Living In The Philippines Forum

It’s Your Money => Building in the Philippines => Topic started by: harry80020 on March 03, 2008, 01:56:17 AM

Title: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 03, 2008, 01:56:17 AM
Dear Members,

     Personally I enjoy the arguements about the electric service in
the Philippines.  I\'ve been an electrician for 30+ years in the USA
and I totally rewired my father-in-law\'s house in Sibonga, Cebu.  I
will try to address some of the issues about the electric service you
will find in most of the Philippines, although I understand there are
small areas of American style systems arround the old US military
bases.

     \"IDEALLY\", here is what you \"should\" have in the majority of the
Philippines:  A transformer on a pole somewhere near your house, it
will be serving several houses in the neighborhood.  It will have 2
lugs on the secondary with 220 volts between them.  There will be 1
wire from each lug going to each house.  One and only one of the
lugs \"should\" also have a second bare copper wire connected to it
with the other wire and this bare wire will run down the pole to a
ground rod at the base of the pole.  The 2 large wires running to
each house (service drop) will have the hot wire insulated and the
other (neutral) may be bare or insulated.  After passing through the
electric meter these wires go to your fuse or breaker box.  The hot
wire will connect to the supply buss where the fuses or breakers
are.  The neutral wire will connect to the neutral buss which is
directly mounted to the metal box.  There SHOULD also be a bare wire
gioing from the neutral buss to a copper ground rod at each house.
From the fuse or breaker box there will be one black 220 volt hot
wire from the fuse or breaker and one white neutral wire from the
neutral buss for each circuit.  This is what you should have in the
majority of the simple Philippine 2 wire systems, please take note of
the above IDEALLY\'s and SHOULD\'s.

     The Philippine system is a GROUNDED system because the neutral
wire is/SHOULD be connected to a ground rod at the pole where the
transformer is and a ground rod and/or cold water pipe at each
house.  This keeps the transformer secondary from floating: the
neutral wire at zero volts and the hot wire about 220 volts,
depending on the service company\'s supply voltage.  The neutral wire
will be at zero volts because it is connected to ground.  If you have
anything other than zero volts, you have a loose, dirty, or missing
connection to the ground rod; or you are using your volt meter
incorrectly (which is not unusual).  The neutral wire is also called
the \"GROUNDED\" wire and it should have white insulation throughout
the house.

     AS for the 3rd green or bare wire, which is missing most of the
time in the Philippines, It is called the \"GROUNDING\" wire.  It is
connected to the neutral wire in the fuse/breaker box either in the
same neutral buss mounted to the metal box or a seperate GROUNDING
buss, but they should be connected together and only in the
fuse/breaker box, this is the one and only time they should ever be
connected together.  Throughout the house this GROUNDING wire should
connect to the 3rd round prong of each recepticle, all metal electric
switch/ recepticle boxes, green hex head GROUNDING screws, and
eventually all metal fromes of all electric appliances.  This keeps
the metal parts of the electric system and appliances at zero volts.
The same Zero volts your human body is, so no shocks.

     Throughout the house the white GROUNDED wire is at zero volts and
is a current carrying part of each circuit.  The green or bare
GROUNDING wire is also at zero volts, is not part of the circuit, and
does not carry current (except in a fault).  It\'s purpose is to keep
all metal parts of the system and metal parts of the appliances at
zero volts, and to trip the breaker or blow the fuse and shut the
circuit down in the case of a fault.

     As for fuses or breakers, there should be one, and only one, in
each circuit and it should be in the hot wire.  There should NEVER be
a fuse or breaker in the neutral white GROUNDED wire, usually you
will find this mistake in the old 2 fuse boxes.  I have seen a fuse
in the neutral a lot in the Philippines and some old installations in
the US.  If you find a fuse in the neutral GROUNDED wire, please
remove it and connect the neutral GROUNDED wire direct.  If you
disagree with me and that fuse in the neutral ever blows, you may
then understand why.

     There is no magic electrical trick you can do to get 110 volts
from the usual Philippine style 220 volt electric system.  The ONLY
way is to buy a 220 to 110 volt transformer.

      Yes you can ship an American style breaker box to the
Philippines and it will work fine, if you know what to do.  The 2 hot
busses will have to be connected together and tied to the one hot 220
volt wire in the Philippines.  Yes, standard American single pole 110
volt breakers will work just fine on Philippine 220 volt systems,
they are good to 300 volts.  You will only need single pole breakers,
NO/NONE/NEVER any 2 pole breakers.  Also the same breaker on 220
volts will carry twice the power it carries on 110 volts.  A 15 amp
breaker carries only 1650 watts on 110 volts, but a whopping 3300
watts on 220 volts.  So you will likely want/need the smallest
breakers you can find.

     I have no idea if an American style 110 volt ground fault or arc
fault breakers will work on the Philippine system, I imagine you
would blow the test button when you try to test them.  I contacted
the American manufacturer with this question, but they wouldn\'t
answer.  I imagine because of legal issues.  You will have no use for
the Americam style 2 pole GFCI\'s for you hot tub heater, I imagine no
use for a hot tub either.

     Now for the American style 110/220 volt system you might find
arround the old US military bases:  The transformer on the pole will
have 3 lugs for the secondary.  The middle lug is the \"center tap\"
and will be connected to the ground rod that should be at the bottom
of the pole and at the ground rod that should be at each house.  The
second wire connected to this lug and running to each house may be
called GROUNDED, neutral, or common.  The other 2 lugs are the hot
wires.  Each hot wire will be 110 volts to the
neutral/common/GROUNDED wire.  And there will be also be 220 volts
between the 2 hot wires if you leave the 3rd neutral/common/GROUNDED
wire out of the circuit.  The American style system is a single phase
system even though there are 2 hot wires.  One hot wire will be at
+110 volts at exactly the same time the other hot wire is at -110
volts, thus they are in the same phase.

     If there are any budding electrical engineers out there, please
no arguements about American style 208 volt systems, I already know
they use 2 phases from a three phase system.  If you do have a 3
phase system for the secondary in your area of the Philippines, I
think you will find it to be a 380 volt 3 phase \"Y\" tied secondary.
Thus any phase to ground will be 220 volts.  Besides, I thought
engineers were supposed to drive trains?

     If I can be of help or if anyone wants to argue (I enjoy both),
you may contact me on or of the list.

Best always,
Harry Morgan
harry80020@yahoo.com

PS,
     I understand Don Herrington, the list owner, especially enjoys
discussions about electricity and tin roofs.

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 08, 2008, 04:37:23 AM
List website and to Join this List, Livinginthephilippines3
http://www.livinginthephilippines.com our website

Join out new Forum at
http://www.livinginthephilippines.com/forum
The Living in the Philippines Community


Dear Members,

There is one (likely several) very important point I mentioned in
my original post, but didn\'t stress enough. Even though the \"usual\"
Philippine 2 wire 220 volt system is considered a GROUNDED system
because one leg is referenced to ground, this serves only to keep the
transformer secondary from \"floating\" and does very very very little
to protect against shock hazzards. The most important primary thing
you can do is to add a third seperate green or bare GROUNDING wire
that connects to the metal frame of all electric appliances and ties
the metal direct to your ground rod.

I appologize that I am not a good writer and am difficult to
understand for non-electricians, I have mightmares of someone causing
all the lights to go out on the whole island of Cebu because of my
article. I have the advantage of several years of practice, and even
then sometimes have trouble chatting with some other electricians.
Even though they know the correct way to do things, some electricians
haven\'t taken time understand why things are done a particular way,
including me.

Also, I have no problem with the wonderful people who have
disagreed with what I said in the original article. There are almost
always at least 2 different ways of doing things, but I do know what
I found in Sibonga, Cebu. Please be sure you understand what you
have before you play with it. Just because the light is lit doesn\'t
mean it is wired the best way.

Best always,
Harry.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 08, 2008, 05:55:00 AM
     I do want to warn you about the electricity in the
Philippines. It is a full 220 volts to ground, not the 110 like in the States.
About the only way you could get hit with 220 in the States would be to jump in
the air and grab the 2 hot wires before you land. Also the houses there are
mostly masonery which is a good ground, not wood like in the States. I am used
to messing with live wires, but I am doubly careful in the Philippines.

Best always,
Harry.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 08, 2008, 05:58:21 AM
Dear Greg,

Thank-you to you and one of the KIWI members for pointing out this
important omission on my part. To use a cold water pipe for ground
it has to be:
1. metal
2. continuous. No removable fittings to interupt the continuity such
as water meters, unions, water heaters, etc.
3. in direct contact with the earth for a minimum of 10\' since the
water pipes in the PI are on top of the ground rather than burried, I
would want much more than 10\' because the pipe isn\'t in total contact
and the soil could be drier, neither of which is good

It is prefered to connect to the pipe as close to where it comes
out of the ground, rather than in the house so you will always have
an intact path to earth. I know in the Philippines the water pipes
are on top of the ground and the removable water meter is usually out
by the gate beside the street. I still used the water pipe at my
father-in-law\'s because it was over 40\' to the water meter and I also
had tied to a ground rod.

The older plumbers here in the States do not trust electricians
and will always look to make sure the ground is connected ahead
of/before the water meter.

Thanks again,
Harry
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: ACKelley on March 08, 2008, 07:16:58 AM
   Hey, guys!  Love to read these posts; very informative and entertaining.  I have a comment and a question:  When I moved here, I brought all 110 appliances, remembering that houses I had visited in the past were equipped with both 220 and 110 power.  I was informed that, with the departure of the Americans in 1991, the 110 went away in all but the older areas close to Clark air base.  My building contractor rewired the entire house, with each outlet equipped with 110 on the left, and 220 on the right.  I bought child safety caps, and inserted one in every 220 outlet, to remind us of the difference.  By the way, that works great; have only had two incidents of plugging 110 appliances into 220, and both were repaired cheaply.
   My dilemma:  I had calculated the requirement for a whole-house transformer, and of course, my wife has a relative who is an electrician (by name, guess, or schooling I\'m not sure), and had a 5,000 watt unit he would sell me.  Someons stole it before he could bring it over, so I \"had\" to buy the only other one he had, which was a 15,000 watt transformer.  Much more expensive, but, hey somebody had to pay for the theft; might as well be me.  It was hardwired in, and everything works fine.  The \"electrician\" said it pulls no juice when there is no load, but I seem to have the highest electric bills in the subdivision.  Here is a snapshot of my bills; is he right?
Power  Bills            
Month   KWH   PESO   PESO/KWH   Dollar Equiv
June   645   5,586.50   8.66   136.26
July   1,031   9,024.77   8.75   220.12
August   986   8,222.64   8.34   200.55
September   864   7,201.40   8.33   175.64
October   786   6,434.67   8.19   156.94
November   679   5,382.55   7.93   131.28
December   817   6,217.91   7.61   151.66
January   931   6,548.66   7.03   159.72
February   763   6,211.11   8.14   151.49
            
Peso:41   AVG =   6,758.91      164.85
            
Tony
            
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: coutts00 on March 08, 2008, 11:13:02 AM
Tony,

I am afraid to say, but your electrician is full if sh*t up to his eye balls. Of course the transformer pulls a load even when nothing is plugged into it, put your hand on it when nothing is running, is it warm or hot, its pulling juice. The bigger the transformer the more juice, is there a breaker on the lines running into the transformer, if so open the breaker when not using a 110v appliance and watch your bills go down. As I posted on another link, we all have bad habits about leaving Cell Phone chargers plugged in, they still pull juice when the phones not being charged. The TV still pulls juice even when in standby mode, most of us forget to turn off our printer when it is not in use, but it pull juice when not printing, you should configure your PC\'s as well for standby or sleep mode or hibernation. Configure your screen to shutdown after 5 Min\'s of non use, don\'t bother with the screen saver, go into the power settings of your PC, configure your hard drives to spin down after 3 Min\'s of non use, and the PC to drop into sleep after 10 Min\'s of non use, it take about 15 - 30 secs to resume, but after doing this I have seen my bills here drop 1000p in one month. also if you have any external drives like a dvd or extra hard drive, even things like usb drives left plugged in all pull extra juice. Do you turn your PC off at night, you should, it only takes as long to turn back on in the morning as it takes you to make the coffee or have the house keeper do it.

Everything we can do to turn off appliances when not running saves juice, do you really need the clock on the microwave, if not unplug it, the clock requires power as well, so it keeps the power supply on the microwave fired up when doing so. Get into the habit of turning off lights as soon as you leave a room. And for those of us with a peaked roof house, whatever the sheeting on it or tiles, that space gets hot, and in turn heats the rest of the house, most insulation I have seen here is junk. Purchase a 40 watt exhaust fan and mount it as high in the roof as you can, like an attic fan, turn it on 30 Min\'s before you crank up the a/c, you will find as it pulls out the hot air it pulls in cooler air to replace it. You may not need to crank up the a/c as soon as you thought, a 40 watt fan is cheaper than a 600 - 1000 watt A/C unit.

Wayne
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: graham on March 08, 2008, 01:33:50 PM
Wayne,
 Just a thought. With regards to you suggestion of a 40 watt exhaust fan. In OZ we have a lot of houses that have a raised sub floor. There is a company there selling small solar fans that are fitted to the wall and circulate the air between the sub floor and the ground. These would then run all day for NO cost and move the air in the attic or wherever.

