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Old 09-01-2010, 04:16 PM   #1
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electric damper question


when a damper is "turned on" (ex: has power to it) and is in a certain position, is it constantly drawing some power, and is it getting "wear and tear"? I'm thinking they work kinda like an electromagnet, or is it smarter then that?

I have a small project I might do with electric dampers but wondering if there are any issues with having a damper be on very long. I'm guessing I'm worrying for nothing, but just want to know from a pro.

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Old 09-01-2010, 06:03 PM   #2
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Most are power open and spring close. And those all use electric as long as they are open.

There are others that don't use electric while open. They also cost more up front.

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Old 09-01-2010, 06:16 PM   #3
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electric damper question


the motors used in a damper is designed to draw a minimal current when stalled. Such dampers are used in air ducts in commercial buildings all the time for when the duct breaches a fire wall. They are designed to last a very long time.

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I'm thinking they work kinda like an electromagnet, or is it smarter then that?
Nope. Dumber than that. The motor simply stalls once it reaches the stop but it is designed for that purpose and as such, is not harmed by the action.
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Old 09-01-2010, 06:19 PM   #4
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the motors used in a damper is designed to draw a minimal current when stalled. Such dampers are used in air ducts in commercial buildings all the time for when the duct breaches a fire wall. They are designed to last a very long time.

Nope. Dumber than that. The motor simply stalls once it reaches the stop but it is designed for that purpose and as such, is not harmed by the action.
Fire dampers are spring loaded. Open 24/7 except when heat melts the fusable link that keeps it open. No motor.
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Old 09-01-2010, 06:29 PM   #5
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Fire dampers are spring loaded. Open 24/7 except when heat melts the fusable link that keeps it open. No motor.
My mistake:

smoke dampers.

actually I didn't make any mistake. I never called them fire dampers. I retract my claim to a mistake.
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Old 09-01-2010, 07:26 PM   #6
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electric damper question


Good to know they are designed to last long time even when open then. I'm guessing the current drawn is very small as well.

Probably won't do this project this year anyway, was more or less just thinking of how and if I'll do it.

Also do they make A/B dampers? Ex: on, flow goes to A, off, flow goes to B. my plan is to make my own using two dampers (a "normally on" and a "normally off" connected together) but if they make em probably cheaper.
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Old 09-01-2010, 08:18 PM   #7
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My mistake:

smoke dampers.

actually I didn't make any mistake. I never called them fire dampers. I retract my claim to a mistake.
Smoke dampers in a fire wall? Hmmm.
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Old 09-01-2010, 08:19 PM   #8
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No, they don't make AB type dampers.
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Old 09-01-2010, 09:28 PM   #9
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Smoke dampers in a fire wall? Hmmm.
I didn't want to get into a huge discussion about smoke walls, fire walls, dual rated smoke/fire walls, fire dampers, smoke dampers, and combination smoke/fire dampers and more but if you really want to, I can. I spent enough time studying and utilizing in the field the UL white papers on wall ratings, UL listed fire and smoke stopping, fire alarm systems (that are used to activate smoke or fire/smoke rated dampers) and more that I can speak comfortably about such systems.

Red squirrel was asking about motor operated dampers so I was trying to limit my input to that and not be so concerned about being so damned exact concerning fire and smoke control systems but if you want to expand it, have at it.
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Old 09-02-2010, 04:44 AM   #10
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Red squirrel was asking about motor operated dampers so I was trying to limit my input to that and not be so concerned about being so damned exact concerning fire and smoke control systems but if you want to expand it, have at it.

When people read through post later. And see someone say fire dampers are motorized. They will go and try to buy motorized fire dampers.

Accuracy is some what important in answers.

Just like placing a fire wall. Put it on the wrong side of a hall, and it not only doesn't pass inspection, but is kind of useless.
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Old 09-02-2010, 09:31 AM   #11
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electric damper question


We use a lot of Belimo damper motors (better defined as: actuators).

These can be gotten with various torque ratings depending on the size of the damper being actuated. Keep in mind we do commercial work, so these are usually large multi-blade dampers that we build in either parallel or opposed blade configurations.
They are also available in 120V or 24V versions and as either normally open or normally closed. In each case the fail-safe blade position is achieved using an internal spring in the event of power failure or smoke alarm.

The power consumed by these motors to maintain, or hold the blade(s) in the open position is 6.5VA for the 120V motor and 3.5VA for the 24V motor.
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Old 09-02-2010, 12:22 PM   #12
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electric damper question


I use Belimos for zone dampers, Mucho Dollaros though
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Old 09-02-2010, 12:28 PM   #13
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Mucho Dollaros though
Yep, start out at about $275 and go up from there. Most of the ones we use are in the $425-$525 range.
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Old 09-02-2010, 12:33 PM   #14
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And the da*m things use metric allen keys etc. Honeywell to Belimo with my old school keys did not go so well.
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Old 09-02-2010, 03:35 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
When people read through post later. And see someone say fire dampers are motorized. They will go and try to buy motorized fire dampers.

Accuracy is some what important in answers.

Just like placing a fire wall. Put it on the wrong side of a hall, and it not only doesn't pass inspection, but is kind of useless.
You can buy motorized fire dampers. They also happen to be smoke dampers as well but the fact is, they are also fire dampers. If one wants to use them as only a fire damper, they can.

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