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understanding electricity wiring

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understanding electricity wiring

Resistance is a measure of a material’s ability to oppose the flow of electricity. For the parallel example, the amount of water from the main stream (total current) gets divided into two streams, but the total amount of water flowing through those two streams is equal to the original amount of water. Though it’s sometimes useful to think about the mathematical relationships of parallel and series circuits, it’s often more useful to think about them in terms of practical effects. For example, you do not want to install the outlet on a wire that controls a light fixture. If they are routed underground, they are known as a service lateral. Older homes may have ground systems that rely on metal electrical boxes, metal conduit (which houses wiring), and metal water pipes. Electricity consists of the flow of electrons through a conductor, for example, an electric wire or cable. Electrical Question from Edmund about Electrical Wiring Meters may be analog or digital type, although most new meters are digital and can be read remotely by the utility company. Fuses are just as effective as breakers, but most new panels today use breakers instead of fuses. He is an engineer with experience managing and overseeing large civil works construction. It is important to note that power coming from the service lines to the electric meter, and then to the main service panel, is always live. It is measured in Volts. Installation diagram Ground L1 L2 Field power supply 208-1-60 YEL L1 L2 L3 460-3-60 Figure 4. That electricity comes from power plants that burn coal, catch the wind, or harness nuclear reactions. A box must be sized appropriately for the number and size of wires entering the box. Metal electrical boxes must be grounded to the home's grounding system; plastic boxes do not need grounding because they are nonconductive. Side by side, they are in parallel with one another. Current follows the path of least resistance to the ground. Is It a Good Idea to Install a Smart Electric Meter in Your Home? Electricity moves through any metal conductor, such as a wire or the metal contacts and other components inside a switch or receptacle. Hot wires typically are black or red but can be other colors. A sponge in the pipe would act as a resistor, limiting the current (and the voltage) flowing through the pipe. For Best Results Consult a Licensed Electrical Contractor. Wiring … Every circuit has to have a load of some sort, All of the electrical energy in a circuit has to get used by the load. In order to do that, though, it’s necessary to understand a few things about electricity. 7 Types of Electrical Conduit—EMT, PVC, RMC, and More, Learn About the World's Top Renewable Energy Companies, Where to Install a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI), The NEC Requires GFCI Protection for Receptacles Located Outdoors. Let’s look at how the current and voltage changes when components are in series or in parallel: When two components are in series, they are placed one after another, like so: For resistors in parallel, the voltage across them is equal, but the current is divided between them. Question: I have a electrical box where I wanted to put an outlet. So if it has a choice of two paths in a circuit, and one has less resistance, that’s the path it’ll take. So I1 + I2 = Itotal. For the series example, if one resistor lowers the voltage (water pressure), only a smaller voltage (trickle of water) gets through to the next. Keeping in mind these basic relationships will help you figure out what the effect of one component is on another when you see them in a circuit together, even if you don’t know (or care about) their precise mathematical relationship. Following that analogy, current would be how much water (or electricity) is flowing past a certain point. It shows how the electrical wires are interconnected and can also show where fixtures and components may be connected to the system. The service entrance is the equipment that brings electrical power to the home. They are symbolized like this: Capacitors store up electricity while current is flowing into them, then release the energy when the incoming current is removed. If a capacitor is polarized, it will be marked as such on the diagram. Once the power reaches the house via the service drop or service lateral cables, it passes through the electric meter, which may be mounted on an exterior wall or may be located inside the home's breaker box. Residential electrical wiring systems start with the utility's power lines and equipment that provide power to the home, known collectively as the service entrance. Think of a geyser as high voltage, and the shower of a low-rent apartment on the fifth floor of a tenement building as low voltage (unless you’re one of those lucky people with good water pressure!). What is a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO), and What Does it Involve? As with all projects, positively identifying the wiring and understanding the purpose of the circuit in question is the key to knowing what can or cannot be done. Understanding Electrical Wiring Labeling Electrical wires and cable have markings stamped or printed on their insulation or outer sheathing. Volts = Amps x Ohms, or, Current (I), voltage (V), and resistance (R) are also related to electrical power (P) (measured in watts), as follows: Watts = Volts x Amps or. Electronics refers to using changing electrical properties to convey information. However, if the wires are not spliced as described then the wiring will need to be identified and understood what their function is. This process of changing one energy into another is called transduction, and devices that do it are called transducers. The box has five incoming wires(each with a white, black and ground). Wiring Diagrams. The Following links will assist you with your electrical question: For more information about Electrical Wiring Electrical Wiring, This link is helpful as a Homeowner Diodes permit the flow of electricity in one direction, and block it in the other direction. Resistors resist, but do not totally block, the flow of electricity. I was wondering which two I should use to connect the outlet and how to take care of the other three wires. If the circuit is broken at any point, the flow of power stops. Electricity is the flow of electrical energy through some conductive material. It is measured in Amperes, or Amps. The main service panel, commonly known as the breaker box or circuit breaker panel, distributes power to all circuits throughout the building. from positive to negative). Electronic sensors convert some other form of energy (light, heat, sound pressure, etc.) The load will convert the electrical energy to some other form of energy. Sometimes they are polarized, meaning current can only flow through them in a specific direction, and sometimes they are not. The amount of current going into any point in a circuit is the same as the amount coming out of that point. For example, a microphone changes sound pressure waves in the air to a changing electrical voltage. If so then it may be as simple as adding a single pig-tail wire to each set that will attach to the proposed outlet, then using the appropriate sized wire splice connector. Each circuit has a breaker that can shut itself off in the event of a short circuit or overload to cut power to the circuit. Boxes come in many different sizes and several different shapes. Current is a measure of the magnitude of the flow of electrons in a circuit. After that point, all of the electrical equipment is the homeowner's responsibility. It is measured in Ohms. After it flows through the household system, it is fed back to the utility on the neutral wire, completing the electrical circuit. These markings provide important information about the wiring and insulation, including the wire size and material, the type of insulation, the number of wires contained (inside a cable), and any special ratings or characteristics of the wire. As with all projects, positively identifying the wiring and understanding the purpose of the circuit in question is the key to knowing what can or cannot be done. Ground is the place in a circuit with where the potential energy of the electrons is zero. wiring (use copper conductors only) Figure 3. Old homes may have fuses instead of breakers. Background: Edmund, a Homeowner from Monroeville, PA The total current is constant, however, so we know that the divided current across the parallel resistors is equal to the total current. The meter records all electricity used by the home, measured in kilowatt-hours, or kWh. Electrical current flows from places of higher potential energy to places of lower potential energy (i.e. They are used to control the flow of current. A circuit is a closed loop containing a source of electrical energy (like a battery) and a load (like a light bulb). Power supply symbols 1 2 A B Figure 5. Most residential service includes three wires: two cables carrying 120 volts each (for a total of 240 volts) and one grounded neutral wire.

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