Graham
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: coutts00 on March 08, 2008, 01:37:46 PM
Yes, Graham, same thing is done in the US. If you can find one grab it and use it.

Wayne
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: ACKelley on March 08, 2008, 02:38:02 PM
Thanks for the info, Wayne.  Yeah, that\'s what I thought.  I hope he\'s a better restaurateur (his normal business) than he is an electrician.  But somehow, my wife thinks all of her relatives who claim some expertise in everything all know more than I do.  I do turn everything off at night, have the sleep mode set to click in after 3 minutes on the pc, etc.  It\'s just that nagging feeling that I was sold a bill of goods , along with the 15k watt transformer.  But, it doesn\'t feel hot to the touch, because it\'s hard wired in under the dirty kitchen sink, and it\'s inside a steel cabinet.  The thing\'s the size of a Doberman dog house!  Right now I\'m stuck with a brand new 110 side-by-side ref, coffee maker, iron. microwave, vacuum, drill, saw, rice cooker and electric razor.  But in time... I plan on being here the rest of my life!  Thanks again
Tony
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 08, 2008, 11:13:19 PM


Dear Gary,

Without the ground reference on a transformer, for instance 220
in the Philippines, all you know is that there is 220 volts between
the 2 terminals. But the secondary can & will float in relation to 0
volts: one therminal could be +100 volts and the other at +320
volts. Or one terminal could be at -60 volts and the other at -280.
Or one terminal could be at +80 volts and the other at -140.

By referencing one terminal at ground or 0 volts, the other
terninal will stay at 220 volts. Actually it\'s value will follow a
sine wave path back & forth between +220 and -220 volts, because it\'s
AC voltage.

In the US and at some areas in the Philippines arround the old
military bases, we use a transformer with a center tapped secondary
coil. These transformers will have 3 lugs on the secondary, instead
of 2. By tieing the center lug to a ground rod or 0 volts, the other
2 lugs will be locked at +110 and -110 volts. So you will have 110
volts between the center lug and either outer lug, and there will
also still be 220 volts between the 2 outer lugs.

Best always,
Harry.



--- In LivingInThePhilippines3@yahoogroups.com, \"garycottam55\"
wrote:
>
> Larry, I\'m a non-electrician and I understood perfectly what you
said
> except for the part about the transformer floating. I\'ve heard
that
> term before from a friend that\'s a EE but I don\'t really understand
> the concept. From what you\'ve told me about Philippine power I
have
> no doubt that I can do about any wiring I need to there, thanks.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 09, 2008, 11:55:37 PM

Dear Gerry,

    I highly recommend you ground your water heater in the best possable way you can.  I realize a 2\' piece of rebar with the wire wrapped arround the top is common in the Philippines, and this is better than nothing.  But an 8\' copper rod and/or cold water pipe in continuous contact with the earth for a minimum of 10\' is much better.  Also proper brass clamps are available in the Philippines with a little searching.

    Salt will increace conduction for a while and I have seen this done here in dry Denver once, but I do not recommend it.  Be your ground rod steel rebar or copper, the salt will eat it away to nothing in a short time.

    You may dig a hole for the ground rod or drive it with a sledge.  You may also dig a trench and lay it horizontally, the trench should be at least 2\' deep.  But the easy way if you don\'t have a lot of rocks is to use a half gallon of water and one hand.  Dig a small hole about the size of a dinner bowl where you want the ground rod and fill it with water.  Start working the rod into the bottom of the hole, when it just begins to get stiff pull it out of the hole it\'s making and let more water run down into the hole the rod is making.  Keep the bowl sized hole filled with water and keep repeating this process until the rod is to depth.  Do not stop with the rod partially in the ground because it will stick and you won\'t be able to move it up or down.  The rod is acting like a piston on the water and the water is forcing the dirt away from the point.  Stop when the top of the rod will be a few inches above ground.

    I can also tell you how to set large power poles with dynamite in this same mannor if you like, but an auger is quieter.  No charge for the \"trade secret\".

Best always,
Harry.



--- In LivingInThePhilippines3@yahoogroups.com, \"ogergree\" wrote:
>
> -
> mY SHOWER heaters have a green wire coming out of each ,can I join an
> earthwire to it ,run it down the outside wall and attach to a rebar
> banged deep into the ground ,I was going to throw a kilo of salt
> around the bar to attract moisture all the time [Or i could loosen a
> bolt in the heater and srew it back on the earth wire
> Gerry
>
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: RUFUS on March 10, 2008, 12:50:01 AM
The metal casing on wells makes 4 a pretty good ground...

RUFUS
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on April 02, 2008, 09:45:05 PM
Dear Bob,

    Most engineers are a little windy, but not bad people in general.  I imagine he is not familiar with what you are dealing with in the Philippines.  It sounds like you have already figured out what you need to do, but I do wonder how your panel found it\'s way to the Philippines?

    I imagine the breaker panel you have is 4 or 6 branch circuits , since it doesn\'t have a main breaker?  Yes you can feed both busses from a 2 pole breaker, but you will have to use a short jumper wire so the one hot wire is tied to both terminals of the breaker.  Breakers work just fine, no matter which way the current goes through them.

    You can also feed the busses direct and skip feeding through a main breaker, you will still have to use a short jumper wire to tie the 2 busses together.  This will gain you 2 more branch circuits in the panel.  I don\'t know if this is still mentioned in the code book, but it is legal so long as there are 6 or less branch circuits.  The main breaker is really serving as a main disconnect and does little for over current protection, since the busses can handle more current than the breaker.  One square inch of copper buss can handle 1000 amps. 

    Over current/ground fault protection for the wiring from the buss all the way back to the transformer is supposed to be provided by a \"fusable link\" cut-out somewhere in the transformer primary or secondary, but don\'t count on this in the Philippines.  Either way, a main breaker would do little, if anything, to protect the outside wiring.  Your inside wiring will be protected by the branch circuit breakers.

    You are correct, you will want to remove the tie bar from the 2 pole breakers to make them single pole for your branch circuits.  You are also correct that the neutral NEVER feeds through a breaker or fuse, connect it directly to the neutral buss.  The only time the neutral connects to a breaker is when you are using a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) breaker.

    I doubt you will need 30 amp breakers for your branch circuits in the Philippines unless you are powering something really large like an electric range, large air conditioner, or clothes drier.  30 amps on 220 volts is a lot of \"whammie\" for a normal home branch circuit, and it needs 10 gauge wire.

Best always,
Harry.



bob roper wrote:

High Harry, I\'m bob roper residing in Manapa which is in the province of Mindanao.

I read your article with great interest as I am just in the process of wiring my house. I bought a beaker panel which has two busses just like in Canada but no provision for a main breaker. The clerk could not answer my question how do you feed the panel. I found a contact who is and electrical engineer, he told me you attach the line to one contact on the breaker and the neutral to the other contact on the dual breaker/tandem breaker. Also upon questioning he confirmed that each circuit in the house is wired this way, switching load and neutral. I didn\'t tell him but I think that is bullshit and upon reading your article confirms what I thought you do not switch the neutral. So back to my original dilemma how to power the other buss. I can only guess that I jumper it from the load line thus powering both busses and then I can use each breaker individually. But but I am confused because they only sell tandem breakers with a tie bar, which I soon found is easily removed.

So can I jumper the 30 amp tie breaker to power both buses and terminate the neutral on the neutral buss in the panel and run each circuit from a single breaker and it\'s neutral to the neutral buss just like north America???

Thanks for any help

Regards...........Bob

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on April 12, 2008, 10:31:10 PM
Dear John,

    I only actually measured the frequency in Sibonga, Cebu, which was 60 cps.  I have also heard from others that 60 cps. is the norm for all of the Philippines.  I\'m not that well versed on electronics, but I don\'t think it would work to have 2 frequency standards in one country.  And I \"think\" it takes a different TV to operate on 50 cycles?  I don\'t know why because the first thing the TV\'s power supply does is change the alternating corrent to DC, then it has an oscillator operating at somewhere arround 16000 htz for the scan.  But this is a wee bit beyond my area of knowledge.

Best always,
Harry.


John Logan wrote:

Harry, tell me this is nearly all the Philippines operating on 60 cycle or is some areas on 50 cycle (european standard) ?  John Logan
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on December 01, 2008, 05:53:12 AM
[linP3] Re: Step Down Transformer,

In all likely hood no, unless it\'s a small TV. Look on the back
of the TV, it should say haw many watts it uses. If it doesn\'t and
just lists voltage & amperage, volts x amps = watts. Buy a step down
transformer that has at least 20% to spare for the load. I other
words, you only want to load the transformer to a maximum of 80% of
it\'s capacity.

Best always,
Harry.



--- In LivingInThePhilippines3@yahoogroups.com, larry lynch
wrote:
>
> There are many places that sell step down transformers. Will a
stepdown transformer that will handle 50 watts maximum be ok for a tv?
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: grizzi on December 03, 2008, 03:21:24 AM
Since this is such an interesting topic, I have one to add. A friend of mine is trying to retire to the PI. He has been working in the culinary arts for quite a while and has quite a bit of cooking equipment that he wants to bring to the PI and start a small business or school.

The issue he is trying to figure out is if its possible to have 380v/3ph that he needs for his heavy mixers and other items that he wants to bring there.

I told him this board is a wealth of information and that maybe there are some of you living in the PI that have had the same issue, or that know someone that has gone through the same issues with required voltage.

Thanks ahead of time for any answers you can provide.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: cogon88 on December 03, 2008, 06:11:33 PM
Grizzi You can have 380v 3 phase 60 hz power if you buy a custom built transformer but first you need to be on main supply line look for poles with 3 wires across the top. these lines are along most major highways in the Province

In the PI you are responsible to pay for all wire and poles to your building from the supply line and to provide the transformer, potential transformers, line breakers and computerized meter and  installation costs

An electrical plan needs to be submitted and approved by provincial engineer then submitted to the power company your certified electrician can install the equipment and wire it but the power company will inspect and sign off on the installation before they energize it 

Most 3 phase here is 240, 440 or 4400 volts

For 380 volt you will need to have a box transformer custom made do not use the cans as they are more expensive there are several shops in Manila that will do this for you they are in the yellow pages (the power company will test the unit for you prior to installation) tell the shop the voltage and kva you need for the transformer and they will quote you a price for the build

The local power company will charge you more for the transformer and installation if they even bother to try and help you most will say 380 is not available 

I installed a 440 volt 3 phase 1000 KVA transformer 2 years ago cost was right at 20K USD complete the local power company quoted 36k USD so you need to look around and spend some time contacting various suppliers get many quotes as most suppliers here will try and take advantage of non local

Hope this helps contact me off site if this ever gets to be real and I will give you some contacts

Tom / Roxas City 
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: grizzi on December 04, 2008, 05:18:32 AM
Colin, Tom,

Thank you for the information. I will pass it on to my friend here. He will have to decide if he wants to pay the large sum to have a custom transformer made and installed or swap out his equipment with something that will perform without too much hassle in the PI.

Greg
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on December 05, 2008, 12:05:53 AM
Here\'s a price range for these Isolation Transformers in the USA:

(http://www.phaseconverter.com/temco.gif)

240v Delta X 380, 400, 415 volt Wye, 3 Phase, 60HZ Isolation Transformers (http://www.phaseconverter.com/Isolation240.html)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on February 18, 2009, 01:30:00 AM
    Actually, I think you \"MIGHT\" find 380 volt 3 phase in the Philippines, although I haven\'t checked.  If you have a 3 phase 380 volt Y-tied secondary, then any phase wire to ground would be 220 volt single phase.  And if you took all 3 hot legs, you would have 380 volt 3 phase.  This would be an easy way for them to get their 220 volt supply, but I don\'t know if they do it anywhere there?  In the area I worked in, the transformer was a single phase 220 volt secondary, I have no idea what the primary voltage was.

    In electrical power matters I do defer to my friend Aero Sick, but not in motorcycle issues.

Best always,
Harry
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Manila Cockney on April 25, 2009, 05:43:30 PM
I have a question I hope somebody can answer regarding electricity. I saw today a bread machine made in Germany, it was 800 watt, 230 volts and 50 hz. Our electricity is 220 volts and 60 hz.  Would this be okay to use here, the man in the shop had no idea. I know the voltage will not be a problem but its the frequency of being only 50 hz concerning me.
I do have an electric kettle and toaster 230 volt and only 50 hz bought in Hong Kong and have been using here for 7 years without problem. At the same time I bought a microwave with the same 50hz and it lasted 5 minutes.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on April 26, 2009, 12:03:10 AM
If there\'s a transformer in it, the transformer will run hotter (shorter life). You will use less than 1/2 amp more electricity, not enough to overload anything. If it has timers, clocks, they will be off maybe by up to 20% in accuracy.

Ask the man in the shop to plug it in and demonstrate all of the functions. If it starts to smoke, don\'t buy it...  8)

Billy

I have a question I hope somebody can answer regarding electricity. I saw today a bread machine made in Germany, it was 800 watt, 230 volts and 50 hz. Our electricity is 220 volts and 60 hz.  Would this be okay to use here, the man in the shop had no idea. I know the voltage will not be a problem but its the frequency of being only 50 hz concerning me.
I do have an electric kettle and toaster 230 volt and only 50 hz bought in Hong Kong and have been using here for 7 years without problem. At the same time I bought a microwave with the same 50hz and it lasted 5 minutes.

