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How far apart should electric receptacle outlets be placed in a garage?
Sunday, August 5, 2018
There is no requirement for spacing of receptacles. But minimum of one 120-volt 20-amp dedicated circuit is required for a garage, and one receptacle per parking bay, according to National Electrical Code [NEC 211.10(C)(4)]. Only one receptacle was formerly required, no mater how large the garage, but it was upped to one per bay by the 2014 NEC.
We often see only one receptacle in a garage, which would meet the old minimum standard. But one is not sufficient for most do-it-yourselfers, who line the walls of a two-car garage with power tools and hobby equipment, so we typically see builders providing one outlet on each side wall. The receptacles are required to be GFCI for shock protection. One of the garage receptacles will typically have a GFCI-device in the center—with the two buttons in the center for “TEST” and “RESET.” It will trip when a ground fault (current that has gone astray and my possibly be shocking you) happens at any of the other garage receptacles because they are also on the same circuit.
The GFCI-circuit for in the garage is also allowed to protect any receptacles on the exterior walls of your home. Code requires that the garage circuit serve no other room, but makes an exception for exterior receptacle outlets. So, if one of the exterior receptacles goes dead, check to see if the garage GFCI needs to be reset.
Also, see our blog posts Where are GFCI receptacle outlets required? and How far apart should electric receptacles be spaced in a bathroom? and What is the code requirement for receptacle outlets in a closet? and How many electrical receptacle outlets are required in a hallway? and How far apart should kitchen counter receptacles be spaced? and What is the code requirement for receptacle outlets in a foyer? and Is a house required to have outdoor electric receptacle outlets?
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To learn more about electrical wiring, devices, and receptacles, see these other blog posts:
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