Removed baseboard heater - make into a plugend?

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  #1  
Old 10-09-00, 08:49 PM
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I have removed a baseboard heater and the exposed wires are bigger than the wires running to the regular outlets. I would like to use the wires that went to the baseboard heater and put them into an outlet, one with 4 plugs. I cannot replace the wire from the breaker as the same pole operates 2 other baseboard heaters which I will not remove. Thanks for your help.
 
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  #2  
Old 10-10-00, 11:07 AM
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I don't really have enough information, but I'm willing to bet that you have a 220 volt circuit, and I would definitely NOT put receptacles on it if this is the case. Easy way to tell, if you don't have a voltage tester is (no, not touch the wires to your tongue!), look at the breaker. It should be a double-wide, or two-pole type. What color are the wires? Were they "pigtailed" together in a wire nut with a short wires coming from the wire nut to the heater? I assume you have a wall box there, although sometimes these heaters have a piece of romex poking out of the wall and going directly into the appliance. I would recommend that you carefully cap each wire with a wirenut and electrical tape around the base of the wire nut onto the wire, carefully bend them back into the wall box and install a blank wall plate. I'd like to hear back from you, too. You can e-mail me directly using the button above on my reply if you like.

JH
 
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Old 10-10-00, 03:49 PM
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I agree with Juicehead. You most likely can not use this wire because you shold find the white wire to be an ungrounded conductor. This means you have 120 volts to ground on both the black and the white. You do not have a white grounded leg that is insulated to carry the current back to the panel. If you tried to switch over to 120 volt then you would mess up you existing heaters that are expecting 220 volts between the black and white wires. Baseboard heaters do not use a grounded leg or neutral. Receptacles do use a grounded leg or neutral. The wire you have is not compatable for use on a receptacle without using the bare as a current carrying conductor which is not allowed by the NEC

Good Luck

Wg
 
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Old 10-10-00, 05:42 PM
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I checked and these wires go to what I believe you call a two-pole type or a double-wide. It is 2 of those things that move together in the breaker box. On each is written the number 40. These also operate the other 2 heaters in this building. The colors of the wires in the box where I removed the baseboard heater are red, white, black, and bare (ground). I do not want to mess up the other baseboard heaters so I think Iíll just cap this off if I canít make this into 4 plugends (2 receptacles). What kinds of things take this much electricity to run besides a baseboard heater? I have placed a bookcase in front of this (cutting a hole in the bookcase back to access what I hoped to be a plugend) wanting to plug in a stereo, TV, and VCR player.

So, Iíll ask another question Ė how easy is it to disconnect this wire from the double pole and insert a regular wire for a plugend and attach it to one of the other circuits? Is that time consuming if Iíd call an electrician? I guess they probably staple these wires to the studs so he couldnít just pull one out while pulling another through? I don't want to go through the hassle of exposing the studs, etc.

Thanks again for your help.
 
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Old 10-11-00, 05:25 AM
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Wait! All is not lost here. If you've got 3-wire w/gnd (black, red, white, bare) then it should be possible to get 110 out of this. Wgoodrich will certainly tell you about the code issues. I think there may be some. But, the black to white, or red to white will give you regular 110 provided you have connected the wires together at the thermostat for this room. I am assuming that the heater had a room thermostat. If it had one directly on the baseboard heater itself, then you may be all set except for the aforementioned code issues.
 
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Old 10-11-00, 09:31 AM
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This baseboard heater I removed had the thermostat directly on it, the other 2 heaters in this building are operated from a thermostat on the wall. This removed heater was in the opposite direction from the other 2 heaters. So, it looks like I can proceed to make this into a 110 even though this wire is coming off the same double pole as the other 2 heaters? Thanks for your help!
 
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Old 10-11-00, 08:41 PM
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NO NO NO ! Don't do it! YOu said that that breaker is a 40 amp breaker on 10 ga. wire. The receptacle can only have a 20 amp breaker protecting that receptacle. The other heaters would never hold on a 20 amp breaker. You would be over rating those receptacles and asking to burn down you house.

If you want a receptacle there then just go to the nearest receptacle in that room and run a 12/2 romex from that existing receptacle to where you want to install the new 4 gang receptacle, or two duplex receptacels. This will give you plenty of power to run your electronic equipment and leave that heater run alone. It is way to big to serve any 120 volt 20 amp receptacles. I don't remember you stating that you had a black, red, white, and bare wire going to those baseboard heaters. I understand that you only have a black and white and bare. This means that you have no grounded leg but you do have 120 volts to ground on the black and 120 volts to ground on the white. NO NEUTRAL IS PRESENT IN THIS HEATER CIRCUIT AS FAR AS I CAN TRANSLATE WHAT YOU HAVE.

Good Luck and be safe

Wg
 
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Old 10-11-00, 08:47 PM
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Sorry I went back and looked for your colors and you do have a grounded leg as far as I can tell and the previous reply is right that you should be able to get 120 volt with the neutral if you have red black and white and bare. I still say NO NO NO DON'T DO IT BECAUSE YOU HAVE THIS CIRCUIT PROTECTED BY A 40 AMP BREAKER NOT THE REQUIRED 20 AMP BREAKER REQUIRED FOR A RECEPTACLE. Take you power from a nearby receptacle for you new added receptacle and wire nut off the heater circuit because it is too big in amp protection for a receptacle.

