# How can I know the 'capacity' of an electric socket?

I bought an electric oven, and the safety instructions say that it should be plugged to an electric socket with "capacity at least 10 Ampere".

How can I tell the capacity of my electric sockets?

I looked at the fuses in the electric control box outside the house. There are 5 fuses with "6 kA" written near them, and the main fuse with "10 kA". But the safety instructions talk about the capacity of the socket, not the fuse.

• Where in the world are you and this oven? Standards vary widely in different countries. So a more relevant answer will be likely if you mention that. Mar 18, 2014 at 3:41
• Profile says Israel
– Jack
Mar 18, 2014 at 4:36

You need to trace the outlet back to the circuit breaker/fuse in the main panel and then see what amperage is carried by the circuit. Then you need to also find out what other outlets exist on the same circuit and what appliances are or can be plugged into them. If you overload a circuit (e.g. run your oven at the same time as running a circular saw out of a different outlet on the same circuit), the chances are the breaker will trip. That is less of an inconvenience than blowing a fuse that needs to be replaced. I am pretty sure that you use fuses and not breakers in your country but I may be wrong.

• Each of the 5 fuses in the electric box say "6 kA". What does it mean? 6000 Ampere apparently means that I don't have to worry at all about 10 Ampere devices. Mar 18, 2014 at 7:05
• That's more likely to be the current they can interrupt, unless you are running an induction furnace in your kitchen. Mar 18, 2014 at 13:03
• @ErelSegalHalevi: If something were to directly connect the hot and neutral wires, it would be possible that hundreds or even thousands of amps might flow until the fuse blows. The rating on the fuse indicates that provided something limits the current to 6,000 amps or less (in most places, the electric company's equipment wouldn't be able to supply that much to a single residence) the fuse will interrupt the power without exploding and sending flaming bits of metal everywhere. Oct 18, 2014 at 22:49

If you have a device that draws 10amps, then the entire circuit needs to support that draw. This includes the circuit breaker, wire gauge, length and receptacle rating.

In the US where the household voltage is 120V, a typical lighting or outlet circuit is 15Amps, but you're only supposed to use 80%, so that leaves 12amps available. All other devices on the circuit count towards this limit.

So if your device needs 10amp, that means you can only have an additional 2 on the circuit.

`Watts = Volts * Amps`

`240 Watts = 120V * 2amps`

So as long as the wattage of other devices on the circuit add up to 240 or less, you would have enough capacity.