DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Electrical and Wiring > Is it possible to check baseboard heater without supply wires and thermostat?




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Old 09-21-2012, 01:33 PM  
vikasintl
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Default Is it possible to check baseboard heater without supply wires and thermostat?

Without connecting thermostat or supply wires..how can I just check the heater if its working... ...is there any way we can check using ohmmeter ...(resistance)...

if yes...please explain how...

if its not possible to check without power supply to it...please explain how to connect power to it..without involving thermostat.



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Old 09-21-2012, 01:42 PM  
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Put the ohm meter across the two wires from the heater and see if there is continuity. You might even be able to find out what the resistance should be by checking the manufactures sight. If not then watts divided by volts should give you a rough idea of what it should be.
If the last test checks out then you should test from each line to ground. It should be open with no connection.



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Old 09-21-2012, 01:52 PM  
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Clarification...which two wires I should check ? two wires from the heater means one element wire and other wire in wireway or one end of element to other end of element?

also how which line I should check to ground? element wire and other heater wire which is in wireway?

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Old 09-21-2012, 03:10 PM  
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If there is heater element continuity then checking either end of the heater to ground is enough.

If you know the heater rated voltage and rated power in watts then the element hot resistance is (V^2)/P and the cold resistance as measured by an ohmmeter is within a few percent of this value.

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Old 09-23-2012, 01:21 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wuzzat? View Post
If there is heater element continuity then checking either end of the heater to ground is enough.

If you know the heater rated voltage and rated power in watts then the element hot resistance is (V^2)/P and the cold resistance as measured by an ohmmeter is within a few percent of this value.

Ok voltage is 240v and watts is 1500 so..as per your instruction it should be 38.4 ohms

is this for hot or cold?

when I check cold resistance between two ends of element wires...it showed 35.6...is this within range?
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Old 09-23-2012, 07:07 PM  
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That resistance reading sounds reasonable to me.

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Old 09-24-2012, 03:49 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vikasintl View Post
Ok voltage is 240v and watts is 1500 so..as per your instruction it should be 38.4 ohms

is this for hot or cold?

when I check cold resistance between two ends of element wires...it showed 35.6...is this within range?
It depends on what your heater element is made of (possibly Nichrome) and how hot it gets during use and the "temperature coefficient of resistance" for your element.
The baseboard maker probably has a financial incentive to slightly overstate the wattage. Not many people will catch him and even fewer would sue for breach of contract or some such thing.
If you also have an ammeter you can check both voltage and current (about 6A) and determine the hot resistance.
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Old 09-25-2012, 06:48 PM  
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Ok thanks...the other heater wire which is in wireway it shows continuity but the reading is only 0.06 at 200 ohms setting...is this ok? or something is wrong?

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Old 09-25-2012, 06:59 PM  
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If there is no short to ground just plug the damn thing in and try it. You are over thinking this.

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Old 09-26-2012, 10:12 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeD View Post
If there is no short to ground just plug the damn thing in and try it. You are over thinking this.
Yes.
If it heats
and does not have the case energized with 120V with respect to ground
and this 120v if it exists is a phantom voltage
and the heater does not trip a breaker
it almost certainly is OK.

I would have measured the element resistance and checked for many, many, megohms from the element to the case, then plugged it in and checked the case for not being energized.
That's Due Diligence and a Duty of Care in my book.


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