50Hz Voltage Question

fifty60

Senior Member
In Europe, and most other 50Hz countries, 220-240V is generally obtained between a line conductor and neutral conductor. I know this is the case for cord connected equipment that operates off of 220-240V 50Hz.

Does the same hold true for permenant connections? Or is it possible here that they would derive the voltage from two line conductors? By permanent connection I mean not using a standard plug, but connected directly to a wall mounted disconnect of some kind.
 

Besoeker

Senior Member
In Europe, and most other 50Hz countries, 220-240V is generally obtained between a line conductor and neutral conductor. I know this is the case for cord connected equipment that operates off of 220-240V 50Hz.

Does the same hold true for permenant connections? Or is it possible here that they would derive the voltage from two line conductors? By permanent connection I mean not using a standard plug, but connected directly to a wall mounted disconnect of some kind.
Pretty all domestic and light commercial is single phase line to neutral 230Vac. This is the case whether it is cord connected (appliances like vacuum cleaners) or fixed wiring for lighting, electric cookers, immersion heaters etc.

Line to line 400V is rarely used and, I think would contravene regulations for many applications. Industrial LV includes 400V TP typically used for motors.
 

winnie

Senior Member
My understanding is that while the supply is generally 220-240V L-N, that you often do not have polarized plugs and that plug in devices have to be designed to be safe with either terminal being 'hot'.

Besoeker: would line to line 220-240V be used in domestic applications at all?

Thanks
Jon
 

under8ed

Senior Member
..... that you often do not have polarized plugs and that plug in devices have to be designed to be safe with either terminal being 'hot'...Thanks Jon
I was also hoping this would be answered, suspect that both conductors are always switched?
 

Besoeker

Senior Member
My understanding is that while the supply is generally 220-240V L-N, that you often do not have polarized plugs and that plug in devices have to be designed to be safe with either terminal being 'hot'.
In UK they are configured to go in one way only. You can't have either terminal hot. Just the one that's intended to be hot.
The plugs are three pin. Live (which has a cartridge fuse inside the plug), neutral, and earth (ground for you).

Here's a double socket I installed at home. That might make it clear what I'm trying to explain.

WallSocket01_zps4d1ea8d3.jpg

The socket also has shutters on the live and neutral, not so obvious in the pic, but these shutters don't open until the earth, middle top, prong has been inserted so there is no danger of sticking something in there for toddlers.

Besoeker: would line to line 220-240V be used in domestic applications at all?

Thanks
Jon
We don't have line to line 220-240V so the question doesn't arise.
 

zbang

Senior Member
Hey! That's ground up! :D

What's the rationale for individual outlet switches? I've always wondered about that.
 

mbrooke

Senior Member
I want to say the brits got two things right: 230 volts and rings. I could wire an entire first floor with one 32 amp circuit feeding washer, dryer, SABC, kitchen, living room ect, ect while still being to code. IMO the most elegant resi practice ever devised.

Typical UK homes only have a few circuits:

1. 32 amp first floor ring

2. 32 amp second floor ring

3. 10amp lighting radial

4. 40 amp cooker

5. 20amp Immersion heater
 

under8ed

Senior Member
I was also hoping this would be answered, suspect that both conductors are always switched?
Besoeker,

Throughout other countries in Europe, are you aware if switching for the round plug appliances is done with both the hot & neutral since they do not appear to be polarized?
 

zbang

Senior Member
You can turn the power off.
Well, yes, but AFAICT just about appliances have their own power switches. And, you can unplug them. Are they a holdover from the older socket design(s)? The answer might be "because", but I hope it better than that.
 

Besoeker

Senior Member
Well, yes, but AFAICT just about appliances have their own power switches. And, you can unplug them. Are they a holdover from the older socket design(s)? The answer might be "because", but I hope it better than that.
Actually, some sockets don't have them. Mostly older ones that I've seen.

I've seen a lot of information/disinformation from other (mainly US based sites) about using power strips so that everything can be turned off at the strip to avoid "vampire power" drain with stuff on standby and heard totally incredible tales about how much that slashed electricity bills.

Mostly nonsense of course. Our main television uses 0.9W on standby. Wall warts, also blamed for vampire power is also nonsensical. If it doesn't get warm it is dissipating absolutely minimal power.
I digress.

BTW, this isn't a rant against the US. Just the idiots on other forums who post this kind of rubbish.
 

Besoeker

Senior Member
Besoeker,

Throughout other countries in Europe, are you aware if switching for the round plug appliances is done with both the hot & neutral since they do not appear to be polarized?
You'd have to ask someone from another European country.
 

mbrooke

Senior Member
Besoeker,

Throughout other countries in Europe, are you aware if switching for the round plug appliances is done with both the hot & neutral since they do not appear to be polarized?
My understanding is that schuko outlets are not switched and are not polarized.
 

under8ed

Senior Member
My understanding is that schuko outlets are not switched and are not polarized.
That is also my understanding, my question is concerning the appliance or device which is plugged into these outlets. With our polarized plugs here, we only switch the power conductor leg. I imagine that on this system, a switch on a lamp, coffee pot, stereo, or anything for that matter; must be double pole to break the neutral as well.
 

mbrooke

Senior Member
That is also my understanding, my question is concerning the appliance or device which is plugged into these outlets. With our polarized plugs here, we only switch the power conductor leg. I imagine that on this system, a switch on a lamp, coffee pot, stereo, or anything for that matter; must be double pole to break the neutral as well.

Why must a switch be double pole to begin with? Breaking only one leg turns the appliance off.
 
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