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Manila Cockney on April 26, 2009, 12:15:50 PM
[/quote]

I have had another thought  ;D even if the timer is OK, the motor used to mix the dough would, most likely, be an AC motor and therefore run 20% faster. This may not be a problem if the motor is powerful enough, but it could overload a lesser motor. Dough  gets very dense and elastic when it is mixed. I suggest you contact the manufacturer, it could be that they have been designed with 60HZ in mind rather than make different models for different markets. Let us know what you find out, I could be in the market for another one.

Colin
[/quote]

I already have one machine which I bought about 5 years ago in SM, which is 220V 60hz suitable for here. I happened to see this one in a surplus store costing only 2200 pesos. According to the salesman it was imported from Australia, which tells me it was never designed for use here. It is cheap and looks better than my one. However reading your comments it does not look suitable.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: grizzi on April 27, 2009, 03:31:26 AM
You\'re having the same issues that I have buying my power tools.  Since I\'m here in Europe, and they use mostly 220/50hz, I have to make sure the tools I buy are 220/50-60hz.  So far, there are a few Makita and Skill models that fit my needs.  Surprisingly, I have found that buying them here is actually cheaper in most cases than buying them in the Philippines.  Go figure!  8)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on July 24, 2009, 10:50:06 PM
Dear John,

     Yes, you can run a common neutral for more than one circuit and it will work just fine, but it is not the prefered method.  They do have well made Romex style house wiring there, which has an included neutral.  But the Philippine Romex style wiring I saw only had the 2 circuit conductors and didn\'t have a ground wire, I don\'t know if you can get the 2 conductor with ground included there?

    When I shipped the material to wire my father-in-law\'s house I included wire nuts.  The local experts had never seen them and didn\'t know what they were.  In the old days here in the US they used to just twist the wires and friction tape the connection, how long has it been since you\'ve seen a roll of friction tape?  Later they started soldering the wires after twisting them and then taped them.  Now here the code says \"the integredy of the cannection can not rely on solder\".  I think what this means is if there is any stress or pull on the wires, then the soldered connection will eventually come apart?  I personally seen nothing electrically wrong with a good solder job solder on a tightly twisted connection, in other words becareful of a cold solder joint.  Electricions here only use wire nuts now, but sometimes you have to make the best of what you have.

    Good clean tight electrical connections are the important thing !!!

    Sounds like you have a handle on things, please let me know if there\'s anything else I can do.

Best always,
Harry.


--- On Thu, 7/23/09, John Buczek wrote:


    From: John Buczek
    Subject: Re: Philippine Electrical Mess
    To: \"Harry Morgan\"
    Date: Thursday, July 23, 2009, 6:39 PM

    Thanks for your quick reply and no......... I didn\'t have any trouble understanding you.  I was an engineer once upon a time, even though most engineers don\'t consider computer engineers to be \"real\" engineers. Once upon a time, 45 years ago, that included a course in basic wiring.  Not that I remember much other than subconsciously.

    Your understanding is correct.  The \"standard\" breaker box they use here is dual bus like American boxes but no neutral bus or ground bus bars.  As you said in your original piece, they  use one \"hot\" bus as the neutral bus.  After I caught my foreman connecting a breaker and being casual about which wire went where, no one is allowed in the panel but me.  I\'m sure you know the philosophy here: if it works, it\'s \"good enough\".

    I understand what you are saying about the hot wire remaining hot if the neutral breaker opens and the hot does not but I\'ve got to think that this is going to be VERY rare with the dual pole, single switch breakers we\'re using so I\'m reassured.  I always regard wiring as hot unless I\'ve tested it to ground anyway.  That has saved my butt a couple of times.

    Right now, all the ground wires run to the panel where they are stripped two inches back and combined in a large copper split bolt with connects to the \"neutral\" bus, the panel frame, the utilities neutral and the local ground rod all with #4 wire.  Twice a year I get myself a BB box by shopping on the internet and having the stuff shipped to my sister in Tampa.  She bundles it up and forwards it.  Next box I\'ll go shopping on the internet for a \"neutral bus bar\" or \"ground bus bar\" that I can add to my panel.  If I can\'t find it, I\'ll have a local machine shop make one out of copper bar stock if I can find it.  Aluminum if I cannot.  I\'ve tried every supplier in town and they all say they can\'t get me any such thing ready made.

    I\'m double checking all the junction boxes since I got a \"tingle\" from the chassis of one of my computers and discovered that the electrician had apparently registered his displeasure at being forced to run ground wires by not connecting some of them.

    I\'m getting ready to wire the second floor myself this time.  There are six circuits: lighting x2, plugs x2, hot water heaters (on demand wall mount type) and aircon units.  All the feed wires will run up from the panel in the first floor utility room to the \"attic\" through one 2\" conduit cast into a concrete column and then down the walls as needed.  The 2\" PVC conduit goes into a 12\" x 12\" metal junction box and will then be distributed.  I\'m wondering about the need to run separate neutrals for each circuit.  The feeds are 3.5 mm wire for the lights and 5.5 mm wire for the rest.  Seems to me I should be able to run a single #4 neutral to that junction box, then connect all six of the neutrals to that with a split bolt again.  Obviously the neutrals would no longer go through the breakers.  Do you see any hazards with that which I am not anticipating?

    Another frustration: wire nuts.  They are available here but only by the piece and at 300% to 400% of US prices.  The locals connections are just twisted tight as piano wire and taped with two layers of soft butyl tape.  Water proof as hell but no mechanical strength to speak of.

    This place has certainly taught me patience.

    Thanks again,

    John Buczek
    aka John in Valencia, N.O.


    Harry Morgan wrote:
    > Dear John,
    >
    >     Nice to hear from you and I\'ll see what I can do from 7000 miles away.  I am flattered you saved my original article, it is also posted on our Living in the Philippine forum at:
    >  http://livinginthephilippines.com/forum/index.php/topic,661.0.html
    >
    >     I didn\'t do a lot of shopping for electrical equipment there, I shipped mine from the US.  So I don\'t know what is available there.  I totally understand your frustrations with dealing with the \"experts\" there.
    >
    >     I think what you are saying is the box they sold you is an American style with 2 separate hot busses and you are using American style 2 pole 220 volt breakers with 1 common \"switch to turn off both poles of the breaker at the same time?  What you have to be careful of when you run the neutral through a fuse of a breaker is if the fuse or breaker blows/ trips in the neutral wire and DOES NOT blow/trip in the hot wire.  If this happens, the circuit will still be HOT even though noting on the circuit is working.  In effect the hot wire is still hot and has no where to go to complete the circuit, until you touch it and then you complete the circuit.  If both poles of the breaker are tied together, they \"should\" both trip no matter which one sensed the overload/fault, although this is not the best way to do things.  Just be very careful if the lights go out to make sure the circuit is really shut down before you stict your fingers on anything.  I can\'t stress this enough because the Philippines uses a full 220 volts to ground and the type of construction there makes a very good ground, you do not want to be the link between full 220 and a good ground.
    >
    >     Maybe you can find an electrical supply/distributor who would stock a ground buss, I am a little surprises there wasn\'t one in your breaker box already?  You would have to mount it securly to the metal box and then connect all of the white and green wires for your house branch circuits, scrape the paint off so it makes a good electrical connection.  You will also have to connect the neutral wire from the power company and the wire from your ground rod to the neutral/ground buss, be sure you have the correct neutral wire from the power company!!!!  You would then connect both hot busses to the one hot wire from the power company or just connect to one buss and run a jumper to the other buss.  You could still use your 2 pole breakers, but you would in effect have 2 circuits on one 2 pole breaker and if either circuit tripped it would also shut the other down.
    >
    >     The \"expert\" town electricians in Sibonga also told me there is no need for a green ground wire in the Philippines because one of their wires is already grounded.  Well, on American 110 volt circuits, one of the wires (white) also is already grounded and we still run a green ground wire.  In the old days here in the US we didn\'t run a green ground wire, but we do now and there is a very good reason for it.  I don\'t care what your Fred or my Jerry Silva in Sibonga says, it\'s a good idea.  And if you ever run into my Jerry and his 2 helpers, keep an eye on them so they don\'t try to take your tools.  And always deal with the power company yourself, not through the town electrician.
    >     I wouldn\'t want to do it myself, but I guess it is OK to run both the hot wire and the neutral wires through a 2 pole breaker, just be very sure that the breaker will open/turn off both wires if it trips.
    >
    >     Also, as I understand you, you are running a green grounding wire with your house circuits?  I am wondering what you are connecting it to in the breaker box if you don\'t have a ground buss?  It has to be securly connected to both the neutral wire from the power company and to your house ground rod and NOT run through any type of breaker of fuse.
    >
    >     I am sorry if I am hard for you to understand, even other electricians sometimes have a hard time understanding me.  Feel free to E-mail me any time.
    >
    > Best always,
    > Harry.
    > --- On *Thu, 7/23/09, John Buczek //* wrote:
    >
    >
    >     From: John Buczek
    >     Subject: Philippine Electrical Mess
    >     To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    >     Date: Thursday, July 23, 2009, 2:48 AM
    >
    >     Some time ago you posted a long message on LIP3 about electrical
    >     wiring in the Philippines.  I clipped it and saved it for the day
    >     that I got to that point in constructing my new home.
    >
    >     You also invited questions......... blessings on your head!
    >
    >     I\'m in Dumaguete.  I\'m more or less acting as my own master
    >     contractor with the help of my brother-in-law Fred, a filipino who
    >     graduated University of Zamboanga with a degree in Civil
    >     Engineering but has failed his license examine twice.  He has four
    >     years experience working for a construction company in Manila,
    >     mostly on apartments.  I paid a licensed engineer to review
    >     everything, take care of the permits and to visit the site and
    >     inspect weekly. So far most everything has gone fine.  No one
    >     around, foreigner or local, can believe how much we\'ve done on as
    >     little money as I\'ve actually spent.  We\'re done with heavy
    >     construction and are now doing finish work as money is available.
    >
    >     When it came to the electrical, I was away so I left it to my
    >     brother-in-law to hire an electrician and get all the rough wiring
    >     done.  The utility inspected and make the \"temporary\" connection
    >     pending a final inspection at completion.  I\'ve done all the
    >     finish wiring.  I insisted on a ground wire even though Fred
    >     argued that \'its not the filipino way\' which I\'m sure you\'ve run
    >     into.  I did that because I had frequently been zapped mildly but
    >     uncomfortably in the rental house we used to have.  I\'ve done a
    >     fair amount of \"owner\" wiring in the past, having lived in 11
    >     houses since I was 18, most of which I owned, but I hired the guy
    >     mostly because I didn\'t come here to work hard. .
    >
    >     Long preamble but now I\'ll come to the point.  I ran across your
    >     old message in my notes and went down and looked at the breaker
    >     box.  They did exactly what you said not to.  It\'s a double bus
    >     box and they are using the bus on one side as the neutral bus and
    >     are using double pole breakers on each circuit passing both the
    >     hot wire and the neutral through the breakers.
    >
    >     In your old post, this is what you said about that:
    >
    >     >>>>>>There should NEVER be
    >     a fuse or breaker in the neutral white GROUNDED wire, usually you
    >     will find this mistake in the old 2 fuse boxes. I have seen a fuse
    >     in the neutral a lot in the Philippines and some old installations in
    >     the US. If you find a fuse in the neutral GROUNDED wire, please
    >     remove it and connect the neutral GROUNDED wire direct. If you
    >     disagree with me and that fuse in the neutral ever blows, you may
    >     then understand why.<<<<<
    >
    >     Excuse me if I don\'t wait to see what happens..... .
    >
    >     There is no \"American style\" neutral bus in the box, all three of
    >     the local suppliers say they don\'t have any such box and this is
    >     \"how we do it here\".  I certainly could replace all the double
    >     pole breakers with single pole units and I could probably find a
    >     local machine shop to fabricate me a neutral bus but......... that
    >     would be a major step here, complicated by the fact that Fred, the
    >     electrician and three suppliers say \"this is the way we do it\"
    >     which could mean trouble with the utility\'s final inspection down
    >     the road.  My project includes three small apartments and two
    >     guest \"suites\" so I will also someday need an inspection from the
    >     municipal engineering office when I get my business license.  I
    >     won\'t pretend that the expense is of no interest either.
    >
    >     I sure appreciate knowing just what\'s going to happen if a breaker
    >     trips with the current system and some more reinforcement that
    >     making the change would be worth doing.
    >
    >     Since this conversation might be of general interest, I\'d be happy
    >     to move it onto LIP3 if you wish.
    >
    >     John Buczek
    >
    >
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Steve & Myrlita on July 25, 2009, 04:57:38 PM
My Dad taught me to 1st twist them together tightly using pliers. 2nd, to solder the twisted connection carefully using 60/40 solder making sure it\'s not a cold joint (Yes, I\'m a retired TV Repairman). 3rd to secure it with a wire nut. Finally last is to seal it with vinyl electrical tape. Yes, it\'s a lot of extra work but definitely safe and secure. My Dad still has connections in his house 44 yrs old and still look like 44 days old. Yes, old fashioned quality still counts to me. Not the local \"Good Enough\"...God Bless
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on August 25, 2009, 08:43:28 PM
Dear Craig,

    The short answer is yes, but:  First you will have to change the plug on the AC cord.  The Philippines uses a standard 2 prong 110 volt 15 amp receptacle for their 220, just like our 2 prong 110 volt receptacles here in the States.  Also I doubt you will have 3 prong receptacles in the PI, the 3rd prong is for grounding, and if so you \"should\" come up with another way of grounding the metal case of the AC unit.  You could rewire the whole house so it would have a 3rd grounding wire running with the branch circuits, or you can drive a ground rod near the AC unit and attach to that, or you can run a wire from the metal of the AC unit to a cold water pipe.  You could also ignore the grounding and not attach it, but this is not a good idea.

