how many outlets can you put on a 15amp breaker ?

  • How many receptacles can I place on a 20 ampere 120 volt breaker? has also been asked before.
    – Tester101
    Mar 1, 2016 at 13:09
  • An anecdotal experience here: I put in a new 15-amp breaker in my basement, which is dedicated to controlling wall and ceiling outlets. This has 16 double receptacles in total, and the city's electrical inspector didn't seem to have any problems with the number.
    – alt
    Mar 1, 2016 at 17:25

2 Answers 2


It depends on your local Building Codes, Local Electricians, what you think might end up using the circuit & if there's carpet...An average Upright Vacuum Cleaner sucks up (pun intended) most of the 15-amps. But, some used to say 6, then 8 then 10 & now I'm hearing 12. Some go with a "Rule of Thumb" being 1.5 Amps per outlet to arrive at the 10 number.

I prefer to do Home-Runs for each average sized room & might hit 8 which includes a single light. But, I also use 12-gauge regardless of whether I'm doing 15 or 20-amps on both ends, in case a 15 needs to have both ends bumped up to 20's in the future.

  • +1 But I try to keep the light separate from the outlets. If using the vacuum and leaf blower blows (pun intended) the circuit, you wont be sweeping in the dark.
    – bib
    Mar 1, 2016 at 12:38
  • And I understand the benefits of 12 everywhere, cost is small, flexibility, but box fill and wire handling keep pushing me back to 14 in most cases.
    – bib
    Mar 1, 2016 at 12:40
  • I used to agree with both of your comments & did it because that's what people said. But, I never found an extension corded light to be a hassle & maybe 1 room in my project buildings had a light separated. I like the 1 breaker switch to kill the entire room idea a lot. Yeah, 12's wear you out but the back insert screw-down clamping outlets got rid of that. Plus, I'm not an electrician doing it daily & I use only Commercial Grade.
    – Iggy
    Mar 1, 2016 at 13:12

According to the National Electrical Code, there is no limit on receptacles in residential occupancies. Limits on commercial occupancies do not apply to dwelling units.

You are free to decide how many receptacles you want on each circuit.

The only caveat is, if you are putting 15 amp receptacles on a 20 amp circuit then you must have a minimum of 2 receptacles but there is no maximum.

Good luck!

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