The Details Regarding The Relay Sockets

The relay sockets allow electromechanical switches which any variation in current among one of the electric circuits controls the electric flow of the other circuit. The relay sockets are designed from metal or composite materials that are available in different sizes, shapes as well as colors.

Relay sockets are different in terms of the terminal type, the number of pins within a blade, and the socket receptacle design. Terminals are devices that work to terminate the conductor. They mount to studs, posts or any other conductors so as to create an electric connection. Traditionally these connections are created using screws or you can do that by soldering wires or pins. The crimp terminals apply the physical compression of contact wire barrel around a conductor making an electrical as well as mechanical connection to the conductor. The quick-connect or disconnect terminals do not need tools to be used. Normally the relay sockets use 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 14, or 16 pins per single blade. There are a lot of socket receptacle designs such as the octal or circular sockets, plug sockets or blade, and the cube or square sockets. The miniature blade/pin sockets are normally known as midgets. The PCB sockets are the generally available type of sockets.

The features

The performance features include a number of poles, maximum current, and voltage

  • The single-pole (SP) sockets are normally applied to relays that control a single line with each throw.
  • The double – pole (DP) appliances are normally applied simultaneously with control two control lines. Traditionally, the first line is hot while the other line is neutral.
  • The triple – pole (TP) allows three pairs of contacts.
  • The four – pole appliances (4P), receives four pairs of contacts.

Additional things to consider when choosing a relay socket include the electrical ratings, insulation resistance, dielectric strength, as well as temperature range. Some of the products are shatterproof, flame retardant, or designed to be used in demanding applications. Besides, there is the electrical or mechanical on and off indicators.

The mounting designs

There are different mounting styles when it comes to relay sockets

  • Through-hole technology (THT) style whereby components are mounted upon a printed circuit board (PCB) by inserting component leads via holes within the board, then soldering the leads into position on the other side of the board.
  • The surface mount technology (SMT) style adds the components by using a soldering technique of components leads or terminals upon the surface of the board. Traditionally, the PCB pad is usually coated with a paste-like formulation of flux and solder.

Some of the relay sockets consist of mounting holes or are designed for being replaced within an existing structure or panel. While others are mounted upon a traditional DIN rail.

All About Relays

A relay is a switch that is electrically operated. The current that is flowing within the coil of the relay generates a magnetic field that attracts a lever and charges the contacts of the switch. The current of the coil can be on or off and this makes the relays to have two switch positions and most of them consist of double-throw switch contacts.

The relays let one circuit switch the other circuit and these two can entirely be separated from each other. For example, a low voltage battery circuit is able to use a relay to switch a 230V AC mains circuit. Relays do not have electrical connections between the two circuits. The magnetic and the mechanical act as the link between the two circuits.

The coil of the relay moves a large current which is normally 30mA for a 12V relay, but it can be as high as 100mA for relays that are designed to function from lower voltages. Most ICs do not have the capacity to offer this current and a transistor is normally used to amplify the small IC current to reach larger rates that are needed for the relay coil. The maximum output current for the most popular 555 timers IC is 200mA which is more than enough for supplying a relay coil directly.

The relays are normally found in SPDT or DPDT but they might consist of more sets of switch contacts such as relays with 4 sets of changeover contacts that are available.

You can visit your supplier website or catalog to see the relay’s connections. Normally the coil will usually be seen and it might be connected throughout around. The relay coils generate high voltage spikes when they are shut off and this might damage the transistors as well as the ICs within the circuit. In order to prevent damage, you have to connect a protection diode throughout the relay coil.

Generally, relays are designed for PCB mounting but you might solder wires directly to the pins enabling you to prevent melting the plastic housing of the relay.

The relay switches connections are usually labeled with NC, COM, and NO:

  • COM = Common, always connected to this and it is the mobile part of the switch.
  • NC stands for Normally Closed; COM is normally connected to this when the relay coil is switched off.
  • NO is Normally Open. And COM is connected to this when the relay coil is switched on.

You have to connect to COM and NO in case you need the switch circuit to be on when the relay coil is also on.

You have to connect to COM and NC in case you need the switch circuit to be on when the relay coil is off.

Selecting a relay

You have to consider different features when selecting a relay:

  1. The physical size and the pin arrangement

In case you need to select a relay for an existing PCB you must make sure that its size and the pin arrangements match. You can find this information from the supplier’s catalog or on the website.