    Another issue in the PI is low voltage or brown outs.  Low voltage is hard on motors whether they be US or Philippine motors.  A converter or regulated power supply big enough to handle an AC unit would be a little expensive and I don\'t know how well they would take care of voltage drops?

    I am assuming you got my name from the article on our forum, but if not here is the address:   http://livinginthephilippines.com/forum/index.php/topic,661.0.html
Please let me know if you have any more questions.

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Mon, 8/24/09, Craig Baron wrote:


    From: Craig Baron
    Subject: Question about electricity in the Philippines
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Monday, August 24, 2009, 9:45 PM

    Hi, I am moving to the Philippines soon and was wondering about their 220v Vs.
    our 220v.  Can I use a 220v AC from the states in the Philippines with out a
    converter?  I see on the converters they have a 220 side so I guess that they
    convert Philippine 220 to US 220.  I\'m no electrician, just a plug and play
    type of guy.  Of course I don\'t want to screw that up either.
    Thanks.
    Craig
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on September 04, 2009, 09:48:17 PM
Dear Mike,

    There isn\'t much you can do, but use a plug adapter.  Usually there is a short ground wire on the adapter you could connect to a ground rod or a cold water pipe, but then the unit wouldn\'t be very portable.  Another option would be double insulated tools.

    I built a unit for my wife\'s family from an industrial 2 kW transformer.  Since the wife\'s family doesn\'t understand electricity very well, I didn\'t run a ground wire and used a ground fault receptacle for the 110 volt secondary.  It isn\'t perfect, but it was the best I could think of.  Another option for you might be to make a \"pig tail\" to plug into your unit with a ground fault receptacle on the other end.

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Thu, 9/3/09, mkingrei@aol.com wrote:


    From: mkingrei@aol.com
    Subject: power tools in the philippines
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Thursday, September 3, 2009, 3:17 PM

    hi harry
     
    my wife is from a village near cabanatuan
     
    her brother is a carpenter, without many tools of his own
     
    on our last trip, i got to talking to him and agreed to set him up with some tools.
     
    we went to a local hardware store and tools were surprisingly expense
     
    we have purchased an assortment of power tools (saws, planers, etc) in the US to send to him.
     
    we will be getting a transformer such as this one
     
    http://cgi.ebay.com/2000-W-Watt-110V-220V-Voltage-Converter-Transformer_W0QQitemZ400070453060QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_DefaultDomain_0?hash=item5d260ea744&_trksid=p4634.c0.m14.l1262
     
    my question is since this unit has a grounded plug, and Philippines outlets are 2 bladed, will he just use a plug adapter?
     
    or should he just buy a 2000 watt transformer locally with the 2 blade plug, and use a plug adapter to plug the US power tools into the transformer?
     
    thanks
    mike
     
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on December 15, 2009, 11:59:35 PM
Dear John,

    In the vast majority of the Philippines you will NOT have 2 hot wires like in the USA.  Although I understand there are a very few places near where the old US military bases used to be that do have the American style system.

    For the majority of the Philippines you will have 1 hot wire with a full 220 volts and one neutral/return wire with 0 volts.  Or at least you should have, you know how Philippine electricians are.  Ideally the hot wire will be black, red, or blue and the neutral wire will always be white.  The hot wire will go to the \"L\" connection and the neutral/white wire will go to the \"N\" connection.  For a screw in light bulb socket the hot wire goes to the base of the bulb and the neutral goes to the screw shell.

    I doubt you will find this in the Philippines, but in the US recepticles and other electric devices are color coded where the hot wire connects to a gold or copper colored screw/connection and the neutral wire connects to a silver colored screw/connection.  Also in the USA our recepticles/plug-in\'s have one slot that is wider/longer than the other, the hot wire connects to the narrower side and the neutral connects to the wider.

    It is always nice to hear from you and I am always willing to help.  Please be careful because it is difficult to trouble-shoot from a distance when I can\'t see what is going on with my own eyes.  Also I do understand there are differences with the language, even though we both speak English.

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Mon, 12/14/09, John Cable wrote:


    From: John Cable
    Subject: Re:- Sorry - - More On Electric\'s!
    To: \"Peter Cable\"
    Cc: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Monday, December 14, 2009, 3:22 PM

    Dear Pete.

    If you keep up the good work you may just make an Electrician\'s Mate out of me yet.

    When I was a boy I used to love playing around in workshops and so it was that Dad told me that ammeters were expensive, easily damaged and not to be played with by young boys, hence I have never used one until a few days ago. Luckily there were some instructions.

    As you should have noticed years ago, most Filipino building contractor crews turn up with no power tools or electric gadgets at all. No electric drills, electric sanders or grinders etc. etc. as the manager quickly learns that power tools have the tendency to disappear with nobody knowing where they have gone. In line with this observation I also noticed years ago that Filipino Electricians don\'t have ammeters, but instead come armed with a low wattage light bulb screwed into a \'bulb\' holder out of the back of which  are two wires, normally one yellow & one black, each wire being about 6\" long. I have at least 3 knocking round the house and these are Filipino ammeters which here after I will call a \'Bulboe\'

    This morning I was scheduled to make bread, so prior to starting to make doe I fixed up a jury rig of extensions and ran the oven for 30 minutes on 200 Celsius. All went well, so oven also found to be OK. Hob Top remains untested; too frightened to try!

    So I found knocking round apartment  about 18 feet wire, one end of which I taped to kitchen bathroom tap shank which goes to ground and the other end of the wire I connected to one wire on my Filipino  \'Bulboe\'.

    My  \'Bulboe\' now had one unused wire which I have wandered round the apt sticking into wall sockets, and so I have found that each socket has two live wires as the bulb lights up both when I stick the wire in the \"N\" or \"L\" socket hole.

    You have a \'Budding\' genius on your hands!

    I have ever so carefully also been trying to learn how to use an ammeter; first measured resistance across UK typical fuse & got that right. Then measured voltage across 1.5 volt torch battery & all OK. Then went for broke and measured AC power across electric socket and it was 220 volts as you said. I then put one ammeter lead into say the \"N\" socket hole and the other ammeter lead end onto my ground wire on bath room shank and found both \"N\" and \"L\" socket holes produce 110 volts.

    AND so we get to today\'s question.

    I now know that in a grounded socket I will have or should have three wires, one being a ground.

    That leaves me with two black wires each carrying 110 volts.

    111) - - How do I know which of these two live wires I should attach to the \"L\" in a socket and which to \"N\" in a socket?

    OK

    Now for sake of example let us assume that the two live wires are coloured (blue and red) and I want to setup a two socket ring main. For sake of example I run a red live wire from fuse box to \"L\" in first socket and a Blue wire from fuse box to \"N\" in first socket.

    Now being a total idiot, I now run a red wire from \"L\" in first socket to \"N\" in second socket. Conversely, I run Blue wire from \"N\" in first socket to \"L\" in second socket. Does it matter ??? If it does matter, the answer to 111) - - - above is very important!!

    The fore going has totally exhausted my brain, so enough for today.

    Bye 4 now, Jon.

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 12, 2010, 01:15:57 AM
Dear Steinar,

    I will give you some \"GUESSes\" on what you have, but it is very difficult to know for sure without being able to see & touch it myself.

    I \"think\" what you are describing is a United States style 2 buss breaker box with American style 2 pole breakers?  I \"think\" they are using one buss for the hot wire and the other buss for the neutral wire.  I have installed 2 American style breaker panels in Cebu, but I always tied the 2 busses together so both were hot and then used single pole breakers.  Then I ran all the neutral & ground wires to a metal connection bar mounted & grounded to the metal box, the wire from the ground rod also connects here.

    I would imagine your electricians did your installation this way because they didn\'t know any better and maybe because this is the only box/panel they had available?  You are fortunate they ran the neutral wire through a double/2 pole breaker, because the breaker will disconnect both wires in the event of a short or over load.  Yes, technically you do have 2 breakers in series in each circuit.  This will work and is safe, but it is \"not\" the preferred way to do things.  But it is sometimes difficult & expensive to find the correct equipment there and sometimes you have to make do with what is available.

    The shocks you are experiencing are not uncommon there, but I have no way of knowing if they are caused by the wiring method or the appliance itself?  If the neutral wire is \"not\" securely tied to a good ground reference in your breaker panel/box, it is \"possible\" for the system to \"float\" and build enough voltage in the metal frame of the appliance to give you a shock.  Another thing that \"could\" cause a shock would be if the hot & neutral wires are switched or reversed, which is not unheard of there.  It is \"never\" a good idea to reverse the hot & neutral connections, but \"unlikely\" to cause a shock.

    I know it is rarely done there, but it is \"ALWAYS\" a very good idea to run a 3rd green or bare wire with each circuit and securely connect it to the metal frame of each appliance.  This ground wire is connected to/with the neutral wires in the breaker box and securely connected to a good ground rod/cold water pipe, but this is the \"ONLY\" time and place the neutral and ground wires are connected together.

    I have some really funny stories about the town electricians in Sibonga & their work, if you are interested.  But the stocky electrician from the Cebeco office in Carcar is great & very knowledgeable, I wish I could remember his name.

    I apologize for being difficult to understand.  I usually have no trouble communicating with other electricians, but real/normal people can be a problem for me.  Please feel free to contact me again if I can be of further help.

Best always,
Harry.

   

--- On Wed, 3/10/10, Stones S. wrote:


    From: Stones S.
    Subject: the electric service in the Philippines
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Wednesday, March 10, 2010, 1:04 PM

    Hello Harry Morgan,


    I just read your writing at the net about the electricity in the Philippines, and I really understand what you write, but it does not correspong with the knwoledge of the electrician in the place of Cebu I stay.


    I renovated a house there, and put up all new cables for outlets, lights, owen etc. myself.

    I was aware of that they have one hot wire and one neutral, an has never seen any ground wire.


    What differs is that the new breakers i bought is double. As told by the electrician one are for the hot, the other for the neutral!........


    So when they connected the 8 mm2 main cables, to the main circuit breaker, of fuse as we call it, they asked specific which cable are hot and which  is neutral. Then they connected to the 30 Amp main fuse, both hot and neutral. I also connected all lines further the same way. So I DO have 2 fuses for each circuit.


    You mean that if the neutral circuit blows I\'ll be in problem? But the thing is, that if that one blow, it will pull the hot one at the same time since they are connected together in the handle of the breaker... Comments?



    And you write that the neutral should not go via a fuse, but connected together outside fuses...that will be about 8 neutral cables I have to assemble...


    Then when we are talking about washing machine, ref oven or other items, I discovered that they are sensitive of which cable to the  eg. oven get the hot wire. This because I got electric \"shock\" not much, but I could even measure voltage from the body to ground, but not if I turned the plug 180 degrees....


    Once, many many years ago, when we bought the first ref. there, I grounded it. But this ground cable brought current to the body of the ref. so that needed to remove it.

    Since then, I never grounded the ref again :-)


    Now, I have brought a baking oven, ceramic cooking oven, washing machine etc. to the house, and this tells me I have to ground them correct, and be sure to connect it correct as well.


    So, whats your comments?


    Best regards

    Steinar Selvaag

    Sweden

     
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 18, 2010, 11:16:37 PM
Dear Robert,

    Nice to hear from you.  You will need to find a ground/neutral buss for your Breaker box.  It is a smaller metal buss with lots of holes & set screws for all your neutral wires, ground wires, and the ground wire coming from your ground rod.  You should securely fasten it directly to the metal box so the box is connected to ground also.  I don\'t know if it is common for breaker boxed to come without the ground/neutral buss there?  You might check at a building supply store or electrical supply store to see if you can find one.  You also might ask at the power company office, they should know where to buy one.

    I have no experience with single wire earth return systems.  It is much to dry here in Denver for that to work.  When I was visiting England, I did notice that the house services only had a single wire running to each.  I wondered if they were using earth for the return, but never found another electrician to ask.  I did ask one home owner and he did say the wire was for his power, but he didn\'t know anything about electricity.  I am old school and like to see a nice copper wire for the return.

    Almost all power generated at the power company is 3 phase, it is easier for them to do it that way.  Here they usually generate at 440 volts, then transform it up to a much higher voltage for transmission.  They then transform it back down to 220 volts for your home service.  It doesn\'t matter if they run all 3 phases throughout the subdivision or just one leg, it still ends up as single phase 220 volts.  It is very very doubtful you will have 3 phase service in your home, you will have just one leg of the transformed 3 phase and the return/neutral.

    I really enjoyed your blog on your house construction, very informative.  Are you a member of our Living in the Philippines forum at: http://livinginthephilippines.com/forum/index.php ?  You should post a reference to your blog in the \"building in the Philippines\" classification under \"it\'s your money\".

