Saunacore heater connection

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Old 03-17-19, 09:52 PM
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Question Saunacore heater connection

Hi folks,
Im looking to hook up a new heater I have for the sauna I just built. I found this old thread that talks about exactly this heater connection, including the same control panel and the contactor included (I still cant believe that the contactor isn’t already connected at the sauna btw, never seen that before with any appliance...) In any case, the thread is really helpful, but I’m still confused how do I connect the high limit switch between the contactor and the panel. The H1/H2 on/off signal connections (to the sides of the contactor) make sense, but the L1/L2 for the high limit switch do not... the diagram provided by the OP in the original thread still applies, but there was some additional information provided with the unit that doesn’t make sense. Such as stating that the high limit switch wiring should be on its one circuit and also that it’s should be on 14/2 wiring, running 240v/1amp control signal only. Low amp 240v control signal actually would make sense on running 14/2, but doesn’t make sense on how the diagram in on the original thread having that connected at the contactor, as it’s feeding off the main 240v/30amp supply lugs?? Unless I’m totally misunderstand this.
In any case, here’s the link to the old thread, I’m gonna put the pics on the additional info I have below.
Any help would be appreciated!

the original thread on this —> https://www.doityourself.com/forum/e...na-heater.html
 

Last edited by Azmp1; 03-17-19 at 10:21 PM.
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Old 03-17-19, 10:14 PM
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See below. First page is that additional into that was included by the vendor. The second is the same page from where OP in the original thread posted the diagram, but note where it says, the contactor must be installed outside of the heater... thatís strange as I would expect it to be installed inside the appliance.
 
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Old 03-17-19, 10:27 PM
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That thread took a lot of my time to complete. I just re-read it. All the information is there. If you have a part you don't know how to wire..... post a picture of it. The high limit sensor just interrupts the control power to the contactor.

How-to-insert-pictures
 
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Old 03-17-19, 10:38 PM
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Thank you for the responding and that thread is certainly very helpful, what I don’t understand is the wiring between the contactor and the high limit switch... I’ll see if I can make a pic tomorrow of what I’m talking about.
Btw, have you ever heard from the person in the original thread if everything worked out? The thread just ended without his feedback...
 
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Old 03-18-19, 09:36 AM
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Pete, here is the what I'm talking about. What I don't understand is where L1/L2 (high limit connections) are getting connected at the contactor? Could you draw it please on this picture? If im looking at the diagram, it looks like its also getting connected to the main (copper) lugs of the contactor and not to the sliver control lugs... but how would that make L1/L2 a 1amp connection, able to run on 14 ga wire, if its feeding off the 240/40amp line?? Thats where im confused...
 
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Old 03-18-19, 10:04 AM
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This diagram is the entire unit. The 240vac is your power into the contactor and also supplies the control thru those two 1A fuses. The safety stat is just a two wire over heat protector that breaks one line to the contactor.

 
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Old 03-18-19, 10:15 AM
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So its ok for the feed to high limit switch to be 240vac coming off there main feed? But the main feed is 40amp, not 1amp...? The second paper I have that i posted above is calling for that line to be 14/2... how can it be?

what am I missing here... sorry to be dense...
 
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Old 03-18-19, 10:26 AM
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In that instance..... the feed is 40A to the contactor. The 2) one amp fuses protect the control circuit at 1A. The OP in that other thread had a 240v coil in his contactor. Does your also have a 240v coil ? I can't read the info you posted. Too small for definition. Possibly you have a 120v coil contactor. Then the controller would also be 120v and require a separate circuit.
 
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Old 03-18-19, 10:35 AM
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Nope its 240 exactly as the OP. Same specs on the heater, 7.5kw, same control panel, same contactor. Apologies, I did not realize those pics didn't come through good, let me repost.That paper to me looks contradictory to the main diagram...

 
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Old 03-18-19, 10:38 AM
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oh crap... the image is coming through the same again. let me see If I can just upload it somewhere and link to it.

Here you go
https://share.icloud.com/photos/0Qu2...zRiegWoNh5Rvvg
 
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Old 03-18-19, 10:53 AM
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And here is the copy of the page with the original diagram (bottom). But also see where it says (on the left) that the contactor must be outside of the unit...

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0Lq8...t_iR0BGuqoepbw
 
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Old 03-18-19, 06:07 PM
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Ok.... so put the contactor in the metal box like they suggest. An example of a box
You could also use a larger box. Places like depot and lowes carry various sizes.
You could use plastic too.

