We are going to first take a moment to make sure you understand that electricity is dangerous and is to be respected. Accidents could be fatal, so make sure to take extreme caution when wiring up a marijuana grow room.
Taking the time to determine the electrical design within your specific house will help you know the proper information on which types of grow lights, outlets and switches are connected to which circuit, fuse or breaker of your home. It will also allow you to be sure of what your electrical limits are going to be for each one of those circuits.
- You will save money by not needing an electrician to show up at your house and draw this out for you for any current or future projects.
- You will know what amperage rating your house has within each set of circuits.
- You will know how much electricity you can safely use within your grow room.
- You will know if you need to move high-power draw devices to different circuits. A prime example of this would be an air conditioning unit.
- You will also know how many circuits you are able to use just for your grow room.
MAKE YOUR MAP
Having a trusted friend that you can have help you with this project will help the entire process go more smoothly and more quickly than trying to do it on your own. Just make sure you save this information in a safe and private location.}
- Start off by drawing up a floor-plan map of your entire home on a piece of paper, making sure to mark off each outlet and light fixture. As you mark off each one, make sure nothing is left plugged in.
- Locate your fuse box or circuit breaker panel.
- Use a volt meter, outlet tester or small appliance (such as a small lamp or radio) once you start turning off the different circuits. We recommend an outlet tester due to the increase of information you can get from these, such as polarity, grounding faults and a notification of potential electrical problems.
- Be sure to take note of which outlets are controlled by a light switch and note if both outlets are controlled by the switch or if just one plug is.
- Try out your testing method on a working outlet so you know what you are looking for.
- Now go to your fuse box and turn off one breaker making sure that it is not the main breaker for the entire house.
- Next, you need to take your testing method and go around checking every outlet in the house, noting which outlets are directly controlled by that breaker. The outlets that are turned off are controlled by the breaker you just switched off.
- When that step is complete, make sure you turn that breaker back on again.
- Repeat these steps until you have checked each breaker (or fuse) of the house and marked off each outlets' control breaker. Make sure you turn the breakers back on before you start with another so you do not get any outlets confused on your map.
- Take the time to write each bit of information on the breaker panel (or fuse box) in permanent marker so you will know for future reference. A good reference for this is the main room that the outlets are located (bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, etc). Once you decide which room will house your marijuana grow room, make sure to add that notation as well.
NOW THAT YOU HAVE YOUR MAP
[amperes x volts = watts or ampere = watts/volts]
- Make sure that between what you have constantly plugged in and the additional equipment needed for a marijuana grow room, you won't overload your circuits.
- We typically would recommend that you do no more than 75% of the total amperage rating of your circuit with everything plugged in.
- For example, if you are using a 15 amp circuit, then your maximum load should be 11.25 amps and not ever go over. The last thing you want is any breakers tripping when your equipment starts up.
- If you plan to grow a large crop, then we would recommend that you place your grow room in the basement where the circuits or fuse box is located. This will shorten the length of cording needed and allow all of the equipment to run better.
- Smaller crops can even be grown near 220 volt appliances such as a clothes drier or an oven. If you can look through a hydroponic store, you can typically find timer boards that are ready made to be plugged into a 220 volt source with the correct 110 volt outlets.
- If you are looking for compact growing spaces, cabinets and vegetative marijuana room grows can often be used. Extreme care needs to be taken, however, to use different circuits for this type of grow room. Using an extension cord off one circuit and a plug off of another may be what is required to get the equipment set up properly without overloading any circuits.
- Keep in mind that breakers will trip when they are heated by exposure to a current that is higher than what the breaker is rated for, and older houses may not have wiring that can handle the heat of this experience, so keep your circuits under the rating to avoid this potential problem.
- Make sure you check the normal temperature of the plugs you use with the back of your hand when you make electrical additions. If your plug is noticeably warm or even hot to the touch, unplug the appliance or device immediately. You do not want to risk a fire hazard by overloading any of your houses' circuitry.