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Among all the factors that need to be considered when buying an indoor air conditioner, voltage is one of the most important. Air conditioners operate on two types of circuits: 120 volts or standard American sockets and 220 volts, heavy-duty sockets used for large equipment such as clothes dryers. But is 220v AC better than 110v AC? The following is the complete description of it.
110v vs 220v
When comparing 110V and 220V wiring, it must be remembered that they all basically do the same thing. That is, it generates energy to power the electrical outlet. The formula is as follows: “power = voltage x current” and the current is in amperes. When using 220V wires, the current required is less than 110V wires. Power is measured in watts. Therefore, to obtain 900 watts of power, using a 220-volt wire will require 4.1 amperes, and using a 110-volt wire will require approximately 8.2 amperes.
Although both high current and high voltage may be dangerous in the event of an electric shock, the current required for a fatal electric shock may be less than 80 mA. Therefore, high current is more dangerous than high voltage. However, because the voltage is proportional to the amperage (provided the same resistance is provided), 110V wires are generally considered safer because they use lower voltages and can only carry half the current of 220V wires.
As mentioned above, although 220V does require less current to provide the same power, it can still take more current and bring a greater risk of serious injury.
Difference between 110v and 220v plugs
In order to operate a 220V AC power supply, you will need 220V current, which flows directly from the circuit breaker’s wires to the 220V socket. In short, 220V circuit is 2 110V circuits together. Although your entire family may not have a 220-volt electrical outlet, this is the type of plug that is commonly used in the kitchen for appliances such as dishwashers and ovens.
If you plug a 220v air conditioner into a 110v socket, at least the fuse will be blown. You may also damage the air conditioner, or worse, cause an electrical fire. Yes, you can immediately hire an HVAC technician or a licensed electrician to convert a 110v socket to a 220v socket.
Which voltage is better?
It depends on the purpose. For households, 110 volt is better because most loads consume less energy. On the other hand, 220v suitable for a higher power. In a 110-volt country/region, a 60-watt light bulb requires about 0.54 amperes of current. In contrast, in a country/region with a voltage of 220 volts, the same light bulb requires 0.27 amperes of current.
Which is more efficient?
After installing the current level in the home, the voltage must be increased to provide energy because the 220V wire can provide the required boost. Similarly, due to the increase in voltage, the current efficiency of 220-volt power is higher because less power is required to provide the same power.
However, as mentioned earlier, this increase also means that the safety hazard of 220 volts is higher than 110 volts. The main advantages of using 220 volts are that the wires are simpler, easier to operate, and cheaper materials are used. The house can accommodate data—hundreds of thousands of meters of cables. If you apply 110 volts, you need a thicker cable, which is expensive.
Can 220v AC run on 110v?
If the 220v air conditioner is plugged into a 120v power outlet, the fuse will be blown. If the air conditioner is damaged, it may cause an electrical fire. At any given time, you can ask a licensed technician or electrician to convert your socket to 220 volts; for 220-volt lines, one line is connected to the 110-volt phase, and the other line is connected to the 110-volt phase. As for the functions of 110V and 220V, your problem is not the system voltage but the cooling capacity.
220v AC is more efficient
When running for the same long period, the efficiency of a 120-volt air conditioner and a 220-volt air conditioner are about the same, and the power used is about the same.
If placed improperly, both types of equipment will not work properly-120V; air conditioners are ineffective and will consume too much power when placed in a room that is too large for them, while 220V air conditioners placed in a smaller room will reduce efficiency. In order to ensure the maximum efficiency of the air conditioner, please make the BTU match the room size.
BTU in 110v AC
What is BTU? BTU stands for British thermal unit. A British thermal unit needs to reduce the temperature of a pound of water in one minute. The highest Btu that a 110v window AC can generate is 15,000 BTU.
The British thermal unit you need depends on the size of the space you want to cool. For example, a 15,000 BTU aircon unit is not able to cool a 100 square foot living room better if compare to a 5,000 BTU unit. It will make the room cool unevenly, and the cycle time is too short. Always measure the room to be cooled and use the volume to determine the required BTU.
If you want to learn more on btu calculation formula for air conditioner, please refer to our previous BTU guide for more info.
What size of wire used in 220v AC?
Wire gauge is a gauge of wire thickness; the smaller the scale, the thicker the wire. If you want to connect 220V and 20A power sockets to supply power to the electric tools, you can use the same No. 12 wire as the 110V 20A circuit.
Remember that the cable must contain an additional hot wire. If the current consumed by the device is 30 A, you need to use another type of bowl, the wire gauge of the cable should be 10 gauge, and in the store, the label of the cable should be 10 AWG.
Moving on, for a 40-amp circuit, you need eight AWG cables, and for a 50-amp circuit, you need six AWG cables. In all cases, a 3-core cable is required, which actually has 4 wires, because although the ground needs to be considered as a conductor, it is still grounded. Make sure to purchase rated outlets and cables for the current consumption of the device.
Do you want to learn how to wire a 220 outlet for air conditioner too?