Scary question. If you don't know why a single breaker would only
supply 120V and do not understand about dual breakers using both legs, you
should not be that close to the breaker box.
At least find a good book on the subject and get an basic understanding
of how it all works before you do anything other than to rest a breaker (and
only do that once, it if needs it more often than that, it needs to be
If on the other hand you do understand and you only forgot to note that
you were measuring voltage from a double breaker then I suggest that one
half of the breaker has tipped or the is a fault in the box.
Thats because ithe circuit was wired for and is a 110volt circuit.
It is a single phase circuit. To get 220 volts you must have a circuit
wired to two phases of 110 volts each. Unles, and it doesn't seem so,
You know what you are doing, get a quailfied electrician to do the
wireing, as you could electrocute yourself. Or burn your house down.
ELECTRICITY is an unforgiving force!!!!!!
Is it a double pole breaker that was giving you 240volt and then stopped, or
a newly installed breaker that should deliver 240 volt. If it is a new
installation , be sure you are using a double pole breaker, which is one
that connects to two different busses of your panel, as opposed to a split
breaker, which connects to one buss of the panel and has places for two
wires to attach to it
You could measure 110 from one leg to return. I really don't understand
what he was saying. Is he getting 110 from hot to hot or from one hot
I have seen a breaker half tripped. Had to turn it all the way off and
back on again to set both sides.
Thinking about it a bit more. If half of a breaker pair is tripped and
if there is any kind of a load, like a lamp or motor, between that line
and return he could measure 110 volts between the two hot lines.
For example in a dryer there are 110 volt timers and motors. Only the
heater is between the two hot lines.
That is supposed to be what you get on each leg. If you don't understand
it, get professional help before you get into trouble.
You don't give enough information for anything more than that as an answer.
New breaker? Old breaker that you tested in the past? Are you checking at
the breaker or at a down-line portion of the circuit?
I had the same problem (but maybe different cause). In my case: there
are two underground wires coming into the house which together provide
240. One was compromised/cut by a fence installer. The remaining one
only provided 120 to the house including 240 volt appliances. So oven
etc did not work.
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