Those instructions are written by an idiot. They are giving you wires sizes and types of wire based on trade lingo. If you are using flex conduit..... you would not be using 14-2 RX cable. You would be using #14THWN/THHN wire which is high heat/water proof single conductor wire. They do not show adding fuses between the 40A L1 and L2 connections. That's my idea. That remote module must be protected.

The main power goes to the junction box. This could be 8/2 NM-b cable. Use a piece of 1/2" flexible conduit to connect the 3 gang controller box to the contactor junction box. There will be five #14 wires in this conduit. L1, L2, H1, H2 and green/ground. Use another piece of 3/4" flexible conduit to connect the heating element to the contactor box. This will have two #8 wires, one #10 green/ground wire and two #14 wires for the overheat protector..
 
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Old 03-18-19, 09:08 PM
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This makes sense - thank you Pete.
So just to double check this is how everything will be connected at the contactor? All control wiring being #14.
im curious, initially when you were calling for the connector to be inside the heater, is that a code requirement? This heater is from Canada and I donít want to violet any NEC requirements, just because they said to located outside, ive never seen it in any appliance or HVAC to be located outside... Like you said, not very well written instructions.

And lastly, is this a right fuse holder to use?
 
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Old 03-18-19, 09:32 PM
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That fuseholder should be ok. Bussman..... good stuff..... pricey fuses. Make sure the fuses are rated for at least 240v.

I didn't know where the contactor was supposed to go. I don't remember if I knew in the other thread. Logic would say it belongs inside the heater enclosure. They should be selling a complete kit with the contactor already installed inside a box. You supply power to it...... a line to the heater and a line to the control. You shouldn't have to be messing around and getting fuses. Them not supplying fuses is actually a major liability on their part. Protecting that electronic controller at 40A is catastrophe waiting to happen.
 
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Old 03-18-19, 09:45 PM
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I couldn’t agree more. For the matter effect I’m planning to call them and give them a piece of my mind. Already called the sauna supply company that sold me this heater as part of the kit and complained. They said it’s the best heater they sell and they never had anyone complain... right.
By the way these units aren’t UL certified, it only “conforms with UL standard” which may explain the way they come. If I knew this I wouldn’t have bought it...

in any case thank you very much for your help!
 
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Old 03-19-19, 01:57 PM
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Pete, I have another question. I'm assuming I must ground the control panel since its 120vac. But there's no ground wire, lug or a terminal on the panel. However, their diagram is clearly showing ground going into the panel. So I figured the metal box will need to be grounded, but I still don't see how the panel itself is grounded. The screws points on the panel to box do not provide ground as far as I can tell... Any ideas?
 
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Old 03-19-19, 06:48 PM
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You need to ground the three gang box that the control goes in.
If it requires a ground it will get it thru the mounting screws.
 
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Old 03-20-19, 10:59 AM
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Oh yes the box will be grounded. I just don’t see how it’s getting groun through the mounting screwes as there’s no metal around the mounting holes..
 
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Old 03-20-19, 06:47 PM
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If it doesn't have exposed metal parts....... then it doesn't need to be grounded.
 
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Old 03-20-19, 09:34 PM
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Understood. Would you mind explaining something else to me I still don’t get i with this?
I don’t understand the usage of a 1 amp fuse... the line it’s going to be in line on is. 40 amp line. So how can a 1amp fuse work?
 
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Old 03-21-19, 09:27 PM
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No problem.

You have an electronic control that runs on 240v. It requires very little current (well under 1A). If it should internally short and be connected directly to the 40A circuit..... there could be an explosion as the control vaporizes. The fuses also protect the smaller wiring in case of a short.

If you connected your #14 control wiring directly to the 40A circuit and it shorted to ground... you could get quite a bang and have a possible fire. A circuit fused at 40A requires #8 wiring. So without the protection fuses..... you'd need to use all #8 wiring.
 
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Old 03-22-19, 07:08 PM
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That’s what I don’t understand.. I’m sorry if I’m being dense here.. you say:

”if it should internally short and be connected directly to the 40 amp circuit... there would be an explosion as the control evaporates”

but it is connected directly to the 40 amp circuit isn’t it? Isn’t the crimp that the #14 wire is connected to, that’s going to the hl switch through the 1 amp fuse is conncted to the same terminal the #8 wire is? And that #8 wire is carryimg 40amp?
 
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Old 03-22-19, 08:09 PM
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The two 1A fuseholders get connected as close as possible to the source..... the contactor.
 
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Old 03-22-19, 09:53 PM
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How does change the amperage?
 
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Old 03-22-19, 09:58 PM
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Refer to the diagram. The 240v enters the contactor on the L1 and L2 side using #8 wiring protected at 40A. Two fuseholders with 1A fuses are also connected to the L1 and L2 terminals. Everything after the two fuses is protected at 1A...... since it passes thru 1A fuses.

