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Subject: How much light on one circuit?

You should be fine. The watts = volts * amps is not entirely accurate, it
really results in VA (an easier unit for AC). On a 15 amp circuit you can
get about 2 kW or so, but don't push it. The NEC (National Electrical Code)
says you are supposed to use the next size up in wire if you go over 80%
continuous load on a circuit, which puts you at about 1600 watts.

The easiest way to keep safe is to assume you can use 12 amps on a 15 amp
circuit (thats 80% of capacity). You will be better off using amp ratings
that watt ratings since watts aren't always as they seem for AC electrical

Just to give you an idea, I have been running 110 watts of CF lighting,
plus 8 more watts of T5 lighting (on a 2.5 gallon), along with 425 watts
worth of heaters, two power heads and two Aquaclear 200's on a 15 amp
circuit for some 8-10 years now along with plenty of miscellaneous
household stuff and I've never had a problem. I even had 80 watts of
halogens on there for a while without trouble (failed expieriment). You
won't push a 15 amp circuit until you start looking at BIG setups, and
usually then only with marine tanks where there are usually much larger
pumps and more of them.


>Here is another question.  My  house was wired in 68. My fish-room and
>a couple of other rooms are all on the same 15 amp circuit.  Is there a
>way to know how much light I can plug in back there before I have to
>call either an electrician or the fire department? (Either one would have
>a big impact on the capital budget).