220 Volt Source?

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Old 03-13-11, 04:13 PM
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220 Volt Source?

In a few months I will be moving to a home that was built in the 60's. In the dining room of the house, there is an hole (cut out like a receptacle/switch) that a live 220v cable is sitting in. I was told that there was once an A/C that was used. Because the house now has central heat and air, the A/C was removed and the hole left open.

With the help of a friend, we went through every fuse in the fuse box and none of them turned off the power to the 220v wire. Only when I switched off the main did the wire lose power.

Do any of you have an idea where the power could be coming from? Also, do I just cap it off with wire nuts like I would any other circuit?

Thanks for your help,
James
 
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Old 03-13-11, 04:24 PM
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Well...no Pro...but it sounds like they tapped the buss right after the main. Seems like back in the day they didn't have as many 240V appliances or maybe they had gas for everything and didn't get a panel that supported 240 breakers? Not that I even know if those exist...but it's obvious they tied into both legs after the main somehow.

I'd get the meter pulled, and find out whats going on. I say pull the meter because even if you throw the breaker, you don't know what you'll find. A good electrician could probably fix in in 5 min while the power company crew has a smoke.

Ohh....don't cap it...cause no matter what..it's illegal.. and should be fixed. If for no other reason than to simplify the sale later.
 
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Old 03-13-11, 04:24 PM
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we went through every fuse in the fuse box and none of them turned off the power to the 220v wire.
If it is really a fuse box you would have to unscrew or pull two fuses to totally kill the circuit. If "fuse box" was a typo and you have a breaker box it would most likely be a 240v breaker. That would usually be a breaker with two handles tied together. Most likely it would say 15 or 20 on the end of the handle.

How did you determine the line was hot? If you used a non-contact tester then you may have gotten a false positive. You need to use a test light or multimeter or solenoid tester.
 
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Old 03-13-11, 04:24 PM
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If it is 220v then it would not be a twist out fuse. It would be one of the fuse pullouts. Looking in the fuse box you will see some handles pull out from the panel and it will come out and will disconnect the power from the circuit. One of them should kill the circuit.

Also, do I just cap it off with wire nuts like I would any other circuit?
You could just cap them off or you could convert it to a usable 120v receptacle. Given the location, it might be a good location for a dedicated circuit.

Wow! That is impressive! Gunguy, Ray and myself all posted at the same time!
 
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Old 03-13-11, 06:18 PM
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Only when I switched off the main did the wire lose power.
Most fuse boxes back then didn't have a main, they had a subfeed (lighting) main pullout on top left for lighting/receptacle circuits and a range main pullout on top right. Gas ranges were popular back then so many times the range main was used for other applliances, such as a large window a-c, water heater or even a subpanel. Window a-c units weren't very efficient back then, most needed 30 amp circuits. I would guess you'll find this old a-c circuit connected either to the range main or the two non-fused bus taps at the bottom. There could even be a fusible switch connected from those bus taps.
 
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Old 03-13-11, 08:33 PM
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Sorry I wasn't more clear.

If it is really a fuse box you would have to unscrew or pull two fuses to totally kill the circuit.
It is a fuse box. So you think It could be tied to 2 separate fuses, which both must be pulled.?

How did you determine the line was hot?
I used a Greenlee circuit tester.

If it is 220v then it would not be a twist out fuse. It would be one of the fuse pullouts.
I tried the fuses and the fuse pullouts. There was a pullout fuse that was labeled A/C, but perhaps my friend messed up. I was the one pulled the fuses, and my friend was testing the circuit. The fuse panel has the Main pullout located at the top center. There are 4 smaller pullouts on the left, and about 20 fuses located on the right side of the panel.

Thanks for all the help,
James
 
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Old 03-13-11, 09:51 PM
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The tester you used is not an accurate way to determine if a outlet is definitely hot. It may be showing an induced voltage from another circuit. Use a multimeter or test light. After you get a reliable tester pull the one marked AC and test between the black and white (or red and black or black and black).
 
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Old 03-14-11, 04:54 AM
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I suspect that Vic might be correct and the wires might have been terminated improperly in with other wires due to a lack of space in the box.
 
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