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110 v or 220 v Question

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Forum topic by MarktheWoodButcher posted 05-27-2009 01:16 PM 1286 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MarktheWoodButcher

109 posts in 2762 days


05-27-2009 01:16 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I have recently bought a few used shop machines that are wired for 110 v. operation. While studying the manuals for these machines I see they can be wired for 220 volts. I have available 220 volt outlets. I don’t know much about electricity. Is there some benefit in setting up some of these tools for 220, or is this a six of one half dozen of the other situation?

Thanks

-- Knowledge Is Responsibility


11 replies so far

View daltxguy's profile

daltxguy

1373 posts in 3377 days


#1 posted 05-27-2009 02:02 PM

The ability to switch over is handy for people like me, who brought their tools from the US to NZ where the voltage is 220. I suspect this is why they do it, to address all markets with a single manufactured motor. I was able to switch over some of my tools to run on the local voltage without using a transformer.
Otherwise not much difference. P = VxA, so given the same wattage (P =power expressed as watts), running at a higher voltage (V) means lower current (A=amps). Running at higher voltage has lower losses, so in theory, you could run a slightly smaller wire and be slightly more efficient in your power usage but you probably won’t save building a new coal fired power station by switching over due to the likely short run you are talking about. I wouldn’t bother, personally. Buying the 220v plugs for your outlet would probably cost more than you would ever save. It’s possible that a motor running at 220v might run slightly cooler? Maybe some one else knows better than I do. Even if that’s true, it would depend on which machine you are talking about and how often you use them.

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

7211 posts in 2839 days


#2 posted 05-27-2009 02:35 PM

110v and 220v are supposedly theoretically the same when wired properly, but since you have the 220v line available, you may get better amp flow during peek demands like recovery from bogging.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View MarktheWoodButcher's profile

MarktheWoodButcher

109 posts in 2762 days


#3 posted 05-28-2009 02:01 AM

It sounds like there is not a compelling reason to switch the machines over to 220. So if it’s not broken,,,,,

-- Knowledge Is Responsibility

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

17669 posts in 3139 days


#4 posted 05-28-2009 09:05 AM

A watt of power is a watt of power whether it is 120 or 240. If they are fairly small motors, 2 hp or less, I wouldn’t bother. If you are dimming the lights when you flip the motor switch, changing over will help with the voltage drops you are causing.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

7211 posts in 2839 days


#5 posted 05-28-2009 06:21 PM

Mark – Every circuit and situation is different, but I did notice improved performance from my 1-3/4hp hybrid saw when I switched over….faster startups, and faster recovery, less lugging, etc. 220v is less prone to voltage drop during high amperage demands. You’ve got the 220v lines available, and you just might see a difference if you try it….no harm done anyway. I’ve never bothered for things like my 3/4hp DP, 3/4hp BS, or 1hp jointer.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View sIKE's profile

sIKE

1271 posts in 3217 days


#6 posted 05-28-2009 07:23 PM

If you switched you saw to the 220V circuit that would free up the 110V circuit for other purposes.

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View Big_Bob's profile

Big_Bob

173 posts in 3172 days


#7 posted 05-28-2009 08:36 PM

Change them to 240 v.
Motors run more efficiently on 240v. A 2hp motor that runs on 20 amps @120v when split to run on 240v will use only 10 amps on each leg of the circuit. Therefore, the motor runs cooler and more efficiently.

-- Bob Clark, Tool Collector and Sawdust Maker

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

17669 posts in 3139 days


#8 posted 05-28-2009 10:06 PM

You hit the nail on the head BigBob, I should have said 1 hp and smaller. 1 hp draws 16 amps full load curent which is a max load for a normal 120 volt circuit. Sq D motor calculator shows 1.5 hp 20 amps/120 or 10/240 & 2 hp 24 amps/ 120 or 12/240. These figues allow the maximum current value for sizing circuits. Most motors draw slightly less.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Brian024's profile

Brian024

358 posts in 2863 days


#9 posted 05-28-2009 10:35 PM

Exactly what Bob said, your tools will run more efficient and draw less current.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

17669 posts in 3139 days


#10 posted 05-28-2009 10:57 PM

Yes, but don’t confuse people into thinking they use less power. They cost to run is virtually the same.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2717 posts in 2749 days


#11 posted 05-29-2009 11:00 PM

I always wire mine 240 given the option. Years ago I had a 2 HP compressor that came wired 120 I had a lot of trouble with it not restarting until I changed it to 240. No more trouble after that. I agree with Big_Bob

-- http://shepherdtoolandsupply.com/

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