frequent GFCI trips. Which inevitably leads to "who needs this GFCI stuff anyway". Which leads to taking out the GFCI and replacing with regular breakers "just for a little while to test things". Which of course becomes permanent. Which results in serious (possibly fatal) problems when there actually is a ground fault in a bathtub.

NO @#()$@&#$)!@@# WAY!

  • Thanks for the response. Basically it would look like a straight line (8ft 12-2 wire) with two Ya on each end. So something like this >-<. 2 gcfi outlets - wire- 2 gcfi breakers. The motor for the jets and the air pump both pull 7.5 amps. I'm using 12-2 wire and I have a 20 amp gcfi breaker and 15 amp gcfi outlet
    – Rock
    Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 2:40
  • I don't know if it will jump the breaker if I only use one wire one outer and one breaker
    – Rock
    Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 2:41
  • No, just no. You are violating the manufacturer's instructions. If that results in a fire, your insurance will not pay. Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 2:46
  • Well #$@*. Thanks for the info though. Guess I'll just have to drill a hole in the floor and seal it really well to run a new wire. Crappy instructions with the tub. One set says runs on a 15A circuit but when you get into the manufacturer specs on the website it says use two 15A circuits.
    – Rock
    Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 3:05
  • Based on what you have described, this could have been designed to run on a single 20A circuit. My guess is that they have multiple models and some would not work on a single 20A, so they just say to run any/all on 2 separate 15A circuits. But that is just a guess, and there may be other factors going into the "2 circuits" rule. Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 3:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.