BTW.... if you can't find 1A fuses you could use 2A or 3A. I wouldn't go much larger than 3A.
 
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Old 03-22-19, 10:07 PM
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Yes, but isn’t the 240v is entering the contactor on L1 or L2 at 40 amps? So, how come the 1amp fuses aren’t blowing the moment 40 amps are hitting them? That’s what I don’t get. The fuse supposed to blow once the current exceeds its rating, right? Unless, I’m totally misunderstanding how his works...
 
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Old 03-23-19, 01:42 AM
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The fuse supposed to blow once the current exceeds its rating, right?
Yes.

The 1A fuses won't blow unless the current that goes thru them exceeds 1A. The combined load of the electronic control and the contactor coil is well below 1A. The coil pulls the contactor in. The actual contactor is what handle the 40A switching to the heating element. The contactor's job is to switch high current with a very small coil current.

You might consider getting some help with this project.
 
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Old 03-23-19, 12:16 PM
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Yep. I’m good now. All makes perfect sense. Where I was drawing the blank is thinking that there’s alway a constant current of 40 amp going thru L1 and L2 where as it’s only going to be as much as the appliance need to draw. On the side of the contactor where L1 and L2 will also go to fuses it will never draw more than one 1amp and if will the fuse will blow. Got it. Took me a minute there...
thank you very much for patiently explain this to me.

I will I’ll post the completed pics, if could just look over one more time if you don’t mind.
 

Last edited by Azmp1; 03-23-19 at 02:48 PM.
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Old 03-24-19, 07:40 PM
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All done (just need to do the ground). Any concerns?
 
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Old 03-24-19, 08:15 PM
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Looks good.

I see a black wire going from the L1 fuseholder down with the heater lines.
I don't see it coming back. I assume that's for the overheat sensor ?
 
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Old 03-25-19, 06:47 PM
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You’re correct, the black on the left is the fused side of hl switch wiring, the other side of it is direct line from the control to the heater, so it was sitting behind the box when I took this picture. Since then I have routed it through the box into the same flex going to the heater, even though it’s not going into anything in the box, just running through.

Thank you very much for your help Pete!
 
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Old 05-05-19, 01:03 PM
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So I have the sauna finished and everything hooked up. The good news is everything works and the sauna gets nice and hot )). However, thereís an issue. The contractor is humming, or buzzing fairly loudly, even though everything works. Pretty sure thatís an issue. Iím about to go check the control voltage which I read could be an issue if out of range. Any other ideas, before I go replacing the contractor?

the pic of is of the final setup of the contractor enclosure.

thsnks!
 
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Old 05-05-19, 01:36 PM
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Noisy contactors is not an electrical issue. Some are just noisy.

VERY NICE job there...... well done. I enlarged the pic on my screen and everything looks correct.
 
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Old 05-05-19, 01:38 PM
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Ok so I think I see the issue. The voltage coming in on the control lines to the sides of the contractor Is 240v.... any idea why this is happening? I think everything is ran correctly. I’m pretty sure I have the control panel wired right as well...
 
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Old 05-05-19, 01:44 PM
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Everything looks to be wired correctly. That contactor has a 240v coil...... correct ?
The only thing you can do is to replace the contactor. If you bought it new.... tell them it's noisy.
 
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Old 05-05-19, 07:01 PM
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Yes itís a 240v contactor. Hereís the pic... and everything does work exactly as intended, just humms. Iíve tested voltage on all inputs and outputs and everything looks right. One thing I canít check is the amperage as my amp meter is broken. But the breaker (40 amp) isnít tripping so Iím assuming thereís no overload there.
 
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Old 05-06-19, 01:52 PM
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Those contactors hum/buzz when the solenoid part is not tight. You could get an identical one and it could be quiet. The contactors we use in A/C condensers are the same way.

The buzz is not affected by the amount of current draw.
 
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Old 05-13-19, 05:39 AM
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Pete, I had an electrician come out and take a look and that’s what he told me as well. Said, this is normal and I have no issue and the reason you don’t hear them hum/buzz in the a/c because of the usual a/c noise, but here it’s very quiet. Recommended I either move the box with the contactor further into the space it’s in away from the sauna wall, or also to try and see if a larger contactor maybe 50 or 60 amp...
 
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Old 05-13-19, 11:32 AM
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Not necessarily a larger contactor...... just a different one.

You could have two brand new identical contactors there.
After installation one could be 100% quiet and one could have a hum or buzz.
 
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