    You are welcome to include my article in your blog, I am flattered.  Would you please include a \"plug\" for our forum also, I am a moderator for Living in the Philippines 3?  Please feel free to contact me at any time.

Best always,
Harry.



--- On Thu, 3/18/10, Robert Hammerslag wrote:


    From: Robert Hammerslag
    Subject: Philippine electrical
    To: \"harry80020\"
    Date: Thursday, March 18, 2010, 1:15 AM

    Harry,

    Thanks so much for the great article you wrote on electrical systems
    in the Philippines in LinP.  It\'s been so helpful to me as we build
    our own house in the Philippines.

    You invited questions, so I have one.  I bought a panel box at an
    electrical supply and got it home to find that it has only one bus --
    the hot one, but no provision at all for neutral/ground connections --
    NOTHING.  Is this common?  If so, how are the neutral connections
    made?

    The electrical distribution which serves our area (before
    transformers) is just one line.  Is this the
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single-wire_earth_return system?

    It\'s interesting to note that our subdivision is the employee\'s
    subdivision for the local electrical coop so it has three phase power.
    Some of the big shots in the coop bought property in the subdivision
    so maybe it makes their lots more valuable as they have access to
    three phase?

    I have a blog about my house building at
    http://goiloilo.com/category/our-house-project/  I have not gotten to
    electrical yet but when I do I\'d like your permission to include your
    article.

    Thanks,

    Bob Hammerslag
    Pineda/Schäffter Compound
    Barangay Tan Pael
    5021 Tigbauan, Iloilo
    Philippines
    http://goiloilo.com
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 20, 2010, 10:28:58 PM
Dear Robert,

    I understand what you are saying about only being able to find single pole breakers there, I got a similar E-mail from another member just last week saying the same.  My response to him should also apply in your case:
  I will give you some \"GUESSes\" on what you have, but it is very difficult to know for sure without being able to see & touch it myself.    I \"think\" what you are describing is a United States style 2 buss breaker box with American style 2 pole breakers?  I \"think\" they are using one buss for the hot wire and the other buss for the neutral wire.  I have installed 2 American style breaker panels in Cebu, but I always tied the 2 busses together so both were hot and then used single pole breakers.  Then I ran all the neutral & ground wires to a metal connection bar mounted & grounded to the metal box, the wire from the ground rod also connects here.    I would imagine your electricians did your installation this way because they didn\'t know any better and maybe because this is the only box/panel they had available?  You are fortunate they ran the neutral wire through a double/2 pole breaker, because the breaker will disconnect both wires in the event of a short or over load.  Yes, technically you do have 2 breakers in series in each circuit.  This will work and is safe, but it is \"not\" the preferred way to do things.  But it is sometimes difficult & expensive to find the correct equipment there and sometimes you have to make do with what is available.

    Many years ago in the United States, it was normal to run both the hot wire and the neutral wire through separate glass screw in fuses.  The installation is electrically safe, but can be a problem for the uses if only the fuse in the neutral blows and the fuse in the hot is still good.  In this case the circuit shuts down and appears dead because no current can flow through the open fuse, but the whole circuit (INCLUDING THE WHITE NEUTRAL WIRE) will be hot and have full voltage.  Even though both fuses have the same amp rating, there could be a small fractional difference, causing one to blow first  Your 2 pole breakers are really two single breakers tied together at the switches, so both will trip/open if either one senses an overload or fault.

    Since the only breakers available are 2 pole, the only correct (Harry\'s way) way would be to only use one side and leave the other with no wire.  Somehow I don\'t thing you are going to do this.

    It is always best to connect (reference) the neutral wire to a good ground in the breaker box only.  This keeps the neutral wire and the transformer secondary from \"floating\" and at 0 volts.  The neutral wire is part of the circuit and carries the exact same current/amperage, but it should always be at 0 volts.

    If you use one of the busses and there for one side of the breaker for the neutral wire, that buss should be tied to your ground rod & referenced to ground.  You should run the wire from your ground rod direct to the neutral buss and NOT through a breaker.  If you are running a green or bare separate circuit ground wire, you can mount one of the small separate busses you bought and connect the ground wires to it.  You will have to connect the ground & neutral busses together in the breaker box only and not through a breaker.  BEFORE YOU REFERENCE/CONNECT THE NEUTRAL BUSS TO GROUND, MAKE DARN SURE IT IS THE NEUTRAL AND NOT THE HOT, this would really ruin your day and anyone else standing close.

    If you haven\'t read my complete article in the Forum, it starts at: http://livinginthephilippines.com/forum/index.php/topic,661.0.html   
and is 3 pages long.  It also contains several comments/suggestions from other readers, which are helpful.  Also in the forum under \"it\'s your money\", there are a couple other articles on electricity from others that you might also want to read.

    It is always nice to hear from you, BE CAREFUL !!!

Best always,
Harry.


   

--- On Sat, 3/20/10, Robert Hammerslag wrote:


    From: Robert Hammerslag
    Subject: Re: Philippine electrical
    To: \"Harry Morgan\"
    Date: Saturday, March 20, 2010, 12:44 AM

    Hi Harry,

    Thanks for your response.  I have been a member of LinP almost since the beginning but not always so active.  I never joined the forum but perhaps I should, but after our house project is more or less complete and I have more time.  I am supposed to be retired but I get up at 0530 and am at the house project by 0700.  It\'s been so hot that by the time I get home at 5:30 PM that I\'m almost ready for bed, but I stall have paperwork to do, payroll, accounts etc. so not too much time now for online stuff.

    My wife and I did go to Iloilo City (pop about 500K) yesterday to do some supply shopping.  I spent about 1.5 hours chatting with the counter staff and owner of Western Electric supply, the biggest supplier of electrical supplies.  They had sold me the nice panel box I have and were able to supply very nice brass neutral/ground busses, so I feel my equipment is in good order -- especially after looking at what they sell for panel boxes at places like Ace Hardware.  Just really junk, with an aluminum load buss and no neutral buss.  Mine has a sturdy copper main buss.

    The part I am really confused about is the breaker.  My electrical engineer speced 2P breakers and only 2P breakers are sold here. I have not seen one 1P breaker.   My box uses plug in GE breakers.  The 2P breakers are linked -- that is when you trip the breaker, both the load and neutral are cut.  There is no way to switch off the neutral without switching off the load, so is your fear of  shutting off the neutral while leaving the circuit hot might be a non issue with this type of ganged 2P breaker?

    Here\'s my theory.  Maybe they know that the \"neutral\" may really end up carrying voltage because of poor grounds and other systemic problems so they don\'t dare leave the neutral always connected?

    I have to get a copy of the Philippine Electrical Code, but my guess is that the 2P breaker are required.  Everyone I\'ve spoken to assures me that they are always used.  That\'s all which are carried in the stores and all that electricians are familiar with.

    In my case, I am going the have three prong grounded plugs and a ground buss that can\'t be switched off.  I put a ground clamp on the network of rebar that is now about 1.5M underground. I\'m hoping that will be better than a ground rod.

    So, when you have time,let me know what you think of my 2P breaker theory!

    Cheers,

    Bob Hammerslag
    Pineda/Schäffter Compound
    Barangay Tan Pael
    5021 Tigbauan, Iloilo
    Philippines
    Mobile: 0920-600-8009
    http://goiloilo.com


Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 28, 2010, 10:25:09 PM
Dear Bob,

    You are very welcome and I have really enjoyed your blog on your house.  Maybe some day I\'ll drop by Iloilo and check your wiring?  I always do my best electrical inspections while sitting on the front porch chatting with a friend over a San Miguel, I also enjoy watching the breeze rustle the palm leaves.

    I have also posted our communications and a reference to your blog on our forum.  Please feel free to contact me any time, it\'s always nice to hear from you.

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Sun, 3/28/10, Robert Hammerslag wrote:


    From: Robert Hammerslag
    Subject: Re: Philippine electrical
    To: \"Harry Morgan\"
    Date: Sunday, March 28, 2010, 4:47 AM

    Harry,

    I\'ve made my post on Philippine wiring here: http://goiloilo.com/our-philippine-house-project-philippine-electrical-wiring/ and included your excellent essay as well as a plug for the forum.  I did take a little different perspective on the breakers and I may be wrong.  Remember you said you liked to argue about this stuff!  Comments and criticisms welcome.  Thanks again for your help.

    Best regards,

    Bob

    Pineda/Schäffter Compound
    Barangay Tan Pael
    5021 Tigbauan, Iloilo
    Philippines
    Mobile: 0920-600-8009
    http://goiloilo.com

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: DoctorM on July 13, 2010, 10:35:11 AM
There appears to me to be some misinformation being given or assumed about the Philippine electrical standards.  It might help to discuss the two primary residential electrical systems worldwide -- The US system, and virtually everybody else, which we will call the European system.  The Philippine system is generally half an American system – without the grounding required for 110 volt outlets.

US SYSTM
The US system provides 220 volt electrical service to every residential house.  The electrical feed consists of two hot feed wires.  Each feed wire is 110 volts measured to ground.  But the two feed wires are 180 degrees out of phase with each other.  Across the two feed wires, you get 220 volts because the wires are opposite polarity.  That makes the US residential system a 110 volt, two-phase system. 

These two hot feed wires connect to two separate hot busses in the circuit breaker box.  There is a third neutral bus for the neutral and ground wires.  The US circuit breaker box is always grounded.  The US circuit breaker box is designed so that a 110 volt circuit connects to a single circuit breaker, while a 220 volt circuit connects through two circuit breakers.  The US breaker box design connects adjacent circuit breakers to a separate hot bus, which allows the 220 volt circuit breaker pair to be connected as a double-pole – that is, they can be thrown open or closed simultaneously.       

Few US household appliances actually use 220 volts.  However central air conditioning compressor motors, and shop tools with electrical motors often do use 220 volts.  Other appliances that plug into a 220 volt receptacle, such as an electric oven or an automatic clothes dryer, may actually just run two separate 110 volt circuits within the appliance. 

The US system literally uses the ground as part of the electrical circuit.  You don\'t feel it, but a ground connection is essential to the US electrical system -- you cannot get 110 volts without connecting to ground.  The neutral buss, and the circuit breaker box itself, are always connected to ground using a heavy copper wire attached to a copper rod driven at least 18 inches into the soil.   

US wiring inside the house consist of three wires – a hot wire through the circuit breaker, a neutral wire connected to the neutral buss, and a ground safety wire connected to the circuit breaker box.  If a metal conduit is used, it may substitute for third safety ground wire.  Both the US neutral wire, and the ground safety wires are connected to ground, but they serve different purposes.  The neutral wire completes the appliance circuit from the hot feed wire, thru the appliance circuit, and then to ground and back to the generator.  The safety ground wire, on the other hand, never connects to the hot feed wire except by accident.  Its purpose is to drain off any electrical leakage from the appliance to the exterior of the appliance that a human may touch.  The safety ground wire utilizes the third prong on a three prong receptacle, which prevents your electrocution should the appliance casing inadvertently become electrically hot through a short. 


EUROPEAN SYSTEM
The European system also provides 220 volt service to residences -- but through a single hot feed wire.  The single feed wire is 220 volts measured to ground.  If there is a second feed wire to a European house, it is a neutral wire – not hot unless an appliance is turned on.  Inside the “European” house, there may be two wires – one hot and one neutral.  But outside the house, the neutral may just go to ground, because most localities on the European system consider it too expensive to run a neutral wire all the way back to the generator when the ground will accomplish the same thing at no cost.  Europeans do not use 110 volt appliances, and you cannot get 110 volts out of the European system.  If you need 110 volts, you must use a transformer. 

PHILIPPINE SYSTEM
I can’t speak for all areas in the Philippines, but the localities I have been to use the American two-phase service – consisting of two hot 110 volt wires 180 degrees out of phase with each other.  Both these hot feed wires connect to the main generator. The circuit breaker box has no neutral buss and does not normally connect to ground.  That works in the Philippines because only 220 volt appliances are sold there. 

However, because the service is 110 volt two phase, two circuit breakers are necessary for every household circuit. The breaker box is designed so adjacent circuit breakers connect to separate busses.  Every circuit breaker must be part of a double-pole pair – to be thrown open or closed simultaneously.  However, it is very easy for the connector bar to fall off, and if only one circuit breaker is turned off, the appliance will still be hot to ground – possibly through your body – so always make sure to throw circuit breaker switches in pairs. 

There are always two hot wires to every electrical outlet.  Each side of the electrical outlet is hot.  There are no neutral wires, and a safety ground wire is not employed.  The circuit box itself may not be grounded.

EUROPEAN EXPATS bringing European appliance only face the consternation of having to plug into a US-style two blade outlet that normally is a 110 volt outlet.  The US-style three-prong plug is also only used in grounded 110 volt circuits in the US and the third prong is useless on a normal Philippine electrical circuit. Other than having to use a plug adapter, European appliances work just fine in the Philippines.   

AMERICAN EXPATS bringing 110 volt appliances into the Philippines must either use a 110 volt transformer, or modify the house circuit to tap into the 110 volt service.  It is all too easy to plug your 110 volt appliance into what looks to the American as a normal 110 volt outlet, but in the Philippines is a 220 volt outlet – with the consequence of a fried American appliance.  110 volt transformers are widely available in the Philippines, and relatively cheap. 

