HOW MANY GAMES ON A SINGLE CIRCUIT BREAKER?
By now you have probably heard that commercial arcades put 6 pinball machines on each 20A circuit.
How did they come up with that formula?
The National Electric Code wants circuit breakers to see 80% of their rated load. So for a 20A breaker, the ideal number is 16 amps.
Most pinball machines draw about 1.6 to 2 amps peak.
Some pinball machines with a ton of lamps may even draw 2.4 amps.
If you take any random 6 pinball machines at an arcade and measure their amperage draw at the breaker panel, you see that each breaker is seeing ~13 amps. Well under our 16 amp goal.
In your home, where you don't have to worry about employees moving games around and messing up your breaker loads, if you measured a 13 amp draw on a circuit, you could safely add one additional game and still be under your 16 amp target.