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Old 02-18-2010, 08:54 AM   #1
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How much voltage loss is acceptable?


I understand how to easily calculate voltage drop using a calculator like this:

http://www.csgnetwork.com/voltagedropcalc.html

How do I know if the loss I calculate is acceptable? At what percent loss would one consider using larger wire? Or is it specifically determined by what you are going to be doing at the other end of the wire?

Thanks.

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Old 02-18-2010, 09:27 AM   #2
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How much voltage loss is acceptable?


I'm not sure code dictates what is allowed...I have heard anywhere from 3-5% is OK
But in can depend upon the use
Incandescent lights will work OK on lower voltage & will last longer
So a long run down a driveway the voltage drop might be OK
But if at the end of the run is an electronic gate/motor then voltage drop might not be OK

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Old 02-18-2010, 10:21 AM   #3
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How much voltage loss is acceptable?


Here's at least one source for additional information.
http://www.psihq.com/iread/faqvolt.htm

The basic summary is that the NEC wants there to be no more than a 5% voltage loss on the farthest outlet of a fully loaded circuit (6 volts) The FAQ page makes it sound like there isn't a code specification on the issue, just a footnoted recomendation.
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:35 AM   #4
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How much voltage loss is acceptable?


correct. The NEC does not demand anything concerning this. A FPN (fine print note) is only a recommendation, suggestion, or clarification. It holds no enforceable weight.
Quote:
How much voltage loss is acceptable?-voltage-drop-fpn.jpg
Take note that there is a suggest 3% max voltage drop on branch circuits

and a 5% max voltage drop on feeders and branch circuits combined.

and that is to the furthest outlet.
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:36 AM   #5
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How much voltage loss is acceptable?


Thanks, good info here.
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:54 AM   #6
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How much voltage loss is acceptable?


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Old 02-18-2010, 11:01 AM   #7
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Old 02-18-2010, 11:15 AM   #8
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