If you bring American 220 volt appliances, such as electric water heaters, air conditioners, ovens, or ranges, you have to be careful.  Many of these may plug into a 220 volt outlet in the US, but their internal wiring is only designed to use 110 volts.  Also, all 220 volt circuits in the US use a three-prong plug, with the third prong serving as neutral and safety ground.  Philippine 220 volt circuits are not grounded, and for that reason, your American 220 volt appliances may not work, and may be fried. 

MODYFYING THE FILIPINO HOUSE CIRCUIT.
All one has to do to get 110 volts out of the Filipino system is add in the missing pieces – a neutral buss in the circuit breaker box, ground the neutral buss physically to the earth with a thick wire connected to a copper rod driven at least 18 inches into the soil, remove one of the hot wires running to the selected outlet and replace it with neutral wire from the neutral bus – viola, you have 110 volt service.  If you are going to install three-prong plugs, then you should also run a separate bare wire from the neutral bus to the third prong receptacle (for the round pin on the plug.)

Note that every 220 volt circuit you convert yields two 110 volt outlets, as a 110 volt outlet only has one circuit breaker and one hot wire to it.

If you are smart, you will also want to replace all your flat blade 220 volt outlets with the round pin European outlet.  Then you never have to ever worry about inadvertently plugging your 110 volt appliance into a 220 volt outlet and frying the appliance.

I hope this clears up the confusion.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: dylanaz on July 20, 2010, 06:19:09 AM
If you are smart, you will also want to replace all your flat blade 220 volt outlets with the round pin European outlet.  Then you never have to ever worry about inadvertently plugging your 110 volt appliance into a 220 volt outlet and frying the appliance.

Good info THANKS !

I just fried a nice photo and DVD printer that was 110v - luckily all I had to do was replace a capacitor in the internal  Power Supply - but im going to read this post of yours a few times for the tips...

Good stuff !
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: dylanaz on July 23, 2010, 08:00:45 AM
After reading Doc\'s post again I decided to test out my electricity usage 1 more time...

Turning on ALL fans in the house - got my meter to 0.70 consumption....

Now heres the shocker...

Turned my A/C unit to high and it went to 4.0 !!!

Every week with that AC on is a MONTH WITH FANS ON AND NO AC !!!!

Well - I need A/C for at least the computer room - so turned the 0.6 HP AC window unit to LOW AC and dropped usage to 1.20 !!!

I CAN LIVE WITH THAT !!!

CHECK YOUR METERS !!! That little discovery can cut my bill by MORE THAN 50% !!!!
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Friscomama on July 29, 2010, 04:06:24 AM
Hi,
I\'m new in here and I\'ve been reading some of the posts in the forum.

I\'m planning to build a commercial bldg and starting a business back home.  I came to the USA as a child and now wanting to go back.  Life here in the USA is not the same as when I was growing up.

So, with that said, I was warned that the electricity in the Philippines is very high.  Thanks to Dylanaz\'s post, it reminded me of what is the average BTU for an AC in Manila.  I could be posting the wrong question, not very experienced in electrical aside from being a user.  Any information would be greatly appreciated.  We are talking about a bldg approximately 2000 sq meters with high ceilings.  And, oh, thanks for this forum Don.  :D

Friscomama
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: RUFUS on July 29, 2010, 06:25:50 AM
Friscomama
Welcome to the forum...
A 2000sqm building would require a commercial cooling unit, not the typical wall mount ones that you may be thinking of.
A 10,000 btu wall/window unit will do about 50-60sqm
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Friscomama on July 29, 2010, 07:03:34 AM
Friscomama
Welcome to the forum...
A 2000sqm building would require a commercial cooling unit, not the typical wall mount ones that you may be thinking of.
A 10,000 btu wall/window unit will do about 50-60sqm

Hi Rufus!  ;D  Kamusta?

Thank you so much for your answer.  What\'s the average cost per BTU for electricity?
Salamat po,
Friscomama
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: dylanaz on July 29, 2010, 08:38:56 PM
Friscomama
Welcome to the forum...
A 2000sqm building would require a commercial cooling unit, not the typical wall mount ones that you may be thinking of.
A 10,000 btu wall/window unit will do about 50-60sqm

Hi Rufus!  ;D  Kamusta?

Thank you so much for your answer.  What\'s the average cost per BTU for electricity?
Salamat po,
Friscomama

Im not sure about converting BTU\'s but my last bill near manila was P11.87 per kWh when all misc fees were factored in...

Or roughly USD 26 cents per kWh !

\"WOW !\" - Says the guy with a load controller on his USA property and who even then watched the meter with a passion !  :D


Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Friscomama on July 30, 2010, 10:09:14 AM
Gentlemen,

You guys have been so helpful and great.  Thank you for the information.   Now, I just need to get familiar with The Philippine geography.  :D ;D

Friscomama
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: GregW on July 31, 2010, 05:11:43 AM
Geography?  Here\'s a couple maps that may help you to become acquainted with where everything is.

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.ephilippine.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/philippines-map.gif&imgrefurl=http://www.ephilippine.com/philippines-maps/&h=550&w=497&sz=56&tbnid=jja-v5Nrc_bRFM:&tbnh=133&tbnw=120&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmap%2Bof%2Bphilippines&usg=__hS4rOHOzI0lv7duwlLnD7Eo7A0U=&sa=X&ei=pD5TTJPmK4WksQPRzbzZAg&ved=0CDkQ9QEwBg

This one is color coded and has the provinces numbered so one can easily find them.

http://www.philsite.net/philippine_map.htm
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Friscomama on July 31, 2010, 11:49:01 AM
Geography?  Here\'s a couple maps that may help you to become acquainted with where everything is.

[url]http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.ephilippine.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/philippines-map.gif&imgrefurl=http://www.ephilippine.com/philippines-maps/&h=550&w=497&sz=56&tbnid=jja-v5Nrc_bRFM:&tbnh=133&tbnw=120&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmap%2Bof%2Bphilippines&usg=__hS4rOHOzI0lv7duwlLnD7Eo7A0U=&sa=X&ei=pD5TTJPmK4WksQPRzbzZAg&ved=0CDkQ9QEwBg[/url]

This one is color coded and has the provinces numbered so one can easily find them.

[url]http://www.philsite.net/philippine_map.htm[/url]

Maraming salamat po Greg.   ;D
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Tall_man on August 09, 2010, 02:52:15 PM
For what its worth, the residential tarrif here in Thailand is about 3.5 baht per kWh; thats about 11 cent US. I rent a room and the land lord tacks on 100% surcharge (7 baht / kWh) so I am paying 22 cents per kWh  ::)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on August 29, 2010, 01:15:00 AM
Dear Noel,

    Short answer is it all depends on what the neutral is doing, is it there to provide 110 volts for the mag starter coil, work light, or other 110 volt component?  If this is the case your choices are to replace the 110 volt components with ones for 220 volts, or to buy a 220 to 220 volt transformer and wire the secondary of the transformer to the USA style.  If your mag starter uses a 110 volt coil, you \"might\" be able to find a 220 volt coil for it, or replace the whole contactor with a 220 volt unit.  If you have a 110 volt work light, simply replace the bulb with a 220 volt bulb.  If your saw has one of those neat little laser lights for the cutting mark and it used 110 volts, it will have to be replaced or dis-connected.

    As for the 220 volt 3 hp motor, it doesn\'t care if it\'s 220 volts come from +110 & -110 volts or from +220 & 0 volts.

    The following values are approximate since I can\'t see the motor and I hate having to dig in the code book even if I could see the motor:  If you opt for a 220 to 220 volt transformer, you will need at the very least a 4.4 kw (4400 watts), bare minimum.  And you will need 10 gauge copper wire.  The following might cause some confusion, especially for engineers, but I will include it also as a \"rule of thumb\": Your short circuit/ground fault protection should be \"about\" 60 amps and your overload protection should be \"about\" 25 amps

    Also, and I can\'t stress this point enough, make sure the metal frame of the saw is properly grounded !!!

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Fri, 8/27/10, Noel DelRosario wrote:


    From: Noel DelRosario
    Subject: Philippine 220V wiring question
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Friday, August 27, 2010, 6:15 PM

    Hello Harry,

    My name is Noel DelRosario, I came across your article (http://goiloilo.com/our-philippine-house-project-philippine-electrical-wiring/) regarding the wiring practice in the Philippines.  I plan to ship my woodworking tools in Manila.  I want to make sure that they will work in Manila, and I have been searching the net for some answers.  Yes I\'ve contacted the manufacturers technical support, and they are not familiar with the 2 wire 220v.

    As described in your article, the US 220v wiring will have 2 110v wires, 1 neutral, and 1 bare for ground.  My table saw is wired here in the US as such.  It has 3 hp motor, 220v, 60hz wired from the electrical panel to the magnetic starter with on/off switch.

    Please advise how can I wire the 3 wires (dual 110 and neutral from the table saw) to a typical residential Philippine wiring of 1 hot 220v and the neutral from the magnetic starter terminals to the wall power source.  I realize that I will need to change the receptacles from 3 prongs to 2 but that the easy part.  If I do then there is one extra wire (110v); how can I wire 2 110v terminals and 1 neutral to receive 1 220v and 1 neutral power source.  I hope I make the question clear.  I\'ve attached a typical wiring for the saw, you will find it towards the last pages of the attached.

    I am shooting at moon here hoping you can answer my questions.

    Thanks in advance,
    Noel

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on September 28, 2010, 01:45:42 AM
Dear Matt,

    Since your saw is already wired for 220 volts, it will work just fine in the PI.  The third wire you have in the power cord now is for grounding the metal frame & other metal parts of the saw for safety.  But most of the power receptacles in the PI have only the 2 circuit wires, they are missing the ground wire.  All of the electric receptacles I have seen in the PI are the standard 2 prong 15 amp units we use in the USA.  You will likely have to install a new 2 prong plug on the power cord and find another way to ground the frame of the saw.

Best always,
Harry.

PS,
    You forgot to wish me \"Happy Birthday\", today is my birthday.

   

--- On Mon, 9/27/10, Matt Wilson wrote:


    From: Matt Wilson
    Subject: wireing a table saw in Philippines
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Monday, September 27, 2010, 10:51 AM

    Hi Harry I was wanting to ship my tabe saw to the Philippines but I dont know how to wire it to the two-wire 220 volts they have there.  My table saw motor works on eather 115volts or 230 volts 60 HZ ; Right now it is wired for 230 volts with three wires. How do I wire the motor to the two wire, 220 volts they have in the Philippines ?  Thanks Matt Wilson
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on September 28, 2010, 09:27:00 PM
Dear Matt,

    There is one thing I forgot to mention, I am getting older.  Is there anything on the saw that operates on 110 volts?  In the past on 220 appliances with only a 3 wire power cord, manufacturers used to use the ground wire for 110 AC return if there was anything on the unit that operated on 110 volts.  Now we run 4 wires for 220: 2 circuit wires, 1 neutral, and 1 grounding wire.  I addressed these and other issues in a 4 page article I posted on our Forum.  On page 4 of the article is comments for a table saw I gave to another person with the same question as yours.  You can read all of my comments here:
http://livinginthephilippines.com/forum/index.php/topic,661.0.html

    If you aren\'t already a member of out sister site, you should join, there is info on just about everything you could ask about things in the PI.

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Mon, 9/27/10, Matt Wilson wrote:


    From: Matt Wilson
    Subject: RE: wireing a table saw in Philippines
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Monday, September 27, 2010, 9:12 PM

    Harry thanks for the information about how to wire up my table saw in the Philippines, it doesn\'t sound as hard as I thought it might be. I am sure I can handle putting on the new receptacle for the two wires and I can figure out how to ground the chassis to earth ground. I can\'t thank you enough for the help, I really appreciate your expertise advice, THANKS!  Regards, Matt Wilson in Pillar Point Harbor, CA.
     
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n on September 29, 2010, 02:40:09 AM
Happy birthday Harry

I\'m sure I\'ll get to use your words of wisdom somewhere down the line
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on October 06, 2010, 10:27:19 PM
Dear Justin,

    It is very very important to ground your panel box, as well as metal parts of appliances.  If it isn\'t grounded there is nothing to shut the circuit down in the event a hot wire somehow touches the metal.  The metal will be energized and you will get shocked if you touch it.  I doubt it will do any good to fire your current electrician and hire another, as the second electrician will have been trained about the same.  It might be better to politely try to get your current electrician to change his ways?

    Yes, you can ground electric appliances individually.  It is difficult to install grounding outlets after the house is built if there is no ground wire run to each outlet.

Best always,
Harry.

--- On Tue, 10/5/10, Justin McDonald wrote:


    From: Justin McDonald
    Subject: no gorund
    To: harry80020@yahoo.com
    Date: Tuesday, October 5, 2010, 6:45 PM

    My electrician is not grounding the panel box and no ground wires are going to the outlets what do I do, can i ground appliances individually, what about grounding outlets, help

    Justin
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on October 14, 2010, 01:14:24 AM
I forgot to mention this, thanks that I got a reminder from a friend named Terry:

One thing I would add to your article is that 110V surge suppressors don\'t work on the 220V
systems. I found this out when I absentmindedly plugged one in while in Russia. It did it\'s
job and blew as soon as I powered it up. Silly me. All I was really needing was a multi-
outlet extension for my equipment. What I got was a puff of smoke and no more power.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: barongoy on November 09, 2010, 05:34:59 AM

MODYFYING THE FILIPINO HOUSE CIRCUIT.
All one has to do to get 110 volts out of the Filipino system is add in the missing pieces – a neutral buss in the circuit breaker box, ground the neutral buss physically to the earth with a thick wire connected to a copper rod driven at least 18 inches into the soil, remove one of the hot wires running to the selected outlet and replace it with neutral wire from the neutral bus – viola, you have 110 volt service.  If you are going to install three-prong plugs, then you should also run a separate bare wire from the neutral bus to the third prong receptacle (for the round pin on the plug.)