  • The coil voltage

The relay’s coil voltage rating, as well as the resistance, should comply with the circuit that is powering the relay coil. A lot of relays have a coil that is rated for 12V supply but the 5V and 24V relays are rarely on market. Some of the relays function efficiently with a supply voltage which is normally a little lower to their rated value.

  • The coil resistance

The circuit should have the capacity to supply the required current to the relay coil. You can apply Ohm’s law to calculate the current:

The relay coil current

For example, A 12V supply relay that is having a coil resistance of 400  passes a current of 30mA. This is ideal when it comes to a 555 timer IC which has the maximum output current of 200mA.  This is extreme has many ICs cannot handle it and that means they will need a transistor in amplifying the current.

  • The switch ratings (voltage and current)

The relay’s switch contacts have to be ideal for the circuit that they are meant to control. You will have to check the current and voltage ratings. Remember that the voltage ratings are normally higher for the AC, such as 5A at 24V DC or 125V AC.

  • The switch contact arraignment (SPDT, DPDT, etc)

Normally most of the relays are DPDT or SPDT which are normally taken as single-pole changeover (SPICO) or 2-pole changeover (DPCO).

The rapid electronics: Relays

The protection diodes for the relays

The transistors, as well as the ICs, should be protected against the brief extreme voltage that is generated when a relay coil is switched off.

The current which is flowing via a relay coil generates a magnetic field that collapses abruptly as soon as the current is switched off. This sudden fall of the magnetic field creates a short extreme voltage throughout the relay coil which has a high possibility of damaging the coils and ICs. The protection diodes let the voltage that was induced to move a short current via the coil and the diode so that the magnetic field fades away so fast than instantly. This blocks the induced voltage from becoming extremely high and causing damage to transistors and ICs.

The reed relays

The reed relays have a coil that surrounds a reed switch. The reed switches are normally operated using a magnet, but when it comes to a reed relay current flows via the coil to generate a magnetic field and close the reed switch.

The reed relays normally consist of extreme coil resistances as compared to the standard relays. Besides they can be found in a wide range of voltages. They are able to switch more rapidly as compared to the standard relays, up to several hundred times per second, but they are able to handle low currents.

Compare the relays and transistors

Just like the relays, transistors can be applied as an electrically operated switch. For switching tiny DC currents that are less than 1A at low voltage they are normally an ideal choice as compared to the relay. But the transistors cannot switch AC like the mains electricity and when it comes to simple circuits they are normally an ideal choice for switching huge currents which are greater than 5 amps. In such conditions, a relay is needed, but remember that you might be required to install a low power transistor to switch the current for the relay’s coil.

The following are the basic advantages as well as disadvantages of the relays:

The advantages of the relays

  • Relays are able to switch the AC and DC while the transistors can only switch the DC.
  • The relays are able to switch higher voltages as compared to the standard transistors.
  • The relays are normally a better choice when it comes to switching large currents that are greater than 5 amps.
  • The relays are able to switch more than a single contact at the same time.

The disadvantages of the relays

  • Relays are huge as compared to the transistors for switching small currents.
  • Relays are not able to switch rapidly with the exception of reed relays, while transistors can switch many times within a second.
  • The relays need more current which many ICs cannot provide, and therefore a low power transistor might be required to switch the current for the relay’s coil.

The Double Pole Circuit breaker

Circuits breakers are referred to as safety switches that are meant to protect all the electrical circuits within your home. There are two main types of traditional breakers namely the single pole and the double pole breakers. The single-pole breakers are rated for 120 volts and the 15/20 amps. These control the standard lighting as well as the outlet circuits together with some appliances circuits within the house. The breakers themselves are normally narrow and take a single slot within the home’s breaker box. While the double pole breakers are normally rated for 20 to 60 amps and can supply up to 240-volt power to huge appliances such as ranges and electric dryers. They are double and huge breakers that can occupy up to two slots within the breaker box and contain a toggle switch that is normally twice the length of the toggle upon a single-pole breaker.

