Originally Posted by 4DHD
All breakers are marked as to what they are. As for the wire used in the LR, I don't know why it would be only 14ga. Unless its a really old house.
All the houses I ever worked on all had 12ga for the outlets. 14ga was only used on circuits that were ceiling lights only.
My last house I changed out one or two breakers that were15 amps with 20 amps. Never had a problem.
I guess it depends on where you live and what code required at the time the house was built. I'm not sure what you consider a "really old house", but my house was built in 1991 and has 14g wire for most circuits/outlets in the house. So in my case I would have to have new wire run if I wanted to upgrade to 20 amp breakers.
However, I've never had a problem with the existing 15 amp breakers, so I'm not inclined to pursue such an upgrade. BTW, I actually tested the peak current draw of my setup which includes 60" plasma, Parasound 5250 amp driving 5 channels, and a 500 watt powered sub along with a pre/pro and various source gear. Turning everything on including all lights on that circuit (which I never do) and playing a battle scene from Lord of the Rings cranked up to reference level (again, which I don't normally do), the peak amp draw was less than 5 amps.
That said, I want to stress how important it is to use the proper gauge wire if changing breakers to a higher amp rating. Put a 20 amp breaker on wire of insufficient gauge and you risk burning your house down!