# Getting 110 volts in a 220 volt Pumphouse

My pump house is fed with 2 conductors and a bare ground. Can I create 110 volts for a light without running another cable?
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110
Not safely or to code.
You would need to replace the 2 conductor (w/ground) with a 3 conductor (w/ground) so you will have the nuetural.. The ground shouldn't be use as the nuetral.
steve
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why not? the the neutral just goes to the ground wire in the panel. what difference does it make if you run an extra wire that's simply connected to the ground wire some dozen meters away?
what if the ground is "grounded" some more in the pumphouse? (let's say it's attached to a rod going in the ground) would that make a difference?
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Isn't this the 10th or 20th time this week?
Because if something ever goes wrong with the "ground used as neutral", then everything grounded on that circuit goes "hot". Let's say you tried that stunt with a furnace. If that bare wire opened (can you say "dumb contractor thinking hand twisting ground wires is enough"?), your duct work would become live. Water pump? Then your plumbing goes live.

Ground rods usually make surprisingly poor contact with the dirt. Infact, it just made it more dangerous. If some thing goes wrong with that "ground used as neutral", then you're trying to pump power into the dirt. Probably _not_ enough to trip the breaker. But perhaps amply adequate to simply electrocute you if you step in the wrong place, or start a fire. And of course, all the grounded stuff on that circuit is live.
Neutral != safety ground, even though they're connected together (once) in the main panel.
--
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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contractor
couldn't this happen anyway "if something goes wrong with the ground" ? after all, they are connected together in the panel, if something goes wrong on one neutral, all other neutrals and grounds will equally suffer.
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Not at all.
Take the OPs situation. It's a dark and stormy night, there's rain water everywhere. You've used the ground as a neutral. A squirrel chews thru the ground wire between the shed and the panel.
And the pump quits for some reason. If it's a 120V pump, it'd quit simply because the ground is gone.
So, you tramp out into the dark and stormy night, flick the light switch "Ah nuts, the bulb's blown", lean over and touch the pump.
The next thing you hear is harp strings. Because the hot wire fed thru the bulb, into the now "disconnected from the panel" grounding system in the shed, and hence to the pump housing. You touch it completing the circuit thru all the wet stuff, and you're dead. Probably didn't draw enough current to even make the bulb flash.
Instead, if it's wired properly and the ground separates, the ground is at worst "floating", and touching the pump housing will not give you a shock unless something else is also wrong.
In other words, using the ground as a neutral (or vice-versa) means you're betting your life that that that one wire remains connected.
To make the hazard doubly clear, by connecting the neutral and ground together, that's implicitly connecting everything "grounded" to one side of the circuit in a vastly more hazardous way than that one neutral-ground interconnect in the panel.[*]
When wired properly (separate ground and neutral), at _least_ two faults are needed to make it dangerous (a ground separation _and_ a hot-ground short).
[*] but of course, ground/neutral (especially open service neutral) faults in the panel are extremely dangerous too. But the interconnect is essential if you want a hot-to-ground short to trip the breaker.
--
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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The night was sultry!
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On 09 Jan 2004 00:06:05 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (HA HA Budys Here) wrote:

That's funny. Now really, youse guys making fun like. I do declare. Now what did I do with that 440 volt panel? joevan
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My advice is dont take advice on this from a newsgroup. Way too dangerous an operation for you and for your property. Get a licenced electrician.
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x-no-archive: yes
Steve wrote:

I'm not advising you to do this; just some things for you to think about:
What size is the ground wire? You said "pumphouse", which is a new structure, so maybe you can use the 3-wires like a service entrance and bond the ground and neutral again and can do what you want "legally." But a whole lot of rules apply and it would be a PITA.
Do you have a metal well casing, or plastic?
Take a look at fused switch "LSSU" on page 3: http://www.littelfuse.com/PDFs/PowrGard_CAT/MiscProducts.pdf
Especially if I had a #10 or larger ground wire, I would be tempted to use LSSU, or LSOX and a snap switch, and wire a single bare-bulb light fixture using the ground wire as a neutral. And ground everything to the well casing. It's no worse than a 3-wire electric stove or clothes dryer circuit.
Can you find 220V light bulbs? That would be the kosher way to light the pumphouse, but the bulbs are very expensive and hard to find in the US. Or maybe you can find a 220V fluorescent fixture.
Best regards, Bob
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Also not to code - but just string two 110 volt bulbs in series... Benefit, you get two lights. Disadvantage - when one blows both go out.

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Steve wrote:

Y'all have some religious objection to a transformer?
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Goedjn wrote:

Have you ever tried to find a 220V to 110V transformer? That was gonna be my suggestion until I spent 15 minutes on google trying to find one. Everything is packaged as an "international voltage adapter" rather than just a transformer you can wire up yourself like a doorbell transformer.
Bob
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http://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Main_Index/Transformer_Index/USA_110volt_Convertor_Transformer/index.html
--Goedjn
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Goedjn wrote:

http://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Main_Index/Transformer_Index/USA_110volt_Convertor_Transformer/index.html
Could probably find a lot of them in the luggage section at your local wal-mart. travel converters would be what they would call them there.
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zxcvbob wrote:

Ten minutes, found at least two that looked viable. Here's a link to one of them: http://www.surplussales.com/Transformers/HvLvTr-5.html
Look at the bottom right, the one labled (TP) N6U. Only \$10. Rated for 1.74 amps, which should be more than enough for a light bulb.
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C G wrote:

Careful; that's an autotransformer. Take a look at the low-power isolation transformers on this page: http://www.surplussales.com/Transformers/IsolationXmers.html
(TP) 9100-4342 ought to do it for \$12.
Bob
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How many you want? What VA? I will have them by noon tomorrow! You just need to know where to look, and no, Google is not the place to look! Greg
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110
Well, obviously you could get a 240v bulb; they do exist. I don't know of any code this would violate, but I could be wrong about it... You could run the 240v through 2 bulbs of the same wattage in series. That is essentially what you are doing when you change a motor from 120v to 240v.
Okay, now everyone chip in with all the code sections it violates.
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Your wish is my command. -- Tom H
210.6 Branch-Circuit Voltage Limitations. The nominal voltage of branch circuits shall not exceed the values permitted by 210.6(A) through (E). (A) Occupancy Limitation. In dwelling units and guest rooms of hotels, motels, and similar occupancies, the voltage shall not exceed 120 volts, nominal, between conductors that supply the terminals of the following: (1)    Luminaires (lighting fixtures) (2)    Cord-and-plug-connected loads 1440 volt-amperes, nominal, or less or less than 1/4 hp
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