Note that every 220 volt circuit you convert yields two 110 volt outlets, as a 110 volt outlet only has one circuit breaker and one hot wire to it.

If you are smart, you will also want to replace all your flat blade 220 volt outlets with the round pin European outlet.  Then you never have to ever worry about inadvertently plugging your 110 volt appliance into a 220 volt outlet and frying the appliance.

I hope this clears up the confusion.

[/quote]
My wife wants to have 110v for the entire house and a few 220v outlet? what would you suggest we do? BTW replacing the 220v flat blade outlet with the round pin European outlet is a wonderful idea.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on November 09, 2010, 05:42:28 AM

MODYFYING THE FILIPINO HOUSE CIRCUIT.
All one has to do to get 110 volts out of the Filipino system is add in the missing pieces – a neutral buss in the circuit breaker box, ground the neutral buss physically to the earth with a thick wire connected to a copper rod driven at least 18 inches into the soil, remove one of the hot wires running to the selected outlet and replace it with neutral wire from the neutral bus – viola, you have 110 volt service. 
I hope this clears up the confusion.


Barongoy,

You\'re still missing the biggest piece: The ground on your transformer. You\'re relying on that copper rod stuck in the dirt to complete your circuit all the way back to where your 110 volt service originated: At the generator or the Sub-station.

Won\'t happen!!!

Billy
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: barongoy on November 10, 2010, 10:50:02 AM
I see.

Some acquaintance have suggested that we have our own 15 or 25 Kva 110v transformer installed at the pole. Is that possible and how much do you think that would that cost?
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on November 10, 2010, 12:04:33 PM
I see.

Some acquaintance have suggested that we have our own 15 or 25 Kva 110v transformer installed at the pole. Is that possible and how much do you think that would that cost?

Quite a few have done this. You\'ll have to get the estimate from your Electric Provider\'s estimator.

Billy
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: barongoy on November 10, 2010, 02:28:34 PM


I think we will do it that way; have a transformer installed at the pole and have 110v outlets in the house. It cost more but it will be good for the appliances.

Thank you.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: trevor on November 16, 2010, 05:52:55 PM
Barongoy, Where we live in north Luzon there is only a single phase (2 wire) 220 volts circuit. Actually it is not even 220ac but more like 190vac. There is no way you can add any ground to get 110vac. Yes if you have a three wire supply like what we have in the U.S.A. Two legs would read 220vac. ( above ground we call that). from any one of the above ground leg to the neutral or ground bare wire that would produce 110vac.
Adding a line transformer would not produce 110vac.  There line supply is not set up for that here in Neuva Vicaya where we live. Now i know that places like Baguio, Subic and Clarke where U.S. had military bases they have the three wire system like what we have in the U.S.
We recently had a transformer installed, 25kva. it cost us P60,000.00 for a reconditioned one. What it does is stabilize the supply voltage to our house. Now we have 228vac instead of190vac. Seems to help as all our neighbours lost there power in the recent typhoon but we did not.

Trevor
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on November 16, 2010, 06:33:28 PM
Barongoy, Where we live in north Luzon there is only a single phase (2 wire) 220 volts circuit. Actually it is not even 220ac but more like 190vac. There is no way you can add any ground to get 110vac. Yes if you have a three wire supply like what we have in the U.S.A. Two legs would read 220vac. ( above ground we call that). from any one of the above ground leg to the neutral or ground bare wire that would produce 110vac.
Adding a line transformer would not produce 110vac.  There line supply is not set up for that here in Neuva Vicaya where we live. Now i know that places like Baguio, Subic and Clarke where U.S. had military bases they have the three wire system like what we have in the U.S.
We recently had a transformer installed, 25kva. it cost us P60,000.00 for a reconditioned one. What it does is stabilize the supply voltage to our house. Now we have 228vac instead of190vac. Seems to help as all our neighbours lost there power in the recent typhoon but we did not.

Trevor

Trevor,

I should have been more area specific. Cebu is where I know of people having their Power Provider install a pole transformer just to serve them.

Barongoy never said where he lived. Barongoy, where do you live???

Billy
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: barongoy on November 25, 2010, 10:00:57 AM
I am currently living in Dumaguete city, Negros Oriental. We are not sure yet we are going to build here or get a condo unit in Cebu City. Will there be problem in these places as far as getting the 110v?
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on November 25, 2010, 12:14:46 PM
I am currently living in Dumaguete city, Negros Oriental. We are not sure yet we are going to build here or get a condo unit in Cebu City. Will there be problem in these places as far as getting the 110v?

Where you want to buy property, walk out on the road and see their poles and transformers that are in place now. Look for the 3 insulated bushings on the side of the transformer. The center one is wired only when providing 110v.

Or go by your Service Provider\'s yard and look at the nameplate on the side of a transformer.

Billy
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: aerosick on November 25, 2010, 12:26:42 PM
The transformer should look like this:

(http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c119/aerosick/Mine/OHTransformer.jpg)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on November 27, 2010, 12:29:03 AM
Re: TV filters

Dear Ray,

After I posted the message about 1 of your fuses being in the neutral leg, I
got to thinking and that would be almost impossible to do to only one circuit,
although Philippine electricians are resourceful. Maybe the light switch on the
problem circuit is in the neutral, instead of the hot wire?

Usually here in the States, the power company installs lightning \"blow-outs\"
on their high voltage wires going to the primary side of the transformers. If
and when lightning does hit the wire, the blow-out shorts it direct to a ground
wire going down the pole to a ground rod or coil of bare copper wire under the
base of the pole. A lightning hit almost always destroys the blow-out and it
has to be replaced, or you have no protection at all. My friend Billy Reese
would be the one to talk to, he is a retired lineman electrician living
somewhere in the Philippines.

I think your wife might be correct. Maybe the reason we haven\'t been hit by
lightning is we don\'t have a dog?

Best always,
Harry

--- In LivingInThePhilippines3@yahoogroups.com, \"kano or just call me joe\"
wrote:
>
> Hi Harry, Actually both circuits are on the high side (hot, L1 , etc,). That\'s
what\'s strange about it...I first thought \" ok, blew a fuse on that circuit\",
guess what ? Nope, both fuses are good.
> We have the (in)famous 2 wire system in this bahay .High side and Neutral
(really ground). I built spec. houses a long time ago in California. I\'m fairly
well rounded in the trades, but no expert. I built equipment for the
semiconductor industry in Dallas,Texas also. Just another day in the life...
>
> I like what your wife does, however my asawa says it happened because I was
playing with the dog at the time!!!! Damn dog, probable static buildup caused
it!!! Just a joke, son ...
>
> A solution in the US, beside grounded service, is a lightning arrester device,
that you install in your electrical service box. Have not seen any here... Of
course in Cebu or Manila might find them...
>
> Ray in Siargao
> Amoting!
>


Dear Ray,

I would \"guess\" the circuit you lost the 6 bulbs on has the fuse in the
neutral wire, instead of the hot wire? But this is only a guess because
lightning has such a high & quick spike that anything can happen, almost always
undesirable. The switches, wiring, and circuit equipment in your house are only
rated for 300-600 volts max. Even standard household circuit breakers & fuses
can only clear a 10,000 amp spike \"somewhat safely\". Lightning can have volts &
amps many times higher.

Power strips with surge protection were never meant for and can not take a
lightning strike. Lightning rods would protect the house itself, but not your
electric system. If the lightning strikes the power line away from your house,
it is very likely to come on in through the wires.

You might try what my wife, mean old Madel, does when we have a lightning storm:
close the curtains. It must work, because we have lived through all the
lightning storms here?

Best always,
Harry.

--- In LivingInThePhilippines3@yahoogroups.com, \"kano\" wrote:
>
> Oh, I\'ve been there before... 2 weeks ago we had a lightning strike close by.
Lost a TV we didn\'t unplug. The kicker is we lost 6 of those firefly screw in
florescent lamps. Never had that happen before... We have only 2 fused circuits
in the house (a rental)and all the disruption occured only on one circuit. Go
figure!
> We \"always\" (except when we don\'t. ha ha ) unplug the TVs and computer. Works
like a champ. I had never lost the lamps thou! Anybody else experience that?
>
>
> Ray in Siargao
> Amoting!
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on November 27, 2010, 12:36:04 AM
Lightning protection Asawa style:

from Ray:
I like what your wife does, however my asawa says it happened because I was
playing with the dog at the time!!!! Damn dog, probable static buildup caused
it!!! Just a joke, son ...

from Ken:
No need to close the curtains Harry, at least according to my asawa; just make
sure the mirrors are covered to stop the lightning getting in.


from Ron:
Your wife has a simple solution! My wife and in-laws rush around the house
placing coins in every corner of each room. It must work too because we\'ve
never been struck by lightening...


from Harry:
You might try what my wife, mean old Madel, does when we have a lightning
storm: close the curtains. It must work, because we have lived through all the
lightning storms here?
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: barongoy on November 27, 2010, 01:41:47 PM
I am currently living in Dumaguete city, Negros Oriental. We are not sure yet we are going to build here or get a condo unit in Cebu City. Will there be problem in these places as far as getting the 110v?

Where you want to buy property, walk out on the road and see their poles and transformers that are in place now. Look for the 3 insulated bushings on the side of the transformer. The center one is wired only when providing 110v.

Or go by your Service Provider\'s yard and look at the nameplate on the side of a transformer.

Billy


Thank you Bill. 
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Dan on January 24, 2011, 06:18:19 PM
I read somewhere that a surge suppressor is useless unless it is plugged into an outlet that has a ground wire.  Can someone please verify if this is correct.

Thanks,

Dan
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: coutts00 on January 25, 2011, 06:55:32 AM
A surge suppressor is designed to absorb transient voltage. This is not an over current device, over current devices have a small breaker built in that can be reset. A surge suppressor has a voltage regulator built in to it and generally are single use items. They are generally designed to stop a surge, i.e. a 3000v spike from hitting your precious stereo or digital TV or computer power supply, they are not designed for continuous use and should not be confused with a voltage regulator which is often a much larger device.

Taken from Wikipedia... \"A surge protector (or surge suppressor) is an appliance designed to protect electrical devices from voltage spikes. A surge protector attempts to regulate the voltage supplied to an electric device by either blocking or by shorting to ground voltages above a safe threshold. The following text discusses specifications and components relevant only to the type of protector that diverts (shorts) a voltage spike to ground. Many power strips have surge protection built in; these are typically clearly labeled as such. However, sometimes power strips that do not provide surge protection are erroneously referred to as surge protectors\"

As you can see some are designed to short the transient voltage to ground and other are not. To be on the safe side always ensure the device is connected to a grounded outlet.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Steve & Myrlita on January 25, 2011, 08:58:37 AM
I read somewhere that a surge suppressor is useless unless it is plugged into an outlet that has a ground wire.  Can someone please verify if this is correct.

Thanks,

Dan
Simple I know, but does the unit itself have a ground pin on the plug? If it has, I\'d guess it is required to be grounded.

Most everything you buy here has just two pins.
If memory serves, I believe most power strips with built in surge protection uses a varistor across the AC line to choke out the transient spike in voltage. My experience has been that if it was a sharp spike, the varistor shorts out thus causing the AC fuse to blow thus removing the AC from the unit. Supposedly, the smaller spikes are dampened by the varistor thus allowing the device to operate without blowing the AC fuse. \"If memory serves\". Aah, sucks to get old. God Bless......
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Dan on January 26, 2011, 09:47:47 AM
I have my laptop plugged into a 2-pronged power strip with an off and on switch.  Power strip is then plugged into a 500 watt Omni AVR from Ace hardware.  The AVR is also 2-pronged and plugged into the wall socket.  Am I under the false impression that this will protect my laptop from electrical spikes?

Dan
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: coutts00 on January 26, 2011, 03:49:54 PM
The AVR is what it says, an Automatic Voltage Regulator. It will regulate the voltage to 110 or 220, it will probably have outlets for both. If the voltage is high, it will bring it down. If the voltage is low, it will not make it higher, however your laptop power supply is probably an automatic switching supply, if you look on it, the supply will probably have 110/220~240 written on it as an input voltage, so it will handle almost any voltage between the high and the low voltage.

To get a better device you would need an UPS, Colin has one for his computer but it is always switching when the power drops lower than 190v as the UPS cannot boost power beyond a certain amount without switching to battery and the inverter to boost the power.

Does your AVR have a green flying lead or a pig tail, a green wire attached to the device, that you could attach to a grounded outlet? Is there a screw on the back of the device with a ground symbol on it for you to attach a separate wire to if you wanted to?

Wayne
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: BC Boy on January 26, 2011, 07:31:39 PM
I need reliable power for online business.....

