a.c voltage house hold power

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by mkesharp, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. mkesharp

    Thread Starter New Member

    Feb 2, 2009
    hi. im kinda new to this but would somebody fill me in on the
    neutral wire function when the 2 hot wires are wired in series
    to make 240 volts is any current running thru it and do you have
    to have the neutral in the 240 volt circuit.it appears to me the current is
    flowing in just the hot wires.im i right if not what am i not seeing.

    thanks michael
  2. Bernard

    AAC Fanatic!

    Aug 7, 2008
    You are mostly correct, but two hot wires are not strictly in series,;there is a center tapped transformer between them. Each leg is 120, ct is neutral side to side is 240. Each hot leg to be protected ,ie. ganged circuit breaker for 240. A dedicated 240 appliance does not need a neutral, but the white wire may be used as one leg if it is marked on each end with black or red tape. Green is for frame ground. Mostly correct inf, but remember that I'm stuck in the 1970s.
  3. thingmaker3

    Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
    Many 240V appliances have 120V circuits for control or timing. Such circuits require the neutral wire.
  4. mik3

    Senior Member

    Feb 4, 2008
    If the appliance needs only 240V then the neutral wire is not needed.

    Current through the neutral occurs when you connect 120V appliances.

    However, always remember to use the ground wire for safety.