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110 vs 220 volts on tools

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  • 110 vs 220 volts on tools

    The Jointer/Planer gives me a choice on 110/220. I have the choice to run the 220 voltage. Is there enough advantage to go thru the work to convert the tool?

  • #2

    The basic reason for running 220 volt vs 110 volts would be to decrease the amperage load. For example: If you were running a tool that draws close to 10 or 12 amps on normal run time, the amperage would increase on start-up (initial load/torque) and if the tool was put under a heavy load (like ripping on table saw or taking the maximum cut on a planer) the amperage would also increase, relative to the load placed on the tool. If plugged into a standard 15 amp line, you'd most likely trip the breaker. But even if not, you'd be pulling enough amps through the standard 14 guage wire as to risk overheating it. (14 guage wire is rated for 15 amps and 12 guage wire is rated at 20 amps.) You must also have the proper receptacle for whatever you are going to use... 110 volt/15 amp, 110 volt/20 amp, 220 volt, etc.)

    Basic electricity (Ohm's Law) dictates that as voltage capacity increases, the amperage decreases. So, a 15 amp load at 110 volts would decrease by half at 220 volts... which would be 7.5 amps.

    So, you could run 220 on proper rated (voltage) 14 gauge wire and be well within the safety factor. You MUST however ensure that the receptacles are properly rated for the correct voltage/amperage. Also, it is vital that you ensure that both local and national electrical codes are met. A qualified electrician may need to be consulted. (I'm NOT a certified electrician.)

    Last edited by CWSmith; 07-05-2006, 11:32 PM.