Running small 110V motor on 220V

Thread Starter

mculik5

Joined May 9, 2018
15
I have a liquid cooled CNC machine that runs on 220V/60Hz. The cooling pump, which is an aquarium/fountain pump, is 110V/60Hz. Presently, I have to plug the cooling pump in separately, which recently lead to a situation where I ran without cooling for a few minutes. No big deal, but I want to prevent this from happening again by connecting the cooling pump to the main, 220V circuit so it comes on as I power on the machine itself.

Unfortunately, neither the machine's power cord nor the wiring in my walls have a neutral wire. I suppose I could get 110V by using the ground, but that seems like a terrible, possibly dangerous idea.

This is the pump - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B077S2TCT2. I bought this one because it's from a European company, made in Europe, and the Amazon picture showed a European electrical tag (220V/50Hz). I was hoping for a European unit with a US plug, but the unit I got has a tag that says 120V/60Hz.

The motor itself, or the stator at least, is completed epoxy potted. The only moving part is a rotor with a magnet that looks like this - https://www.amazon.com/Magnetic-Replacement-Assembly-Aquarium-Impeller/dp/B01E6V649Y, which sits in a blind hole on the "exposed to water" side of the pump (obviously ;-).

As you can tell, I don't know much about motors. Part of me thinks the part is universal and the manufacturer just labels it with US or Global power specs, and that I'd be fine to try hooking it up to 220V/60Hz. On the other hand, if that were the case, why not just put a universal label on it, too?

My questions are two:

1. Based on this limited info, what's the likelihood the pump catches fire and melts if I connect it to 220V, wasting my $45?
2. If it doesn't melt, at least initially, do you think I'm impacting it's longevity by running it on 220V?

I get confused with electricity. Part of me thinks it might run faster on 220V. Part of me thinks the speed will be the same because of the 60Hz being the same, and it will just pull fewer amps on 220V, like some of my power tools that can be wired either way. And part of me thinks the 220V is too much "pressure" for a coil potentially designed for 110V, and the whole think will heat up and grenade. All of these seem like viable ideas, I just get confused about how they interact with each other and which ideas apply to which motor types.

Any help is appreciated. Thanks!
 

MaxHeadRoom

Joined Jul 18, 2013
24,273
You mention 220v (240?) 60 hz and neutral, so I assume you are in N.A.?
If so, is there no way to run the pump from an adjacent 120v 15a outlet?
You could fit a small relay in the pump circuit that is energized by the main machine.
 

Thread Starter

mculik5

Joined May 9, 2018
15
@ElectricSpidey, @ronsimpson - I'm 99% certain I'll be buying a transformer, but figured I'd ask here in order to #1 learn something and #2 potentially save a few bucks. Unfortunately, I'm having a very hard time finding a 220V pump that's small enough.

@MaxHeadRoom - Yes, I'm in NA. Interesting suggestion, but my shop is small and I move the CNC around on wheels. My goal is to have one cord to plug in and one cord to trip over.

Going back to my original questions, for the sake of learning, do you guys have any idea what kind of motor it is based on my description, and/or what kind of reaction I could expect if I tried the 220V directly (and why)? I mentioned the three things I think might happen, but would love the opinions of folks far smarter than I.

Thanks!
 

crutschow

Joined Mar 14, 2008
28,580
what kind of reaction I could expect if I tried the 220V directly
It would likely generate a loud hum/buzz, draw a lot of current and blow the breaker.
Otherwise it will draw a lot of current and burn the windings.
(and why)?
Motors are designed as inexpensively as possible so the magnetic core is driven close to saturation at the maximum rated voltage.
Voltage above that will saturate the core which means the inductance that is limiting the current drops to near zero and the current is then limited only by winding resistance, which is much lower than the normal inductive reactance.
That will likely let out the magic smoke. ;)
 

MrSalts

Joined Apr 2, 2020
852
@ElectricSpidey, @ronsimpson - I'm 99% certain I'll be buying a transformer, but figured I'd ask here in order to #1 learn something and #2 potentially save a few bucks. Unfortunately, I'm having a very hard time finding a 220V pump that's small enough.

@MaxHeadRoom - Yes, I'm in NA. Interesting suggestion, but my shop is small and I move the CNC around on wheels. My goal is to have one cord to plug in and one cord to trip over.

Going back to my original questions, for the sake of learning, do you guys have any idea what kind of motor it is based on my description, and/or what kind of reaction I could expect if I tried the 220V directly (and why)? I mentioned the three things I think might happen, but would love the opinions of folks far smarter than I.

Thanks!
You need to try it.
assuming your circuit has a proper circuit breaker...
Set the motor on a concrete floor, connect it up, flip the switch.
Let us know what happens.
 

