Asked in Electrical EngineeringElectrical Wiring
Why does the neutral run hot and burn?
November 22, 2010 5:25PM
Is this question asking about a neutral in a single-phase or a three-phase service?
Answer for a single-phase service
If it is in a single-phase service the neutral wire could run hot because it is overloaded and the circuit breaker has not tripped to cut off the current? That could happen if the ampacity of the breaker is either too big for the application or because the breaker itself has a fault.
Another cause could be that the neutral wire has been damaged or has become frayed so that it overheats when carrying the full amount of current - drawn by the appliance from the hot wire - back to the power station.
Answer for a three-phase service
If this question is asking about a three-phase Y-connected service then the neutral wire will run hot if there is an imbalance of currents drawn by the load from the 3 incoming service lines or one of the lines has become disconnected from the load.
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.
IF YOU ARE NOT ALREADY SURE YOU CAN DO THIS JOB
SAFELY AND COMPETENTLY
REFER THIS WORK TO QUALIFIED PROFESSIONALS.