A typical garage needs proper lighting and has a plethora of high powered equipment and tools. This means that the installation of a garage wiring is a sensitive issue that needs to be handled delicately. Here are some of the issues to keep in mind when wiring the garage:
Find Out If the Existing Panel Is Adequate
A typical garage has several high-powered power tools, which means the total electricity required in the garage is likely to be high. Therefore, confirm first if the existing electrical panel will be able to handle the load and has space for the circuit breakers. Otherwise, you may have to add a subpanel for the garage.
Determine How Many Dedicated Circuits You Need
High-powered equipment or power tools need to be on their own dedicated circuits. This reduces the risk of circuit overload. Adding a dedicated circuit during the design and installation phase is easier than doing so once the wiring is complete. Therefore, determine how many of these circuits you need beforehand.
Install GFCI Receptacles
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) receptacle is designed to shut off power when it detects that power is flowing along an unintended path in a circuit. Again, the need for GFCI receptacles is connected to the large current and voltage that many garage tools and instruments require. Such equipment and instruments can cause fatal electrical shocks or serious damage without GFCI protection.
Install Outlets Higher Than Normal
Installing outlets close to the floor is dangerous for several reasons. First, a typical garage floor is likely to be littered with tools that can damage electrical lines. Secondly, installing receptacles near the floor also makes then difficult to use for handheld power tools. Lastly, receptacles installed to close to the floor will be difficult to use for tools on top of workbenches. Therefore, install them a little bit higher than what is normally considered normal.
Overhead Light on a Separate Circuit
Lastly, it's advisable to have the overhead light wiring on a separate circuit to make your garage safe. If the overhead light fixtures share the circuit with other fixtures, then you will remain in the dark if a malfunction happens and an equipment trips up the circuit. You know how dangerous it is to walk in a garage in the dark.
As you can see, these issues are too sensitive to be handled by DIY installers. Ideally, your garage's electrical wiring should be handled by a professional electrical contractor, such as from Motor Shop Electrical Construction Co.