Posted Wed Jun 4, 2008, 8:28am Subject: Re: Power Conversion-220v to 110v
I think that what the company told you is getting a bit fuzzy. In Europe 220 Volts 50 Hz is standard. In the US we have 110 Volts and 220 Volts both 60 Hz. The standard recepticles which you see are for 110 Volts. 220 Volt recepticles are the large ones you see for clothes dryers, electric ranges, arc welders, and other high demand loads.
A transformer will not change "European" 50 Hz to "American" 60 Hz or vice virsa. A rotary converter (big machine) or electronics would be required to do that.
The frequency out of the transformer is the same as what goes in. 60 Hz requires a slightly smaller transformer than 50 Hz for the same load. A 60 Hz transformer will work on 50 Hz if there is sufficient margin (enough iron). A 50 Hz transformer should have an easy time on 60 Hz.
What I am saying is the Europe / USA story is bogus. If your espresso machine requires 30 Amp service at 220 Volts, the transformer will have to be 220 V times 30 Amps = 6600 VA. That is a big transformer. Also the 110 Volt input will have to be 60 Amp service. There may be such a thing as 110 Volt 60 Amp service but I have never seen it.
If you are outdoors with this setup and 220 Volt service is out of the question, you might consider a gasoline powered generator of sufficient size. The large ones have 220 Volts as well as 110 volts output.
By the way what we call 110 Volts in this contry is more like 120 Volts typically and 220 Volts is more like 240 Volts. I don't know if European 220 Volts is closer to 220 Volts.
Thanks for all the answers everyone, but it turns out it can't be done.
I went ahead and got the european converter/transformer stepup/stepdown. I plugged it in, and the power cord got REALLY hot. So then i called the company (which i should have done first) and they explained to me that European 220v is NOT the same as American 220v.
So what I am trying to say is that you can convert 220v european to or from 110v american
but you cannot convert 220v american to 110v american
i hope this helps someone. I learned alot about electricity along the way :)
Europe is (nominally) 230v rather than 220v, however, that's only a benchmark, and supplies are allowed to deviate from it - I think it's something like minus 6%/plus 8% which is a compromise to cover most of the legacy infrastructure installed before the standard was adopted. UK, for example was 240v nominal, and my domestic supply runs right at the top end at around 248.
treston Senior Member Joined: 15 Aug 2006 Posts: 10 Location: Ireland Expertise: Just starting
Posted Thu Jun 5, 2008, 12:41am Subject: Re: Power Conversion-220v to 110v
If your espresso machine requires 30 Amp service at 220 Volts, the transformer will have to be 220 V times 30 Amps = 6600 VA. That is a big transformer. Also the 110 Volt input will have to be 60 Amp service.
That is correct Power=voltage x current so if the unit really does draw 30A @220V that is 6.6kW. It is probably not drawing that much, the power usage should be on the machines rating plate.
For a given max current the power is determined by the voltage. So most manufaturers of heating equpiment or high power tools will take advantage of this. So most 220V equpiment will be a lot higher power than the 110V equivalent. Meaning it is far easier to get a transformer and outlet that can handle a 110V device at 220V, rather than vice versa.
The company is either ignorant or lying about the EU/USA 220V thing, probably sent the wrong thing by mistake.
A bigger problem would be replacing heating elements, since they are basically a wire of fixed resistance. A 110V 1.5kW element plugged into a 220V supply will output 6kW (many would wrongly guess 3kW) and it would burn out quickly, and a 220V 3kW element plugged into a 110V supply will ouput 750W and would not burn out.
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