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Answered 2011-07-21 08:22:46

For USA, Canada and countries running a 60 Hz supply service.

1) An outlet for 240V is totally different from a regular 120V outlet.

2) The wiring for 240V is also much heavier than for 120V.

3) The double pole circuit breaker necessary for 240V is different to the single pole breaker used for 120V.

4) Anyway it is not clear why you would want to try to change a 240V outlet to a 120V type?

5) If you could log in and add some more details below here so we knew your reasoning for wanting this change to take place, someone may be able to assist you much further.


The reason why I need to do this is because there is only one 3-prong 240V outlet in the water heater closet feeding an inline water heater and I want to install an instant hot water recycling system which runs on 120v I so need the extra power outlet.


If you want to keep the existing 240V water heater then you cannot add another outlet to the circuit, not even a 240V one, let alone a 120V one!

The wiring and its circuit breaker is only rated to carry the current for one water heater and nothing else. If you add another appliance to the circuit you risk causing a house fire: the breaker may buzz but not trip so that the wiring gets hotter and hotter until something catches on fire!

So, if you are planning to buy a new hot water recycling system it surely deserves to be installed safely and correctly?

So why not, for your instant hot water recycling system, have a licensed electrician install a separate 120V circuit with the correct breaker, the correct-sized cable and the correct outlet near to the existing 240V outlet?


As always, if you are in doubt about what to do, the best advice anyone should give you is to call a licensed electrician to advise what work is needed.

Before you do any work yourself,

on electrical circuits, equipment or appliances,

always use a test meter to ensure the circuit is, in fact, de-energized.




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