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# Wiring Baseboard Heater

#1
11-11-03, 06:26 PM
timchrista
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Posts: n/a
Wiring Baseboard Heater

I AM INSTALLING A 240V 1500WATT BASEBOARD HEATER USING A
A DOUBLE POLE WALL MOUNTING THERMOSTAT(DIMPLEX BRAND) I HAVE 200 AMP SERVICE AND A GE POWERMARK GOLD LOAD CENTER TM32FC. MY QUESTIONS ARE WHAT BREAKERS SHOULD I
SINGLE OR DOUBLE POLE? AMPERES? WIRE AWG? YOU HELP IS
GREATLY APPRICIATED

#2
11-11-03, 06:40 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 17,733
Received 1 Upvote on 1 Post
First, you should thoroughly read the manufacturer's instructions for the answers to your questions. It should be covered there somewhere.

All 240-volt circuits in North America require a double-pole breaker. A 1500-watt heater is a very, very small heater to use 240 volts. If this information is correct, the manufacturer will probably specify a 15-amp breaker and 14-gauge wire.

Please use this information only to verify the manufacturer's instructions.

#3
11-11-03, 06:49 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,246
First things first. Please don't type in all uppercase letters, as it is considered yelling.

In order to get 240 volts, you need both halves, or legs, of the circuit. This means a double pole breaker. The double pole breaker will occupy two positions in the circuit breaker panel. Panels are designed so that a double pole breaker will pick up both legs of the circuit. Double pole breakers are also designed so that when the breaker trips it cuts off both legs of the circuit. If you used two single pole breakers then you might not get any voltage (if you got the same leg) and a trip won't necessarily trip both breakers.

The current needed is simple. Use ohms law. P= VI, Power = Voltage times current. This means 1500 Watts = 220 Volts * ? current. Solving for the current yields roughly 6.8 amps. What this says is that you can comfortably use a 20 amp breaker and 12 gauge wire. Since this is a straight 220 volt application, you don't need a neutral, and can use 12/2 with ground.

Let me clarify one point, before someone jumps all over me. When figuring a breaker size, you have to take into account continuous load not exceeding 80 percent of a breaker's rating. This means that our current figure needs to be less than 16 amps to use a 20 amp breaker. Since our 6.8 amps is well below that 16 amp figure we are okay.

Let me also clarify that we could just as easily have gone with a 15 amp breaker, or even a 10 amp breaker and 14 gauge wire. However, I would design with the thought that you can expand the heat if you need to later, without the need to replace the wire or the breaker.

One more point. Always look for the manufacturer's instructions. The manufacturer will usually specify the minimum breaker and wire size needed.

#4
11-11-03, 08:26 PM
timchrista
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Lets just say the instructions leave alot to be desired.They were
designed for someone who doesnt read! I spent an hour trying
to get the answers at menards,checked the manufacturers site
and still got nothing.
Thank You very much for the help