The operation

Within your breaker box or the main service panel, it consists of energized metal plates which are known as hot bus bars. Each particular pole or connection point upon the bars handle 120 volts of electricity. In case the single-pole breakers are connected, they snap within a single-pole to receive 120 volts. The double pole breakers snap into double poles creating a total of 240 volts. The circuit wiring that joins to double pole breakers consists of two hot wires. Each of these joins to a terminal upon the breaker and is normally protected by half of the breaker. In case there is a problem or fault that has occurred along one of these wires, the relative half of the breaker will eventually trip. This leads the other half of the breaker to trip within the same time due to the fact that the two halves are connected by a single breaker toggle or bar. This works to efficiently switch off the connections on both the bus poles hence shutting off the whole circuit at the same time.

The cheaters

In case you open the door upon the service panel and you identify that your breaker is a single width but having two tiny switch toggles, wither inline or in side by side this might be a cheater breaker. This is also known as a tandem, twin breaker or slimline. The cheater is a double breaker that occupies up space of a single-pole breaker. It is different from the double pole breaker which serves a single 240-volt circuit, the cheater handles double 120-volt circuits; it cannot be applied to supply 240 volts to a single circuit. There is a different type of a doubled-up breaker which is known as the squad breaker, which handles double 240-volt circuits but within the same width as the traditional double pole breaker.

Using a cheater breaker is not meant to mean that your electrician was lying that is just a nickname, but these breakers have to be connected perfectly to be safe and legal. First of all the panel has to be designed to allow the cheater breakers while the cheaters should be connected in their relative slots. Most of the panels only a few slots are suitable for handling cheaters. The cheaters are normally used when there is a small space within the panel and you need to add double 120-volt circuits or you need to add a space for a new 240-volt circuit on a different location within the panel. In case you need to know whether your pane can handle cheaters, call in an electrician. Remember that you should never customize or modify the cheater breaker to fit in a place where it should be as it can be very dangerous and can lead to fire outbreaks and deaths.

A Fused Disconnect Switch

When thinking about your commercial business electrical wiring and the entire preparation, safety comes first. This means that you must have a system that guarantees the safety of your associates, clients, and employees. Besides the safety of your investment such as machines and other equipment is very necessary. To attain this need, you need to install a safety switch or disconnect. These devices let you go about your normal operation without the risk of experiencing overload or short circuit that might harm you and your business. Besides they guarantee that you are safe from the worst scenarios.

We have a team of experienced electricians that will handle custom devices as well as electrical solutions that include the disconnect switches. Safety is our priority and we do know how important safety is for you and your team. We go extra miles to make sure that we offer you absolute safety when you decide to work with us. To us, you are not only a client but we are your partner in growth.

What are disconnect switches

These devices and their functions are normally simple and completely straight forward. These devices are just simple components that are connected to a particular electrical device or a generator system. When they are connected they will monitor the electric flow in the device. In case they sense any dangerous interruptions or fluctuations, they will disconnect the power from that particular device that they are intended to protect. This will prevent permanent harm or danger that may have arisen.

Normally there are two types of disconnect switches that are regularly used in commercial business namely: the fused ad non-fused switches. In this article, we are going to discuss the former so as to help you identify what will suit your needs.

What does a fused disconnect switch refer to?

The basic difference between these two types of switches which are then fused and non-fused can be found in their names. A fused disconnect switch allows for and needs to have a fuse in order to function as intended.

What does a fuse refer to?

Nowadays fuses are no longer common as they used to be, and this means you might have never heard of them. A fuse is a tiny glassy cylinder that consists of a small filament of metal. The metal that is installed in a fuse melts so quickly in case there is something wrong, such as an electrical failure or power surge. When there is such condition the filament melts and fuse blows immediately bringing the operation to as top and hence protecting the electrical device.

Fuses were used as the standards back then but due to advancements in technology, we have moved to common breakers that you can find in electrical panels.

Why do I have to install a fused disconnect?

By using a fused disconnect over a non-fused disconnect depends on a number of factors that are identical to your business. This includes the type of equipment that you are using, your electric power usage and rate, as well as your current safety systems, installed that play a vital role.

It is traditionally considered that a fused switch is safer as compared to the non-fused switch. This is sometimes true, but it depends on the situation because there are times when fusible switches cannot be used as they are not compatible and seem unnecessary.

Our fusible disconnect switch

We have been offering effective fusible and non-fusible disconnects for commercial businesses throughout the US for over a decade. We are experienced in this industry and our customer reviews can prove this. In case you have any questions regarding our safety switches, feel free to contact us. Our team will be happy to serve you.

