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Answers To Electrical Questions About Electric Baseboard Heaters, Boxes For Thermostats And Supplying Power To A Pole Barn

September 25, 2009

Question Michael asks:
WELL THE PROPANE COMPANY THIS YEAR IS KILLING EVERYONE SO I AM THINKING OF ELECTRIC BASEBOARD, I’LL NEED 2) 8 FOOTERS AND A 2) OR 4) FOOTER IN THE BATH, (SMALL PLACE ALSO HAVE PELLET BACK, I HAVE RECEPTACLES UNDER THE 2 WINDOWS I NEED TO PLACE THESE HEATERS, WHY CAN’T I INSTALL A HEATER THERE, THEY ARE 18? ABOVE FLOOR. ONE I USE AND ONE I DON’T.

Answer:
You can’t do this because the cord from anything that you plug into the receptacle will melt from the heat. Once the insulation is melted someone can come in contact with the live wires or they could short out causing a fire.

You can purchase electric baseboard heaters with receptacles already in them. I recommend doing this and blank off the existing receptacles. However, the receptacle in the heater can’t be tapped off of the heater circuit. I recommend installing a new cable from your existing receptacle down the wall and into your heater.

 

Gerard Edwards asks:
Hi I am installing Thermostats for my Baseboard heaters what kind of a box do I use to mount the thermostats to. kindly appreciate your answer Thank you

Answer:
The thermostat should be installed in a single gang box. If it is a residential new construction application, then use a single gang nail on box. If it is a residential remodel application, then use an old work box for flush mount or a 4″ square with a single gang, no raise mud ring for surface mount.

 

Aaron Crawford asks:
I just built a new pole building on my farm and I need to run some electric to it for lights and maybe some outlets. My father suggested that I splice into a 220 volt circuit I have running outside for a water pump. That would be fine with me, but I want to have 110 Volts out in my building. I told him that I would have to use a Voltage converter but I am not really sure if I do or not. Could you please give me some idea on how I can splice into a 220 Volt circuit and get 110 Volts for my power supply without using a converter? Thanks …

Answer:
You can’t do this! This is very unsafe. This can’t be done because the well pump has 2 hot wires and 1 ground wire running to it. For a 120 volt circuit you need 1 ground, 1 neutral and 1 hot wire. The 220 volt circuit is protected by a double pole circuit breaker. If you tap 120 volts or 1 leg of the circuit, then the circuit breaker will not trip.

I recommend installing a 50 amp 240 volt circuit to your pole barn. This will give you plenty of power for lighting as well as receptacles. If you plan to plug a block heater in for a tractor or some other piece of equipment, then you will need a dedicated circuit for each block heater. If you plan on welding in the pole barn, then I would increase the amperage to 60 or 100 amps.

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