New Baseboard Heater install

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by 98ZJUSMC, Nov 29, 2010.

  1. 98ZJUSMC

    98ZJUSMC New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Tunnel Hill, Ill
    Hey!

    This is more an electrical issue so, I'll post it here. I am installing a 240V 500 Watt Cadet baseboard heater in a bedroom I am remodeling. I ran the NMB from a single pole 20A double breaker (more on that in a minute) to a receptacle box on the wall of the bedroom where the thermostat will go, then to the heater. I wired the thermostat box direct just to make sure the heater is working. I get power on both legs at the thermostat box and at the heater itself. It's not working at all. No heat, whatsoever.

    I realize that I need to install a double pole breaker for the final install so both legs will trip together. The single pole is just a temporary to make sure there are no problems along the run.

    My assumption is the heater is bad. Anyone see any other problem? I ran my Fluke Voltage Detector down the heater element of the heater and it tweeted very intermittently. I assumed it would tweet constantly. All connections have been checked and double checked.

    Thanks!
  2. Thatguy

    Thatguy Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,459
    Location:
    MD
    The 500 W heater should read (240^2)/500 = 115 ohms.
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2010
  3. 98ZJUSMC

    98ZJUSMC New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Tunnel Hill, Ill
    Oh. I didn't check continuity. Where can i check that at the two power leads?

    It's definitely 500W
  4. Jim Port

    Jim Port Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    156
    Location:
    Maryland
    Can you describe the breaker again? A single pole double breaker does not make sense.

    What connections did you make at the heater?
  5. 98ZJUSMC

    98ZJUSMC New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Tunnel Hill, Ill
    I used a 20A 2-circuit circuit breaker. There is only one buss bar clip.
  6. nukeman

    nukeman Nuclear Engineer

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    VA
    Sounds like that is the problem (assuming it is a tandum type breaker). Single breakers normally grab onto one buss bar. In order to get 220/240V, you need to be connected to both bars. A normal breaker for this situation will grab onto both bars.

    Assuming that you have not checked the total voltage (red to black), what you are getting is 110v on each leg, but the legs are the same phase, so the actual voltage that the heater is seeing is 0v.

    Get the right breaker, and you should be in business. If it still doesn't work, check voltage at the t-stat and heater and then get the ohms on the heater itself (power OFF).
  7. 98ZJUSMC

    98ZJUSMC New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Tunnel Hill, Ill
    Ahhhhh..... Thank you nukeman. I read this about the voltage somewhere else, but couldn't get an explanation. Or at least one I could understand. I thought.....well, I thought wrong.

    I'll go ahead and do that. I have an empty breaker above the tandem in the breaker box. I'll hook one leg up to it and simulate the two legs for test purposes.
  8. 98ZJUSMC

    98ZJUSMC New Member

    Messages:
    25
    Location:
    Tunnel Hill, Ill
    Thanks nukeman. Hooked it up that way and she be heatin'!

    Off I go to the Depot!
  9. nukeman

    nukeman Nuclear Engineer

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    VA
    Good deal. Glad to hear that it is now working. :)
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