The Panel Interlocking Kit

safety is an essential part of our lives. There is safety for yourself and family as well as safety for your properties and there is nothing that has to be secured as compared to your home. The breaker panel load center interlock kit which is also known as the breaker lockout will allow you to connect your portable generator to your electrical system in a secure way without having to experience the risk of back feed to utility power. With the generator supplying power to your home electrical system, it removes the need for running the extension cords within your home which both expose fire as well as safety problems. Our kits are designed in a way that should be installed by qualified electricians and should always meet the standards of the National Electrical Code as well as the National Fire Protection Code. These kids are under UL 67 listed by an independent lab to be used within the US. These are not approved to be used in Canada.

This kit offers safety when it comes to your home electrical units that you want to protect from any electrical related hazards. Besides our interlock kits ca fit most of the panel boards which include a full line of accessories that connect your portable generator to your home’s power system.

The mechanism of the interlock kit

Your panel board consists of a distribution and protection unit for electricity within your home. The power is supplied from the utility direct into the panel. then from here, it is supplied across different branch circuit breakers and out into the rest sections of your home. The interlock kit enables you to be able to disconnect your panel from the utility supply and switch it over to the generator that is being supplied through a new generator breaker. The interlock kit accepts one among these supply systems to be operating at the same time so as to prevent both power sources from being in connection at the same time. without an interlock kit or transfer switch, there is a possibility that someone might forget and open the main breaker which can result in a risk of electrocution to the men in service, damage of the generator as well as fire outbreak.

Having a single connection, it is safe to use anything within your home as all the circuits within your home have been activated via the breaker within your panel. besides it removes the danger of running unseen and dangerous extension cords to different sections of your home as well as the need to plug and unplug appliances as well as lights.

When an interlock kit has been installed, it is fast and easy to switch power from the utility to the generator whenever there is a power outage. And it will easily return the utility power once it is back on by reversing the procedure below.

  • Flip the main breaker to the OFF position
  • Flip all the branch circuits to the OFF position
  • Then slide the interlock plate up or down depending on the type of kit you own
  • Connect and start your generator
  • Flip your generator breaker to the ON position
  • Switch on all the essential circuits each one at a time. Let the appliances start before moving to the next circuit.

Note:

Appliances that impose large loads such as the microwaves, water heaters, dryers, etc. might not be able to run simultaneously. Besides the breakers do not consume power unless something within the room that they supplier has been cut on making it fine to have the breakers that supply all the bedrooms, washrooms, etc. on in order to have the power available for lights and such as you want them. It is better that you first check on what can be run with your generator to prevent the overload problem.

In case you are having gas, propane or oil you can run the furnace or boiler so as to keep warm. But, in case you own an electric heater it might not run as most generators offer below 10000 watts and this means it might lack enough power to run it. That is also so the same when it comes to the central air system as well. The interlock will work to handle any capacity of the generator even though if it happens that you have a heat pump or you need to run your air conditioning system, then you must consider buying a 12000-15000-watt generator.

How can I free up some space for my back feed breaker?

The back feed breaker is normally applied for the generator input connection to the panel. In order to connect the back feed breaker as well as the interlock, you need 2,3 or 4 free space. You can read this on your user guide regarding your panel requirements for your kit so as to identify the number of free spaces that are needed within your panel. In case you lack space in your panel you will have to get one piggyback breaker for every space that you want to create. The piggyback breakers are sometimes known as the half-height breakers due to the fact that they are manufactured with double space within a space that one breaker normally covers. But the problem is that they are just available in only 15 and 20 Amps ratings. Remember that in case you remove a 15-amp breaker from your panel, you should replace it with another 15 Amp piggyback breaker. Besides you should have an extra 15 Amp piggyback breaker somewhere within your panel that should be paired upon it. In case you are removing a 20 Amp breaker then the same rule has to be applied. In case you want to pair a 15 Amp and a 20 Amp breaker, then you will have to get a 15/20 Amp piggyback breaker. If you fail to free up the necessary spaces, then you will not be able to use this interlock kits.

Is it difficult to install the interlock kit?

Each kit is supplied with a complete installation guide. The kit comes with backplate, double-stick pads, front slider plate, thread lock, drill bit, and the labels.

