Latest Discussions : Electrical & Lighting


03:07PM | 03/23/00
Member Since: 03/22/00
1 lifetime posts
I routed a 220 volt circuit (2 wires from 2 single pole breakers, that originally fed an old wall mounted electrical heater) using #10 wires into a new panel with 2 new cicuit breakers. I connected the two wires to the power input terminals of the new panel. Since my power source does not have a ground, I connected a ground wire, #10 to a copper rod outside the house and connected the ground wire to the nuetral bar. I installed two new single pole circuit breakers - and run two new 110v circuits by connecting the black wire to the circuit breaker and the ground and white wire to the nuetral bar. When I tested the new circuits, I found that I can draw power for low-wattage use like light bulbs but I could not draw power for high-wattage use like a vacuum cleaner or a 1000-watt halogen light.

What did I do wrong and how can I correct the problem?


03:12PM | 04/02/00
Member Since: 02/18/99
28 lifetime posts
Sounds like when you removed the larger breaker which touches both bus bars to give you 120 + 120, now you are probably only getting 1/2 of 120 even though it shows 120 on a volt meter. You will have to move a old 120v breaker up to a different spot so the bus bar is in contact with all back pins on your new 120 breaker. Remove the new breaker and I bet 1/2 the pins are in contact with the bus bar (the bar running vertical).
They must all me in contact with the vertical bus bar.



06:08AM | 04/09/00
Member Since: 10/24/99
31 lifetime posts
"Electricity is not a hobby"
You probably have a problem with your neutral buss, but you should really have a qualified electrician look at this.


08:37AM | 05/05/00
Member Since: 03/13/00
1674 lifetime posts
I agree with CHOLE4ELECTRIC. Your problem is probably with your neutral. If I read you right, the grounding rod is part of the circuit. I doubt it makes good enough "connection" to carry much current. You might have to get your neutral from another source. Probably should have an electrician do it.


06:54AM | 07/18/00
Member Since: 03/13/00
1674 lifetime posts
Just got the following from the Web after searching on "National Electrical Code". Note that a ground wire should NEVER be used as a current carrier (neutral). ----
The Equipment Grounding Conductors under normal conditions carry NO current. The only time they carry current is under abnormal conditions when an
electrical appliance or piece of electrical equipment is faulty and has become a potential shock or fire hazard. Under a fault condition the grounding conductor that is
connected to the outer shell or sheet metal of the equipment or appliance must be able to provide a very low resistance path back to the source of the power(utility
company's transformer) so that enough current will flow causing a breaker or fuse to open the circuit and automatically disconnect the hazard from the system.
It is NOT the purpose of this equipment grounding system to send current through the ground. Sending equipment fault currents through the earth can be a fatal
misunderstanding of how a grounding system works. For the most part, the only time you intentially send current into the earth is during a lightning strike or line surge
due to a nearby lightning strike.

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