220V Air Compressor circuit

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  #1  
Old 01-14-12, 03:42 PM
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220V Air Compressor circuit

I recently acquired a (free!) 220V 15A air compressor. Problem is, I have no 220V in the garage. In the electrical panel, there are two 15A breakers tied together to service a 220V electric baseboard heater that I removed a few months ago. Since the heater is gone and that circuit is not being utilized, I would like to repurpose that circuit for the compressor. The 220V heater was installed with 14/2 wire. With a 30ft run, can I use the 14/2 for the compressor, or do I need to start over with something heavier (12/2?, 10/2?) from the panel? Any guidance would be appreciated. Thanks!
 
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Old 01-14-12, 04:02 PM
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You can use the 14/2, with a 6-15 receptacle.
 
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Old 01-14-12, 04:25 PM
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If the garage is detached and already has power you can't run another source of power to it. However if it is attached no problem.

Tech note: It is doubtful you have 220 volts. More likely you have 240 volts and the compressor is rated for 230-240 nominal voltage.
 
  #4  
Old 01-14-12, 05:45 PM
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If the distance between the proposed air comp. Location is just 30 ft. It should not be a problem. Make sure the multi-conductor cable contains an equipment ground & you tie it to the metal non-current carrying parts of the air comp. This will bond your a.c. To your electric systems grounding system. (personal safety) if you can swap the #14 wire to #12 would be better,but not necessary. If you have access to an amp probe,hook your a.c. Up properly & take amperage & voltage readings until the a.c. Turns off by the pressure switch. #14 wire is good for 20 amps but n.e.c. Makes you fuse it @ 15 amps for dwellings.you are right on the fence with the 15 amps. If it does draw more than 15 amps you need to replace your wire w/#12. The n.e.c. Allows you to size your wire to 125% of motor nameplate current again #14 cu. Is good for 20 amps. Make sure your motor is thermaly protected or you will hafta use motor overloads if you want to stay within code.hopefully your a.c. Came with a combination starter/o.l. You need to swap that breaker out to a 20 amp 2-pole the n.e.c. Allows this on motor loads ! Electrical equipment designed & built in the u.s. Is made to operate on + or - 10% of nameplate rating. Just make sure you put in a disconnecting means within sight of a.c. Fatbuoy
 
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Old 01-14-12, 07:22 PM
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If the distance between the proposed air comp. Location is just 30 ft. It should not be a problem. Make sure the multi-conductor cable contains an equipment ground & you tie it to the metal non-current carrying parts of the air comp.
But if it is a detached garage and already has power he is probably going to abandon existing power to garage and install a new supply and subpanel
 
  #6  
Old 01-15-12, 06:20 AM
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Thanks for the input everyone. This is helpful. The garage is attached so I'm planning on using the house panel. Sounds like I shouldn't have an issue repurposing that 14ga circuit for the air compressor, but I agree with fatbuoy that it is right on the edge.
 
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