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Can you take a 240v 20a garage outlet number 12 with 4 wires and split it into two 120v circuits while still keeping the 240v outlet?

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2015-07-15 20:54:57
2015-07-15 20:54:57
for USA, Canada and countries using similar 60Hz mains suppliesI'm not sure if the National Electrical Code is okay with it, but it is possible. Make sure you have a 20 Amp Double Pole breaker in the panel. Then, at the 240V outlet: You may need more room to accomodate all the wiring, so get a box extension, or if possible, upgrade to a larger box or use a junction box before the 240V outlet. Okay, Take the incoming neutral wire and connect it to the 2 120V circuits and to the 240V outlet. Connect the incoming red hot wire to a black 120V hot wire. Connect the 240V Black hot wire to the other 120V's hot wire. Connect all the ground wires together. Make sure that the box is grounded as well. Here's a simple formula for calculating the current you can use. Remember that the 120V circuits take current from one leg or the other, while the 240V Circuit takes from both. Since you have 2 120V 20A circuits, multiply the amps of the equipment you can use by 1. Now, multiply the 240V equipment's amps by 2. Add the values together. The value should be less than 32, and definitely not higher than 40.

I recommend installing a 120/240V twistlok plug in the box. Then you can plug whatever you want into it. I made a nice distribution panel with 15A breakers for when I want 120V, and 240 can plug in directly. ( I use this method to power my Christmas lights. 2kW. :P)

IF YOU ARE NOT ALREADY SURE YOU CAN DO THIS JOB

SAFELY AND COMPETENTLY

REFER THIS WORK TO QUALIFIED PROFESSIONALS.

If you do this work yourself, always turn off the powerat the breaker box/fuse panel BEFORE you attempt to do any work AND always use a meter or voltage indicator to insure the circuit is, in fact, de-energized.

If there are only 3 wires entering the box, you can't legally do it. You can not use the same wire for a neutral and a protective ground. The 3 wires are the two hot phases and the protective ground.

If there are 4 wires in the box, or if metal conduit provides the protective ground in addition to 3 wires, you can do it, provided the breaker is a double pole breaker. The white wire is the neutral, the bare one is the protective ground

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