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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Ohio
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    Question I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    I have a very old house an electrician put a wall heater in for the landlord but I need an outlet there instead. The heater is pulling 40amps from two 20amp breakers tied together.
    There is only one wire going to the wall heater so I connected the wire to an outlet and installed that into the wall, I tested my work and blew light bulbs in the lamp I used to test. I know I have too much power going to the outlet but if I changed the two 20amp breakers and replaced them with one 20amp breaker would my outlet work safely?
    Also if I shut the breaker labeled main for the panel off would this allow me to change the breakers to 20amp without getting shocked?
    Thank you for your help!
    Last edited by mattoreo21; 03-27-2008 at 02:46 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Denver, CO
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    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    Tell us the colors of wire going from the two pole breaker to the outlet and the colors of the wires at the outlet.

    Oh! and turn off that two pole breaker for now........ We don't want you to be turning into poptart.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Maryland
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    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    your wall heater is probably running on 240 volts & that's why the light bulb blew. Get an electrician since you are obviously in over your head.
    Some more electrically minded folk may offer advice, but I wouldn't even with the main breaker off.

  4. #4
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    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ohio
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    Arrow Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    The wires are 1 black 1 white and a ground wire. I have wired the outlet in the correct manner, But as I am pulling too much current to my new outlet the power is off to the outlet. My main question is if I replace the double pole 20amp breakers with one single pole 20amp if this would work to power a TV? Also with the question about the elect panel I know If I turn off the main that shuts off the panel but the bus bar is still hot. Just wondered if it would work as my landlord is not good about repairs and I do not have the money to call in an electrician, but I will have a contractor friend helping me with the circuit breaker change. The work also will be inspected by the city to ensure it is up to code. Just need an outlet that wont blow the whole house when I turn the TV on. Again Thank You.
    Last edited by mattoreo21; 03-27-2008 at 03:09 PM. Reason: Reply to wire color.

  5. #5
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    Aug 2007
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    Denver, CO
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    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    Matto....

    Turning off the main should kill the power to the bus bars........

    Yeah you have phase A and phase B going to your receptacle or 240volts.

    If you take the cover off your panel your going to see that black and white going to either side of that two pole breaker.

    You need to move the white wire to your neutral bus....... You will see a bar in the panel where a bunch of other white wires go. That's the neutral bus. You will measure 120volts between the neutral bus and either phase A or B.

    No question is a stoupid question so ask away if that did not clear things up for you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    Also remember to that you will have to take the 2-pole breaker out and put in a single pole 20 amp breaker to power this outlet.NEC code will not allow you to feed a 120 volt outlet with one side of a 2-pole breaker. Hopes this helps.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,842

    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    By the way if you rewire it for 120volts and change the breaker as posted above your heater will no longer work properly. Or you could put in a 220 volt outlet change the plug on your lamp and use a 240 volt bulb.
    Jack
    Last edited by JLMCDANIEL; 03-27-2008 at 09:24 PM.
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in. Sorry this is a little confussing. A wall heater using a double pole 20 amp breaker will not pull 40 amps. YES! Turn off the main breaker before removing or working on the main panel. Check the voltage with a good meter________________________________________
    I have a very old house an electrician put a wall heater in for the landlord but I need an outlet there instead. Instead is the prime statement, you are removing the wall heater and want to use the old circuit for a 120 volt outlet. The heater is pulling 40amps from two 20amp breakers tied together. Not possible!
    There is only one wire going to the wall heater There should have been three wires going to the wall heater, usually one black, one white marked with black tape, and a bare ground wire. so I connected the wire to an outlet and installed that into the wall, I tested my work and blew light bulbs in the lamp I used to test. I know I have too much power (high voltage) going to the outlet but if I changed the two 20amp breakers and replaced them with one 20amp breaker would my outlet work safely? Yes follow the NEC and replace the double pole 240 Volt breaker with a single pole 120 volt breaker. Hopefully there was a black wire a white wire marked with black tape and a bare ground. Yes the white wire (remove black tape) and install on natural buss. The bare gound should be already grounded.
    Also if I shut the breaker labeled main for the panel off would this allow me to change the breakers to 20amp without getting shocked? ELECTRICUTED!!!!!!
    Thank you for your help! Yes have everything inspected by the city inspector. The National Fire Protection Agency is the writer of the National Electric Code. Only a good electrician prevents fires.

    Do not wire a standard lamp fixture up to a 240 Volt outlet, or use a 240 Volt light bulb.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ohio
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    3

    Question Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    Thank You all for the help, one more question. First I will not be using the heaters at all my power bill was $345.00 this month for a one br apt, and they haven't been on that much. Not good for me, I have another heater in another room same thing it is just an outlet now but with the double pole breaker could I run one outlet (black wire) into one side and the other outlets black wire into the other side of the breaker then connect the white wire(s) to the neutral bar in the panel? My thought is that I would have two outlets on one double pole breaker, again 20/20amp or should I put two single pole 20amp breakers in and remove the 20/20 breaker? The code in my town would allow me to put a trailer home on the roof if I felt like it so that isn't a problem but I want to be safe and not burn my house down while trying to do this. Again Thank You for the help!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,842

    Default Re: I have a wall heater running 40 amps and need to put a outlet in.

    If you are changing to 120 volt circuits you would need to replace the double with a single. That circuit is 20 amp 220 volt by the way not 40 amp.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

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