Thread Starter

mculik5

Joined May 9, 2018
15
@crutschow - Thanks! That's a VERY informative answer.

If I understand you correctly, the rotor magnet is a like a tank that "fills with" energy via magnetic inductance from the motor coil. When the "tank" is less than "full," current flows because of the "pressure" (220V in this example) and there are no problems. BUT...when the "tank" gets "full," that 220V of "pressure" starts backing up in the "hose" (meaning the motor coil), and since the "hose" is thin and cheap, the "hose bursts" - meaning the motor coil overheats and the whole thing melts. ;-) Is that roughly correct?

Separately, do you think there's any merit to the idea that it's the same motor as used globally, with different screen printing for North America? And that, to @MrSalts point, if I try, it'll just start up and run fine?

I'm super curious, but $45 is a lot to risk to identify a possible solution to a problem that has several other viable solutions.

Thanks!
 

MrSalts

Joined Apr 2, 2020
852
@crutschow - Thanks! That's a VERY informative answer.

If I understand you correctly, the rotor magnet is a like a tank that "fills with" energy via magnetic inductance from the motor coil. When the "tank" is less than "full," current flows because of the "pressure" (220V in this example) and there are no problems. BUT...when the "tank" gets "full," that 220V of "pressure" starts backing up in the "hose" (meaning the motor coil), and since the "hose" is thin and cheap, the "hose bursts" - meaning the motor coil overheats and the whole thing melts. ;-) Is that roughly correct?

Separately, do you think there's any merit to the idea that it's the same motor as used globally, with different screen printing for North America? And that, to @MrSalts point, if I try, it'll just start up and run fine?

I'm super curious, but $45 is a lot to risk to identify a possible solution to a problem that has several other viable solutions.

Thanks!
$45 is almost nothing to kill your curious cat thoughts. If you give it a try. Make sure to do it on a concrete floor away from anything combustible (anything that burns). Like the middle of your driveway. Set the motor in a steel pail so the spinning and burning motor doesn't take off across the road and light the neighbor's house on fire. Wear safety glasses or face shield.
 

MaxHeadRoom

Joined Jul 18, 2013
24,273
First If you got this unit from Amazon as the link says, send it back for free return/credit and get a 240vac version.
Especially if it was sold as a 240v version.
At 50hz it sounds like it was made for Europe market.
The other alternative at only 50w is to obtain a small step down transformer.
Do not run it on 240v unless you want to burn $45.00

.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,636
I've scrapped a number of pumps from used washing machines and dish washers. Those I've scrapped have all been 110VAC. I'm wondering if there's a 220 washer out there. Otherwise, a transformer is the only safe approach.
I suppose I could get 110V by using the ground, but that seems like a terrible, possibly dangerous idea.
Good for you resisting the idea of using one leg and ground. I don't know why that would be a bad idea, but I believe it is.
 

Thread Starter

mculik5

Joined May 9, 2018
15
Ended up finding a small DC pump that comes with a transformer that will take 220V - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07YV38GT1/.

I know some of you will be bummed, but the other pump is going back to Amazon. No driveway fires for me this weekend! Although the kitchen might be a different story, with Thanksgiving and all. ;-)

Thanks for all the help! Learned something new! For those in the US and other places that celebrate, Happy Thanksgiving!
 

MrSalts

Joined Apr 2, 2020
852
Ended up finding a small DC pump that comes with a transformer that will take 220V - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07YV38GT1/.

I know some of you will be bummed, but the other pump is going back to Amazon. No driveway fires for me this weekend! Although the kitchen might be a different story, with Thanksgiving and all. ;-)

Thanks for all the help! Learned something new! For those in the US and other places that celebrate, Happy Thanksgiving!
I wish there is a "don't like" button. I wanted to hear how the spinning motor, smelling of melted wires, whirled it's way across your street with a trail of smoke and landed next to your neighbors holiday scarecrow which immediately went up in a flame.
 

Thread Starter

mculik5

Joined May 9, 2018
15
@MrSalts - Love it!

But with my luck, the thing would boomerang and knife its way into the decorative hay bale my wife put on our front porch at 7200 RPM. The siding and the porch ceiling would melt in the ensuing blaze, and the house would smell of charred gourd and crispy vinyl for the holiday weekend. And then she'd make me sell the CNC machine to pay for the new siding, which I'd be installing in the dead of winter. ;-)

Happy Thanksgiving!
 

MaxHeadRoom

Joined Jul 18, 2013
24,273
One advantage with Amazon!
Also I would leave a comment on the wrong voltage supplied.
Some suppliers will confirm a certain standard when shipping to another country, I ordered a CD movie from the UK and they confirmed with me first that I had a player with the EU format before shipping. :cool:
 
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