Air Conditioner Wiring Questions


Old 06-28-10, 09:32 PM
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Air Conditioner Wiring Questions

I'm installing a new air conditioner - through wall unit. Circuit breaker rating is: 250V-15A. Unit is rated at 230 volts. The existing air conditioner I'm replacing is rated at 115 volts. Here is what I'm uncertain of:

1) The existing wire in place is 12-2. Is that fine to leave in place or does it need to be changed since the new unit is at 230 volts?

2) As for a new circuit breaker what is recommended? Will a 15 Amp One Pole, 120/240 VAC, suffice?

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Old 06-28-10, 09:54 PM
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Is the existing outlet a dedicated circuit (absolutely nothing else on it)? Is it wired with 12-2 all the way to from end to end? If so, yes you can convert it to a 240. You will have to color the white wire red and install an outlet like this (can be used for either 15 or 20A units thanks to the T shaped slot on the left):

At the breaker box, install a two pole, 20A, 240v breaker (it will take up two spaces and have the two handles tied together - NOT two handles in the space of one breaker). Connect the black wire of the 12-2 to one of the breaker terminals. Find the white wire of that 12-2 and remove it from the neutral busbar (I CAN'T STRESS ENOUGH HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE CORRECT WHITE WIRE!!). Color it red and connect it to the second breaker terminal (you can extend it with a piece of red 12ga and a wirenut if you need to). Button up the panel and the outlet and you're done.
Old 06-29-10, 08:09 AM
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Thanks JerseyMatt. Yes, the existing outlet is a dedicated circuit. Nothing else on it and wired 12-2 all the way from end to end. The AC calls for a NEMA # 6-15P plug face. WIll the outlet you recommend still do the trick? Thanks again... your information is VERY helpful!

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