I need to add a new circuit that will have only 2 receptacles, one for a washer and another one for a dryer. This will be a 20 amp circuit. Can someone please tell me how to wire the two outlets together? I have experience with changing outlets but never added an outlet from another one and want to make sure I wire everything correctly before calling over an inspector to check the work.

  • 1
    One of those should better be a GFCI receptacle (unless the circuit itself has a GFCI breaker) Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 16:30
  • @ratchetfreak - I thought a GFCI was only required for a laundry room outlet if it's within 6 ft of a laundry sink. If no sink then it's not required. Or are you speaking of a best-practice recommendation for safety to use a GFCI outlet even if it's not strictly required by the NEC?
    – Johnny
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 19:28
  • @Johnny best practice, and we just had a question where the thing was useful. Also depends on jurisdiction; in Belgium the laundry room is part of the "wet area" which requires a 30mA GFCI (rest of the house needs a common 300mA) Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 19:34
  • @ratchetfreak Electrical motors often nuisance trip GFCI outlets (see diy.stackexchange.com/questions/26745/…). I had to remove my GFCI outlet as it was incompatible with the washer.
    – gbronner
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 21:00
  • 1
    @gbronner You could try a different break time rated GFCI instead, a G type will break immediately while a S or T type will delay and allow the current to stabilize. Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 21:16

1 Answer 1


Wire from the panel to the closest outlet. Use Ratchet Freak's recommendation of using a GFCI since this has a potential to become a wet location. Put the GFCI at the first outlet location and wire the line/feed side of the outlet to the wire running from the panel. Add a second wire that will chain the second outlet to this outlet. On the GFCI, the second wire will attach to the load side of the outlet and the other end will wire to a normal outlet.

For a 20 amp circuit, you will be using at minimum 12 gauge wire. Make sure the wires are anchored to the studs outside the box and they are running through the middle of the studs to protect from screws/nails. If you have to notch a stud to run the wires, make sure you add a nail plate over the notch.

  • Is there a reason a GFCI protected 5-20T duplex outlet cannot be used here? To me, it would make more sense to have a single duplex outlet in this case unless you anticipate loads such as a clothes iron being plugged in here... Commented Dec 5, 2014 at 2:00
  • @ThreePhaseEel - I'm assuming from his question that the washer and dryer will not be side to side as they typically are. I've been in plenty of homes where they are either facing each other on opposite walls or in a corner with a water heater between them. Sometimes you just have to work with the layout you are given.
    – diceless
    Commented Dec 5, 2014 at 18:06
  • Why a GFI? If there is a laundry sink in the area then yes, it is required, but if not what do you think is being gained by the GFI. And NO, without a sink it is NOT considered a wet area. And WHY in the world would a 5-20R be needed??? Commented Dec 29, 2014 at 22:50
  • @diceless -- understandable Commented Jan 27, 2015 at 0:03
  • @SpeedyPetey -- 210.8(A)(10) in the 2014 NEC calls out laundry areas without regard to the presence of a laundry sink. The 5-20T was simply a suggestion based on the use of a single duplex receptacle on a 20A circuit -- I'd be fine with a pair of 5-15 duplex receptacles instead. Commented Jan 27, 2015 at 0:06

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