Loading...

The US electrical system is not 120V

  • 🎬 Video
  • ℹ️ Description
It's more than 120V. It's even more than the other 120V! It is the sum of the two (and sometimes a different two!) that makes us who we are. Learn about the US electrical system in this not-at-all snarky video!

Would you care for some links?

Firstly are foremostly, here's that video about fans I referenced;

And other assorted goodies!
Technology Connextras (the second channel that stuff goes on sometimes):
Technology Connections on Twitter:
The TC Subreddit

This channel is supported through viewer contribution on Patreon. Thanks to the generous support of people like you, Technology Connections has remained independent and possible. If you'd like to join the amazing people who've pledged their support, check out the link below. Thank you for your consideration!

And thank you to the following patrons!


Download — The US electrical system is not 120V

Download video
💬 Comments on the video
Author

One of these days I'll tidy up that wire...
A minor note; the thing about 208 being 86.7% isn't right for simple resistive loads like heating elements. You'll actually only get 75% the heat on 208! Power (watts) goes up with the square of the voltage. But, if something is designed specifically for 208, you can pull up to 86.7% what you could on 240 with the same amperage.

Author — Technology Connections

Author

"We're just going to ignore three-phase for right now" *Angry entertainment electrician noises*

Author — Charlie

Author

Note how he does the voltage measurements with only one hand. Standard smart move to prevent his heart from being part of the circuit if he makes a mistake. (I'm sure someone else said this somewhere in the other 12000+ comments, but worth repeating...)

Author — Zev Farkas

Author

"This building is a single family home..."
"Honey, did you hear that? Is someone downstairs?"

Author — Artie Fischel

Author

You amuse me, as a professional electrician with 47 years in the trade, we all do things different, but in our own ways we are all safe even in the u.s.
Different but safe, I am from the u.k.

Author — Robert Dodge

Author

"To those of you in europe this looks horribly gross and terribly unsafe"
Laughs in hanging brakers

Author — Bio Emiliano

Author

"To Europeans this looks horribly dangerous. That's OK, we're coping."
You have the best lines.

Author — Jeremy Hall

Author

You make an immediate "more than meets the eye" joke when transformers come up, and I pause the video to give it an immediate like and write this comment. Well done.

Author — John Moore

Author

The switches on our UK outlets goes back to before we had shielded conductors on the plugs.
By switching the switch off the conductors were disconnected from the supply in order to prevent fingers from contacting the unshielded conductors of the plug.
Unshielded conductors were outlawed a few years ago and the switch is in reality no longer really necessary. The design of the 3 pin UK plug ensures that the "HOT" wire is always "on the right terminal" so that the switching occurs on the "HOT" side .
Most homes in UK are supplied by a single phase from a 3 phase supply at the local substation.
The voltage between phases on a UK 3 phase system measures a nominal 415 v.

Author — Harry Fab

Author

Europe: "I'm shocked! Shocked!"
America: "Well, not that shocked."

Author — 4KbShort

Author

“Stop being pedantic.” Oh ho ho yeah that’s not gonna stop. People love being pedantic.

Author — Mikarri

Author

Technology Connections is the only place I go to learn about current events

Author — Sandy M.

Author

"I'm showing you mine so you don't need to see yours" ROFL

Author — m4c1990

Author

This man is erudite! Clearest explanations of all time of any topic.

Author — kieferonline

Author

The UK shaver outlets came into standardization before GFCIs were available.
Edison's Dc power delivery was at a nominal 110V. Switches were required next to the outlets because DC at these voltages would draw a long spark when a plug is withdrawn without a switch off first. This voltage was maintained by Tesla's AC power delivery and he added the other leg of the 240. Tesla was always optimizing, so he kept the legs at 110/120 while giving provision for twice the power with 2 legs. Many early appliances were rated for AC/DC if the voltage was the same, so 110/120 continued into the AC age. By the way, three phase power was invented by Tesla and it is used almost everywhere. There have been two phase systems, but the phases are 90 degrees apart and require 4 wires. Three phase rules!

Author — AriBenDavid

Author

We have 3 phase 400 volt inn and 240 in the outlets at least where im at.

Author — Matthew Smith

Author

"To those of you in europe this looks horribly gross and terribly unsafe"
Laughs in brazilian

Author — Gabriel Maia

Author

I believe that you're the only person on YouTube that must be customizing your captions. I absolutely appreciate it, sir!

Author — fullmetaljacket76

Author

1:21 as a man of electrical fuckery myself when I heard that buzz I wondered what kind of transformer you had running down. There and why you haven't changed it lol

Author — meseyc

Author

One item of note with regard to using UK power tools, keep in mind that UK power systems use 50hz vs the 60hz in the US which is a 20% frequency difference. Anything that relies on the AC frequency for timing could be affected. One of my less than intelligent co-workers didn't realize that difference when he brought a US digital alarm clock and connected it to a stepdown transformer in his room in southern Asia and couldn't figure out why his clock was always running slow. I laughed, explained the reason and suggested using a battery powered travel alarm clock instead.

Author — rpeltz