  • Make sure that you disconnect the power from the panel
  • Then mount the backing plate in a proper position on the panel cover using double-stick pads
  • Isolate the panel cover
  • Search for branch breakers to free the needed amount of space for the generator back feed breaker as well as the interlock kit
  • Connect the generator back feed breaker
  • Connect the retaining strap around the back feed breaker and the label
  • Now drill 3 or 4 holes via the panel cover by using the backing plate as the guide
  • Isolate the burrs and file away the spot of pants in order to allow sufficient electrical ground contact
  • Connect the front slider plate using the included screws
  • Switch off the generator and the main breakers and then re-connect the panel cover
  • Test the interlock to see if it is operating as it should
  • Apply the thread lock upon the interlock screws
  • Apply the labels

The kits should be connected, tested, serviced and maintained by a professional electrician. Never try to do it yourself as you might end up dead unless if you have ever done it before and you are among the licensed electricians.

What appliances are included in a kit?
The kit consists of a specially designed backplate as well as the front plate that is able to fit the breaker panel, binder screws, binder posts, drill bit, install instructions, thread lock, labels for the main breaker, generator breaker, danger, operating instructions, retaining trap label and the retaining strap. Because of different varieties of breakers that are available on market, the kit does not consist of a branch breaker which is used as the generator back feed breaker. You will have to purchase it independently in your local store. Besides the outdoor inlet box, the generator code set and the building wire should be purchased separately.

Is it identical to the transfer switch?

These interlock kits are the ideal alternative in case there is no room for installing a separate transfer switch or transfer panel upon the wall next to your breaker panel or on the exterior section of your home near the power company meter. These kits are explained to UL 67 by an independent lab. But these interlock kits need the following:

  • Customization/modification of your load center breaker panel
  • Additional branch beaker spaces
  • Sufficient installation and operation check

As compared to many types of breakers which are factory built transfer switches, the interlock kits do not operate when the front panel is not installed.

How to prevent generator overloading?

Using these interlock kits in providing power to your entire breaker panel might lead to overloading your generator. The damage to the generator as well as some other appliance loads might originate from these overloads. To prevent these possibilities, we do recommend that you should install meters upon your generator feed to the panel. this will inform you how much load is in use at any given time and how much spare capacity is available for connecting additional loads. by having such information, you are able to know which branch circuits within your breaker panel should be turned on. You can purchase the generator meters from your local store or you can visit our store as we have a wide option of generator meters.

How to I know when the utility power is restored?

When there is a power outage, while the generator is running your panel, the main breaker will be in an OFF position. Therefore it will be hard for you to identify when the utility power has been restored unless you notice that your neighbor’s lights are ON. But we have an easy solution for this which is a power back appliance that will alert you when the utility power is back.

Just make us a call or visit our office as we will be happy to offer you help. You will be able to go through our different options of electric appliances that will help in making your home or office safer than it has ever been.

The Relay Switch and Its Mechanism

A relay is an electrically operated device that is designed into a switch. It normally uses an electromagnetic coil to work on its internal mechanical switching contacts. When a relay contact is in an open mode, this will switch the power ON for the circuit as soon as the coil is activated.

Why should you use a relay?

Relays let a low current circuit control a single or more extreme current circuits. Besides they offer the following advantages

  • They allow thinner wires to be used for connecting the control switch to the relay, therefore, saving space, weight as well as cost.
  • Relays let the power be routed upon the device over the shortest distance and therefore decreasing voltage loss.
  • The heavy gauge wire can only be applied to connect a power source through a relay to the device.

Why should you use a relay in a car?

There are a number of benefits that come with using a relay in a car. First of all, when you use a rely it means that the switching circuit does not need an extreme current rated switch or cable and this will decrease the cost and weight.

Besides can be located anywhere within the vehicle so as to offer effective power supply to the electrical appliances that you are controlling. Relays are ideal when it comes to controlling many circuits in a car such as the headlights, heater and electric motors.

Understanding the electrical features of a relay

The major relays feature electrical ratings for the coil as well as the internal switching contacts. The coil voltage rating is the voltage that is needed for the coil to function properly. The switching circuit of the relay consists of a voltage ampere rating. This refers to switch contacts maximum ratings and should never be exceeded. The double throw relays normally have double switch electrical features. One is normally used for the open terminal while the other is normally used for a closed terminal such as N/O: 35A at 14vdc, N/C: 20A at 14 Vdc.

Why should protection devices be used in a relay?

