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AssuredElectrical, Home Improvement Enthusiast

Category: Home Improvement

Satisfied Customers: 4241

Experience: Electrical contractor's license

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Hi I am interested in getting a straight heating element to

Customer Question

Hi I am interested in getting a straight heating element to work with a 110 v power supply on uk building sites but I'm not having much luck because I keep getting told the element I need will only work on 240 v is there any way to safely make this element work with a 110 power supply

If you are talking about just a heating element and not controls operating the element, you can use any voltage you wish. Heating elements work strictly on the resistance of the element.

The critical component here, is that when you change the voltage from the design voltage, you will change your heat output in wattage.

Let me give you the information so you can do your own calculations.

Say you have an element, that is designed at 5000 watts at 230 volts. You know if you apply 230 volts, you will get 5000 watts of power output.

Now, you want to use 110 volts on the same element.

Use this formula to determine what the new voltage will give you in output wattage on the same element.

new voltage squared 110 squared 12100 -------------------------------- = ------------------- = ------------ = 22.8% design voltage squared 230 squared 52900

so take that and you get 5000 x 22.8% = 1140 watts at 110 volts

Now you have the ratio difference, so you can calculate any element you wish that is designed for 230 volts and find what you will get when using 110 volts.

Just multiply the wattage by 22.8%

Just keep in mind, if you have 120 actual volts, the number will change and wattage will be higher than at 110 volts

Here is the long form math if you wish to use it, just remember, you need to find the Ohms of the element at its designed voltage first. Then use the Ohms to find the wattage on the new voltage.

Thanks for the response this element will be used to heat plastic so it is soft enough to bend I work with a heater that does this I just wish to build my own the one I use has the following information voltage 110 v Single phase Power 1.5kw Opperating temp 100-290 deg c and yes it is like a water heater I'm just wanting to make sure if any element will work on a 110 v supply it would be controlled by a on off a with and a thermostat controll but not sure what controll I would need

Yes, that is correct, a heating element itself can work on different voltages than the one that it was designed for initially.

The key, is you lose the wattage as you go down in the voltage, so keep that in mind as to what wattage you need for your particular situation. You have the formula to calculate whatever elements you wish.

You can use any standard thermostat with sensing bulb, just go with an analog type and it just makes and breaks the voltage when it reaches temperature. If you go digital, then you need the voltage to match for its operation, whether it is 110 or 230 volts.

CLICK HERE and see an example of the type thermostat.

I am sure you can find one at a building supply close to you or one you regularly shop .