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Foreign electrical power converter
By Dave Rongey
Summary: Electrical Power Question: I've got a challenge. Before I left the states, I purchased a Frigidaire stackable washer/dryer, model FEX831FS1 to be used in Jordan.
Foreign Electrical Power Converter
Electrical Power Question:
I've got a challenge. Before I left the states, I purchased a Frigidaire stackable washer/dryer, model FEX831FS1 to be used in Jordan.
In the reading I've done I realize that going from 60 to 50 will result in:
The motor turns 17% slower The internal current goes up by 17%
The power (watt) goes down with 17 %
The mechanical cooling is less, because of 17% less turns
The result is a higher current, then designed by the manufacturer and the insulation of the electrical wiring deteriorate much quicker, which after sometime results in a burn-out.
I know the unit is not intended to operate here, but returning the unit would not be cost efficient, so I just need to get it to operate.
Is there a way to get this unit to operate here in Jordan?
Todd S Mafraq, Jordan.
Hi Todd - Great Question!
I looked over the Installation Guide which you attached and could not identify your specific unit, not a problem though - you need to tell me if your unit uses Gas or if it is all Electric. we have to establish the specific Voltage and Load of the unit to try to find a converter.
I believe Jordan is 230 Volt, 50 Hz as you mentioned and the 50 Hz will cause the motor to run warmer than normal, not cooler.
Here is a link to help identify which plug configuration you have for the unit: http://users.pandora.be/worldstandards/electricity.htm#plugs_c
I just Googled your Model # and it looks like it is all electric.
The concern is that it appears that the washer motor and Cycle Timer is 120 Volts - not good. If all the components were 230 Volt it would have better longevity, but only time will tell.
You will also experience the timing of the wash and dry cycles to be off a little. Todd, all I will be able to do is to Google for a converter that would work for you. Outside of that you could see about swapping out the motors, but I think that would be more trouble and money that it is worth.
Another idea is to find someone who is returning to the states and see if they could buy your unit. If you are in the military, they may be able to ship it for free or low cost (?). Identify the Plug Configuration from the link above and lets see what your will be plugging into.
One thing for sure is that your unit will need a third prong to create the neutral for the 120 Volt devices. Let me know what you think - I'll do my best to find a converter for you. I know what your up against - I've worked on projects in the Philippines and Brazil and burnt up a lot of equipment from the states.
Let me know - ok?
From: Todd S Dave,
Thanks for the timeliness of your reply.
Yes, it is an electric unit. I believe it is the type C.
I'm checking with a local friend here to see if any of the others can be used. I just looked back at my original email requesting the unit from the salesman and I made the mistake of requesting a 220v. I should have requested a 230v. On this unit for clarification, is the dryer 220 volt and the wash machine 110 volt .or are they both 220 volt.
Correct me if I'm wrong on this, but with a 110 you have 2 phase wires and with a 220 you have 1 phase wire and 1 neutral. Can this only be hooked up one way over the other? I won't have the luxury of being able to sell it. I'll have to use it. Attached is the wiring diagram of the unit.
Thanks, Todd, Thank you so much for your help.
Todd I believe you'll have problems using this unit with the type C plug.
The reason is because the type C plug has no provision for a Ground or Neutral. The Ground and Neutral are bonded at the Main Service Panel, and this conductor is needed for the 110 Volt components of your unit, as mentioned before.
If I read the attached schematic correctly, the only components using 220 Volt are the Heating Elements and the Dryer Motor, everything else is 110Volt. So what you actually have is a split system, but the majority of the control functions are 110Volt.
For clarification - 220 or 230 Volt used to be 2 lines (phases) of 110-115Volts and a Ground - a 3-wire system. Now because of the code changes all new units like this are a 4-wire system - its the same as the 3-wire, only requiring a separate insulated Neutral. Yes there are still a lot of 3-wire units working just fine, as you see in the installation manual.
In many cases the Ground and Neutral become bonded internally in the unit, but I expect this will change soon with newer units and the 3-wire units will be obsolete.
Also - the type C plug has limited amperage and may not provide the amperage your unit requires 30 amps at 240 volts which will actually be more because your voltage is lower. The lower the voltage the higher the amperage and this requires the correct wire size, otherwise you could overheat the wire.
Find a local reliable electrician who can help you with this, that would be my suggestion. They would most likely install a separate 3-wire circuit with the ground or neutral your unit requires. Tests must be taken to verify each power leg to ground and the 3rd conductor, but also verify the integrity of the ground path.
Just be safe, and don't take a chance until you are sure the unit has what it requires, and the service is right and safe all around. I'll be hitting the hay for now - almost 3 a.m. but I will check email tomorrow.
Best Wishes, Dave Rongey
Daves Companion Guide to Home Electrical Wiring