Relays are able to generate a large voltage spike when they are switched off due to the de-energizing effect of the coil. The resistors or diodes are sometimes connected across the coil of the relay reducing or stopping these spikes that travel back within the control circuit as well as the damaging sensitive appliances. The resistors are durable as compared to the diodes but not entirely efficient in eliminating voltage spikes. You have to assess the sensitivity of the appliances within the control circuit when making a decision if or what type of protection is needed.

What is the difference between the 4 and 5 pin relays?

A 4 pin relay is normally used in controlling a single circuit while  5 pin relay switches are able to control two circuits.

The 4 pin relay

These use 2 pins which are 85 and 86 to control the coil and the 2 pins which are the 30 and 87 which are responsible for switching power on a single circuit. There are 2 types of 4 pin relays which are, the normally open and the normally closed. A normally open relay is going to switch the power on for the relay when the coil is activated. While the normally closed relay will work to switch the power OFF for a circuit whenever the coil is activated.

The 5 pin relay

The 5 pin relays offer 2 pins which are the 85 and 86 for the purpose of controlling the coil as well as the 3 pins which are the 30, 87, and 87A which are responsible for switching power between the two circuits. They consist of both normally open and the normally closed connection pins. In case the coil is activated, the power will be switched from the normally closed switch and forwarded to the normally open pin.

What is the use of ISO relays?

They are designed to be used in the automotive industry and comply with a standard pattern when it comes to their electrical terminals. The new ISO 280 relays consist of a small pin terminal of 2.8mm wide that is used in small power distribution systems and holders.

The standard ISO relays

We offer both 4 pins normally open and the 5 pin change over relays which come with resistor protection that can be found in 12V or 24V ratings. In case you need diode protection, do not hesitate to contact us.

The new ISO 280 relays

We offer both 4 pins normally open as well as the 5 pin change over that come with the resistor protection and can be found in 12V or 24V. In case you need diode protection do not hesitate to call us.

The relay holders

We offer a variety of holders for ISO as well as ISO 280 relays that can install one or multiple relays. Besides we have a large variety of power supply units that can be installed with a combination of fuses, relays as well as circuit breakers.

What Does A Safety Switch Refer To?

a safety switch is also known as a disconnect switch or a load break switch that offers multiple purposes but its basic function is to function as a means of disconnecting a service entrance in case of a fault within the circuit so as to protect motors or heavy machinery.

This means that the safety switches are normally used in disconnecting manufacturing machines as well as motors from their power supply sources. You might need to disconnect your equipment from its power source due to a number of reasons such as:

  • Emergency stoppage
  • For maintenance and repair

The safety switches are among the requirements of the National Electrical Code (NEC) that should be installed in all industrial or manufacturing plants. This code was established by the National Fire Protection Association. As to the NEC article 430.102B, a safety switch should be in view from all motors as well as the manufacturing equipment. The NEC defines the term “insight” as visible and not being more than 50 feet away from the machine/equipment it controls.

There are different types of disconnect switches that are available and these depend on the conditions that exist in your working environment. We offer fusible safety switches with a NEMA 4 casing or NEMA 4X casing. We have also non-fusible safety disconnects with NEMA 4 or 4X casings.

Fusible Vs non-fusible disconnects

Many people tend to wonder how do these two disconnects differ from one another as they seem to perform the same tasks. Bothe the fusible and non-fusible disconnects, as the circuit is opened, the safety switch disconnects the load from the power source while when it is closed the circuits connect the load to its power source.

But their difference is as follows:

  • The fusible safety switch combines the fuses with the switch in a single casing and this makes it easy to manually open and close the circuit while the fuses work to prevent overcurrent.
  • The non-fusible safety switches do not consist of any fuses within its casing and offer no circuit protection measures. The main purpose of a non-fusible safety switch is to offer an easy way that will help to open and close a circuit.

What is the level of protection that is offered by the safety switches?

Safety switches are convenient and able to providing safety for your home as well as properties. Besides they offer the following:

  • Protect your home and properties against overcurrent
  • Protect your home and appliances against overloads
  • Protect your home and appliances against short circuits
  • Protect tour circuit against heat generated damages

Safety switches are designed to intervene in the power whenever there is any fault within the circuit.