Wg
 
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Old 10-12-00, 08:59 AM
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by wgoodrich:
Sorry I went back and looked for your colors and you do have a grounded leg as far as I can tell and the previous reply is right that you should be able to get 120 volt with the neutral if you have red black and white and bare. I still say NO NO NO DON'T DO IT BECAUSE YOU HAVE THIS CIRCUIT PROTECTED BY A 40 AMP BREAKER NOT THE REQUIRED 20 AMP BREAKER REQUIRED FOR A RECEPTACLE. Take you power from a nearby receptacle for you new added receptacle and wire nut off the heater circuit because it is too big in amp protection for a receptacle.

Wg
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Wgoodrich, let me ask you about this. I will certainly defer to you on code issues as you are clearly more current than I am, and I am not a professional electrician. I did study the code 30 years ago, and I try to keep up on the major changes. With that said, in the situation above, let me ask you, is there a code issue with the current rating of the outlets? I see a problem with 40 amp breakers protecting 10 ga. wire in a 110 circuit. But just because the wiring can handle more than 20 amps, doesn't mean anything anyone would plug in to a regular 110 outlet could normally draw that much.

This is just for my curiosity here, I'm not trying to start an argument. I always thought the code was concerned with the wire gage more than the rating of the outlet. Clearly the outlet has to be rated for any load it might carry.
 
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Old 10-12-00, 05:03 PM
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hello DJH,
ranck has a valid point here according to the code #10 wire can only be procted by a 30 amp max breaker except on a motor load, i also over looked this untill ranck pointed this out. this circuit shuld be wired in #8 since it is on a 40 amp breaker, my gess is some 1 chainged the 30 out 2 a 40 whin a 3rd heater was added. since u removed 1 heater i recomend u chaing the existing 40 amp 2 pole breaker out with a 30 amp 2 pole. this is an easy chaing all u need to do uis follow these steps
1. get 30 amp 2 pole that fits your panel
2. turn off main breaker( lugs on main will still be hot do not touch)
3. remove panel cover
4. remove wires from existing breaker
5. remove existing breaker
6. install new breaker(witrh handel in off position)
7. connect wires to new breaker
8. replace panel cover
9. turn main breaker back on
10. turn on new breaker
 
  #11  
Old 10-14-00, 07:24 AM
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The answer to the question why you are not allowed a 30 or 40 amp circuit to feed a 15 or 20 amp receptacle is best answered by providing the code section involved. Please see below the 15 or 20 amp recetacles are limited to be fed with 20 amps maximum unless you install a special rated receptacle rated for the higher amps such as range plugs or dryer plugs. No offense taken we are after knowledge and I am quite free at saying that I have eaten crow many times and thanked the one that fed it to me showing that I was wrong. How else can I learn? I have been considered an electrical guru for thirty years and can't count the number of times the apprentice electrician showed me to be wrong, and we all liked it because we learned something. When a person thinks he knows all about electricity he doesn't realize the changes in the industry made just the day before. Keep up the good replies as we talk we also help others as we question each other. That if our goal and I think we all do a good job at it. Many are much better off for having read this forum, even if none of us are perfect especially including me.


210-21

2. Where connected to a branch circuit supplying two or more receptacles or outlets, a receptacle shall not supply a total cord- and plug-connected load in excess of the maximum specified in Table 210-21(b)(2).
Table 210-21(b)(2). Maximum Cord- and Plug-Connected Load to Receptacle

Circuit Rating (Amperes) Receptacle Rating (Amperes) Maximum Load (Amperes)
15 or 20 15 12
20 20 16
30 30 24

Sparky

The way I understand the situation, I don't think that he can reduce the breaker size because he is still running 240 volt heat on that circuit. I am not sure how much load he reduced in removing the heater of several on that circuit.

If any disagree with above, speak up, I may not be understanding the situation right. Won't be the first time I didn't catch something!

Wg
 
  #12  
Old 10-14-00, 07:32 AM
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Sorry wrong chart in previous reply

Table 210-21(b)(3). Receptacle Ratings for Various Size Circuits

Circuit Rating
(Amperes) Receptacle Rating
(Amperes)
15 Not over 15
20 15 or 20
30 30
40 40 or 50
50 50

Maybe next time I will read my reply before I stick my foot in my mouth.

Good Luck

Wg
 
  #13  
Old 10-15-00, 05:34 AM
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even though you could possibly some how hook 120 volt outlets onto the present wiring I really caution aganist it.Have just finished rewirng some stuff that was on adouble pole breaker the neutral was lost and the voltage went up to 180 volts on the 120 side and you guessed it everything that was plugged in burned up. Also you are getting into what I call amulti wire circuit and to me they are one of the most dangerous things that THE NEC allows so cap uour wires and go another route
 
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