240 electric baseboard heater wiring


Old 04-21-08, 01:30 AM
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240 electric baseboard heater wiring

Ive wired in the baseboards and all is in order... except that they dont work. after checking the wireing and making sure that I have 110 on each hot line, an electrician has told me that my problem lies in my panel. He suggested that because most panels are two cycle (two phase ?) and that baseboard heaters need 2cycle, to fix my problem I should move my 30amp 2 pole breaker up a half position in my panel. the problem is that I have an old panel and al the breakers come in sets of two so I cant move it up half a slot unless I find two single breakers somewhere. Can anyone tell me if this is right ?
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Old 04-21-08, 09:03 AM
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Feasible....yes....whether it is right or not depends. AN educated guess here is your panel is an OLD Federal pacific?

You Have three wires..two hots and a ground.

You have 110 volts on each hot wire to ground.......

What do you have across both hot wires?....It should be 220.
Old 04-21-08, 09:30 AM
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Most electric baseboards require only 240v (not 240/120) which means you generally wire them with 2 conductor wire. (black/black, or more likely black/white with the white remarked as black with some electrical tape). (and of course a ground for safety). A Neutral is not required.

When testing the wire at either the breaker or the baseboard location, you should get 120v from hot to ground, but 240v from hot to hot. If you get 0v from hot to hot, it means that they are not connected to the two different phases in the panel, instead they are connected to the same phase.

As the electrician stated, the breaker likely needs to go up or down half a position. Newer breaker panels are designed to eliminate the possibility of something like this happening, but some older panels have this problem. If you give the make/model of your panel or provide a picture, someone familiar with these panels can certainly help.
Old 04-21-08, 09:41 AM
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Please don't take this wrong but the things you wrote in your first post seem to indicate a lack of basic knowledge. Just to be sure your wiring is safe What size wire did you use? What size breaker? What is the wattage of the heaters?

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