You can purchase a safety switch/disconnect from us. We have different options of heavy-duty switches and disconnect switches that include the following:

  • The fusible safety switch or disconnect with NEMA 4 casing
  • The fusible switch or disconnect with NEMA 4X casing
  • The non-fusible switch or disconnect with NEMA 4 casing
  • And non-fusible switch or disconnect with NEMA 4X casing

In case you are in need of a safety switch you can depend on us as we have different options that will suit your needs. Besides we will advise you according to your needs after we ask you a number of questions to determine what kind of switch that will meet what you want.

How Does A Single Pole Breaker Differ From A Double Pole Breaker?

In case you have tried taking a peek at your home’s main circuit breaker panel, you must have seen two different types of breakers which are the single pole and the double pole breakers.

The question is how do these two breakers differ from each other?

A single-pole breaker and pole breaker normally differ in the voltage as well as amperage they handle as well as the way they are wired.

  • The single-pole breaker: This can handle 120 volts, 15-20 amps and consist of a single hot wire and a single neutral wire.
  • A double pole breaker: This can handle 120 volts, 20 – 60 amps and consists of double hot wires that share a single neutral wire.

Let us take a little observation and look into detail the differences that exist between these two types of breakers and discuss when should you used each among of them

The single-pole breaker

This is a narrow switch that is installed on your home’s electrical panel.

Where is a single-pole breaker used?

  • For general lighting outlets
  • For curling irons and hair driers
  • For fans
  • For handling power tools
  • For handling vacuums
  • For handling air compressors
  • For handling outdoor lighting

How is it wired?

It is normally wired with a single hot wire and a single neutral wire. In case of overload within a single-pole breaker’s circuit, only that particular breaker will trip.

The double pole breaker

This is the broad/wide switch that is found within your home’s electrical panel.

Where is the double pole breaker used?

  • It is used in central air conditioner systems
  • It is also used in electric dryers
  • It can also be used in ranges
  • It is also used in electric heaters

The double pole breaker is able to serve the above appliances as well as the low-voltage circuits.

How is it wired?

The double pole breakers consist of two hot wires that are connected to a single neutral wire. This implies that in case of a short circuit in one of the poles’ hot wires, both will trip.

This type of breaker is able to serve two separate 120-volt circuits and it can serve a single 240—volt circuit like the central AC’s circuit.

Contact us

In case you have any questions or inquiries regarding anything problem that is related to electrical appliances and mechanisms, do not hesitate to call us. We have a team of experienced and professional electricians that will be happy to serve you. You can call our hotline or visit our office.

How Does An Interlock Differ From A Transfer Switch?

When comes to wiring a standby generator, there are always two options which are the interlock and the transfer switch. Each of the two has its advantages and disadvantages and each has its benefits and limitations as compared to the other. In this post, we will be analyzing these two devices.

An interlock kit requires human interference for it to operate. Besides, it is cheaper as compared to the transfer switch.

A transfer switch can be and is normally automatic. It is expensive as compared to the interlock kit.

An interlock kit can power any circuit within your home but you have to be careful not to overload your generator as the generator breaker will trip. You will have to turn other breakers on and off manually as the interlock kit is manually operated.

A transfer switch unit can only power certain circuits as it automatically operates and needs no human interference when turning on and off the circuits. This means that the loads that are connected to the generator are always less or equal to what that generator is able to handle and it cannot exceed the maximum capacity of the generator.

The interlock

An interlock is an electrical appliance that prevents a switch which is normally a circuit breaker from being switched on. This implies that it prevents that generator and utility power to be on at the same time. It works by making sure that the power sources can never be on at the same time. It is normally a simple, low-cost gadget that is operated manually.

In order to operate this device a user has to do the following

  1. Switch off the main circuit breaker
  2. Slide the interlock device by moving it up
  3. Switch off the back-fed generator breaker

Besides it might need the user to switch off some of the breakers within the panel, in case the generator is not able of supplying the entire load. Therefore, the interlocks may need some extra knowledge and understanding in order to operate it.

The transfer switch

A transfer switch is an electronic appliance or a group of appliances that enables you to switch between two or more power supply sources. It might be an automatic or manual appliance. It is identical to a single pole double throw switch and lets you e able to choose which power source should be used.

A double source transfer switch will consist of three positions:

  1. The utility (Util) – position
  2. The OFF position
  3. The Generator (Gen) – position

Normally transfer switches need special knowledge when it comes to connecting them. The best part is when it comes to operating them, they need little or no human interference as they are sometimes automatic.

Transfer switches are more expensive as compared to the interlock kits, and the automatic transfer switches are the most expensive ones. Despite the fact that they come to at a cost but they have the value for money as they are easy to use, convenient and they offer better safety.

Why Should You Install A Transfer Switch Or An Interlock Switch On Your Generator?

Normally during the fall when winter is around the corner many people start thinking back the same time last year when they had stayed without power for more than three days when there was a winter storm that had left them in extreme coldness as there was no electricity for powering the heaters as well as cooking. It does not mean that such an event occurs every year but sometimes you might find yourself in such a situation. Besides, there are many households that face this situation then you can imagine. So what should you do? You have to look for a portable generator that will be responsible for powering your home in case of a storm or power breakout. Many people never realize that installing a generator takes more than plugging a cord and starting it up. After you have purchased your generator for your home, you need to install a transfer switch or an interlock kit so that your home appliances should be safely powered. This needs to be done by a professional electrician.

Why should I install a transfer switch or an interlocking kit on my generator?

You might be among the people who have never heard about the transfer switch or an interlock kit. You might also be among those who just plug their generator directly into the appliances that need power. This might be a safety hazard for your home as you will have multiple cords that are coming into the home. Being cautious not to shut or slam the windows and doors on the extension cords is something to worry about as this can lead to a short in the cord and can lead to fire breakout. Besides, you cannot use extension cords to power some of the important things needed when there is a winter storm, just like your furnace fan that warms your home.

Some of the components might try to bypass the extension cords, and plug their generators within their electrical panel directly without installing a transfer switch or an interlock kit. In case you opt to plug in your generator within your electrical panel without having one of the two, as you could damage your generator, electrical panel, and your home appliances. Failing to install a transfer switch or an interlock kit can cause extreme injure to the people who are working upon the utility poles, as the electrical currents might be back-fed within the power lines.

What does a generator transfer refer to?

This is a device that lets you connect your generator upon your home’s wiring, and can be connected adjacent to your electrical panel directly into the intended outlet using a single cord. A transfer switch resembles a separate electrical panel, but normally it as a maximum of 6-8 circuit breakers. The transfer switch lets you power the circuits that need most such as the heating system, sump pump, refrigerator and many more. You are able to select which circuits would you want to power via the transfer switch with the generator, but remember not all circuits that are within your main electrical panel.

The mechanism of a generator transfer switch

A generator transfer switch works in protecting your utility power as well as the generator power from operating within the same time. in a situation where the power goes out and you need to use your generator, you would need to plug it into a transfer switch through an external power inlet box, then switch the general on and then flip the switches on from the utility to the generator position on each circuit. When you want to install a generator transfer switch, make sure you bring in a licensed electrician to re-wire the existing circuits of your main electrical panel.

What does a generator interlock kit refer to?

This is identical to a transfer switch as it is a device that lets you power on your generator via your home’s electrical wiring system. The difference between an interlock kit and a transfer switch is that an interlock kit lets you power anything within your home as it is not limited to just 6-8 circuit breakers.

The mechanism of a generator interlock kit

A generator interlock kit is quite different from a transfer switch as it is a separate electrical panel. an interlock kit is a unit made of slide plates that are attached directly onto the existing main electric panel. It makes sure that the utility power, as well as the generator power, will never be on within the same time. In case the power goes out, just turn off the main circuit breaker as well as the individual circuit breakers which are on your main electrical panel. Switch on your generator and the slide the interlock plate on the main electrical panel. Now plug in your generator in the power inlet box, then power on your generator breaker and then turn on the individual breakers on the main electrical panel that you need to use. Make sure you do not turn on everything as you might end up overloading the generator.

Conclusion

It depends on your taste and preference as well as the type of the main circuit breaker that is installed within your home when it comes to which option to use for powering your generator. The interlock kit is cheaper as compared to the transfer switch. This is because the interlock kit is not a separate panel and does not need rewiring of the existing circuits. Some people will decide to go with the interlock kit as it offers multiple options since it powers any location within your home; but be careful that you do not overload your generator when using the interlock kit. This is a reason behind why some home owners decide to go for the expensive option which is the transfer switch as they do not need to be struggling in choosing which circuits should they switch on without overloading the generator. But it all depends on your preference and budget.