The AVR is not enough, i need a generator. Not to run whole house but just so i dont loose a skype call to a client. The AVR will be a nice buffer when the power goes out(as it always does... goof doom it) till i can go out and crank over a generator.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Dan on January 28, 2011, 09:40:06 AM

Does your AVR have a green flying lead or a pig tail, a green wire attached to the device, that you could attach to a grounded outlet? Is there a screw on the back of the device with a ground symbol on it for you to attach a separate wire to if you wanted to?

Wayne
[/quote]

The AVR does not have a green flying lead or any place to attach a ground wire in the back.  It does have a 3 amp fuse that I suppose will blow if there is a big enough power surge.

Dan
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on January 28, 2011, 11:01:42 PM
Dear Jay,

    I have heard of 1 phase to 3 phase converters, but have no actual hands on experience with them.  I \"think\" what they actually do is convert the single phase AC supply to DC, then invert it to 3 phase AC?  Some 3 phase high frequency electric welders are made this way.  I wouldn\'t think there would be a problem as long as the converter is large enough to handle the load.  I suggest you buy a unit that is at least 125% of the total load it will be supplying.  The formula for figuring 3 phase wattage is: volts x amps x the square root of 3.  I would \"think\" this formula is already figured into the 3.8 kw, but you might want to check?  What ever, a 5 kw unit \"should\" do the job, if the 3 phase formula is already figured into the 3.8 kw.

Best always,
Harry.




    Hi Harry,

    Thank you. I\'ll talk to the power company when I get back this June.

    Aside from that, I also did some searching and came up with this web site that sells 1P-to-3P converters http://www.phaseconverter.com/ . The pricing is modest as compared to setting up a 3P line in the Philippines. A one-tonner ice-block machine has a 3.8 kw compressor. Is it feasible to use these converters? Appreciate your advice.

    thanks,
    Jay

 

        Dear Jay,

            Yes, almost all power companies generate in 3 phase and they run all 3 phases throughout their distribution/transmission system.  Although only one of the phases is usually supplied to the house systems.  You will need to talk to your power company to see how close all 3 phases are to your house and if the power company would be willing to let you have 3 phase service in your home.  As far as I know, here in the USA they don\'t allow 3 phase service in most residences.

        Best always,
        Harry.

 
            Hi Harry,

            Good day.
            I read your article about the electricity in the Philippines  and you touched about the 3-phase electricity. Is this 3P directly supplied by the electric company or is it from a converter? I\'m planning to install a one-ton ice block machine but it requires 3P.

            thanks,
            Jay


Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: cogon88 on January 29, 2011, 07:50:24 AM
Jay, why do you not just have the manufacturer of the ice machine substitue a single phase 220 volt 60 hz 3.8 KW electric motor. 3.8 KW is a small motor only 5 HP there many of that size here that are only single phase

I have 3 phase power at my rice mill cost over 4,000 USD just to install 2 poles and run the 13,200 volt lines to our transformer on the building easier to convert the ice maker to single phase motor less headaches in the long run

Tom / Roxas City  fg 
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: richardsinger on January 29, 2011, 04:33:03 PM
Dear Jay,

    I have heard of 1 phase to 3 phase converters, but have no actual hands on experience with them.  I \"think\" what they actually do is convert the single phase AC supply to DC, then invert it to 3 phase AC?  Some 3 phase high frequency electric welders are made this way.  I wouldn\'t think there would be a problem as long as the converter is large enough to handle the load.  I suggest you buy a unit that is at least 125% of the total load it will be supplying.  The formula for figuring 3 phase wattage is: volts x amps x the square root of 3.  I would \"think\" this formula is already figured into the 3.8 kw, but you might want to check?  What ever, a 5 kw unit \"should\" do the job, if the 3 phase formula is already figured into the 3.8 kw.

Best always,
Harry.




    Hi Harry,

    Thank you. I\'ll talk to the power company when I get back this June.

    Aside from that, I also did some searching and came up with this web site that sells 1P-to-3P converters [url]http://www.phaseconverter.com/[/url] . The pricing is modest as compared to setting up a 3P line in the Philippines. A one-tonner ice-block machine has a 3.8 kw compressor. Is it feasible to use these converters? Appreciate your advice.

    thanks,
    Jay

 

        Dear Jay,

            Yes, almost all power companies generate in 3 phase and they run all 3 phases throughout their distribution/transmission system.  Although only one of the phases is usually supplied to the house systems.  You will need to talk to your power company to see how close all 3 phases are to your house and if the power company would be willing to let you have 3 phase service in your home.  As far as I know, here in the USA they don\'t allow 3 phase service in most residences.

        Best always,
        Harry.

 
            Hi Harry,

            Good day.
            I read your article about the electricity in the Philippines  and you touched about the 3-phase electricity. Is this 3P directly supplied by the electric company or is it from a converter? I\'m planning to install a one-ton ice block machine but it requires 3P.

            thanks,
            Jay





Hi Harry. I\'m not sure who is the intended reader for your post, because there appear to be multiple posts there and I am a bit confused by it. Anyway, I just want to say that you should be careful about kVA and kW, because it makes a difference. Usually machines (motors and generators) are rated in kVA because the power factor, and therefore the kW, varies with loading. Your power converter has to be able to supply the maximum load current at whatever power factor the load is operating at. Power in kW, is always lower than the kVA figure, so make sure you have enough current capacity in your converter for the kVA rating, not just the kW.

Richard
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 07, 2011, 03:58:50 AM
Dear Richard,

    kVA & kW are the same thing, both are the mathematic formula for \"single phase\" power .  I think you mean kVAR (volts x amps x reactive load)?  Usually the power company will add capacitors to the line to keep their reactive angle as close to zero as possible.

    By the way, to figure the wattage of a 3-phase load, volts x amps x 1.732 (the square root of 3) x any reactive load

Best always, 


Hi Harry. I\'m not sure who is the intended reader for your post, because there appear to be multiple posts there and I am a bit confused by it. Anyway, I just want to say that you should be careful about kVA and kW, because it makes a difference. Usually machines (motors and generators) are rated in kVA because the power factor, and therefore the kW, varies with loading. Your power converter has to be able to supply the maximum load current at whatever power factor the load is operating at. Power in kW, is always lower than the kVA figure, so make sure you have enough current capacity in your converter for the kVA rating, not just the kW.

Richard
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: richardsinger on March 07, 2011, 06:31:29 AM
Dear Richard,

    kVA & kW are the same thing, both are the mathematic formula for \"single phase\" power .  I think you mean kVAR (volts x amps x reactive load)?  Usually the power company will add capacitors to the line to keep their reactive angle as close to zero as possible.

    By the way, to figure the wattage of a 3-phase load, volts x amps x 1.732 (the square root of 3) x any reactive load

Hi Harry. KVA and KW are only the same when the load is purely resistive. When you are talking about rotating machines the load has a reactive component which puts the voltage and current waveforms out of phase with each other. In this condition the KW = KVA cosØ where Ø is the phase angle between voltage and current and cosØ is called the power factor. The bigger the angle, the bigger the difference between KVA and KW.

The power company may have capacitors to control power factor, but that would be over wide areas. They are not able to control an individual\'s power factor because they do not know when an individual machine will be turned on or off.

For 3 phase balanced load, the power is ?3 x V x A x cosØ. Again, this is only equal to ?3 x V x A when the load is purely resistive and the phase angle Ø is zero.

Richard
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: dylanaz on March 10, 2011, 03:30:22 AM
Dear Richard,

    kVA & kW are the same thing, both are the mathematic formula for \"single phase\" power .  I think you mean kVAR (volts x amps x reactive load)?  Usually the power company will add capacitors to the line to keep their reactive angle as close to zero as possible.

    By the way, to figure the wattage of a 3-phase load, volts x amps x 1.732 (the square root of 3) x any reactive load

Hi Harry. KVA and KW are only the same when the load is purely resistive. When you are talking about rotating machines the load has a reactive component which puts the voltage and current waveforms out of phase with each other. In this condition the KW = KVA cosØ where Ø is the phase angle between voltage and current and cosØ is called the power factor. The bigger the angle, the bigger the difference between KVA and KW.

The power company may have capacitors to control power factor, but that would be over wide areas. They are not able to control an individual\'s power factor because they do not know when an individual machine will be turned on or off.

For 3 phase balanced load, the power is ?3 x V x A x cosØ. Again, this is only equal to ?3 x V x A when the load is purely resistive and the phase angle Ø is zero.

Richard


Is there a Google Translator for all this?   ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D  ;D
 

Ya - it basically means those \"ENERGY SAVERS\" you buy at the local malls do not work - because they need to be VARIABLE !

Now one day (added to my long TODO list) I will make my own \"ENERGY SAVER\" and have it be fully adjustable to account for whats being used in the house.

Almost like a LOAD CONTROLLER - but more of a LOAD SAVER or the likes - hahah

- I need a real electrician to work out the details.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: coutts00 on March 10, 2011, 05:00:14 AM
I think what you need is an electrical engineer.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n on March 11, 2011, 03:35:55 PM
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v244/twentyfirstcen/Electrocuted.gif)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on December 02, 2011, 10:28:27 PM
Dear Larry,

    Just leave the neutral wire on the inverter unconnected, insulated, & ungrounded; then use only the two 120 wires.   One of the 120 wires will have to be ground referenced, then it will become the neutral of the Philippine style 220 system.  The other 120 volt wire should now have 220 volts on it & it will be your hot wire.

    Might also be a good idea to check with the inverters manufacturer also.

Best always,
Harry.



Hi Harry .. Yes I need to use an inverter as I am off the electrical grid and am putting in a solar system to augment and replace my generator. .. So my problem is that the inverter is 120/240 output.. It has 3 wires-- each hot wire is 120 volts and then a neutral wire.. My Phil house is a 2 wire system-- 1 hot wire and a ground? So how do I go from the inverter to the house?? I know I have to go thru a sub panel but how is it going to work?? Thks for the help Larry



On Dec 1, 2011, at 4:12 AM, Harry Morgan wrote:

> Dear Larry,
>
>      Are you sure you want to use an inverter, inverters convert DC battery voltage to AC?  If you want 240 volts out of it, use the two 120 volt wires.  If you want 120 volts, use the neutral and either one of the hot wires.  A breaker box set up for Philippine style 240 volts can\'t be used for American 120/240 volts.
>
> Harry



> Subject: great Article on Phil electrics
> Hi harry..Just read your post on the electrical system in Phils..Very well done!!..I just had a few questions for you as I am not an electrician but would like to know how it is supposed to be done..I am bringing a magnum inverter (made in USA) to Phils and it is 120/240 VAC..The 120 lines are 180 out of phase and hooked up together will equal 240 volts.  So I will have the 3 wires—2, 120 volt wires and a neutral coming out of the inverter going to the supply panel..Now my house is 2 wire system..one hot and one ground?  so How do I hook up the 3 wires in the sub panel box and then have just one hot 240 coming out to hook up to my house.. Thanks so much for your help..will be definitely using an electrician but also want to make sure they do it right..thks larry
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on January 14, 2012, 11:00:38 PM
Hi John,


    Yes you can, just be sure to tape the old common so it\'s insulated.  I would have to know the amperage rating of the welder before I can tell you the wire size?  \"Generally\", 14 gauge is good for 15 amps, 12 gauge for 20 amps, 10 gauge for 30 amps, 8 gauge for 40 amps, 6 gauge for 50 amps.  I think the wire sold in the PI is metric now, getting to be the same in the USA too I think, drat.  I suggest you take the amperage rating from the name plate on the welder and multiply it by 1.25 (125%) and use this figure to size the wire & breaker.  If the number falls between 2 sizes, always round up to the next larger size.


Best always,

Harry.

From: John Sickler can
Subject: Hooking up 220 wielder from state
hi
Can I just hook up the two 110 line to the philippines 220 lines and leave the common   unhooked?
110 v to 220 hot
110 v to 220 ground
I did this with my air compressor and it is working
What gage wire do I need for this and breaker size
Thanks
John R Sickler
Maasin
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on January 16, 2012, 09:16:39 PM
Dear Brian,

    You know, I\'ve never messed with an oven inside to see how they work.  All I know about is how to run the power to them.  I know they have American/Canadian style 220/110 run to them here and I am wondering if they use only the 110 for the lower heat settings?  Also they might use 110 for the clock/timer?  If either is the case, then I don\'t think it could be used on Philippine 220?  I wish I could be of more help.

Best always,
Harry.


From: Lourdes Losanes

Subject: WIRIING A FOREIGN MADE 220V WALL OVEN

Hi Harry – My wife and I are building our retirement home in Iloilo near Lambunao. We are trying to hook up a wall oven unit we had shipped here from Canada. Do you know if this is possible. I read your article re-posted on myphilippinelife.com about the Philippine wiring system, our filipino electrician hasn’t had much luck for all his efforts. I am wondering if it is an issue of direct current versus alternating current. We tried to connect the black and red wires to the hot cable and the white to the zero volt return cable with ground but with no good results. Desperate for suggestions. Can you recommend an electrician we could hire?
Thanks, Brian Seyler

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: richardsinger on January 17, 2012, 07:03:30 AM
Harry, are you copying these posts from another forum? I can\'t seem to see the original posts, although I didn\'t check the very old posts.

Anyway the black and red wires are meant to be connected to 2 different (antiphase) live lines, and the white is neutral. In the American/Canadian power systems, this is done to increase the power delivery without having very high currents or any voltage above 120V. If you wanted to apply Philippine power to the oven, you could connect the red to live and the black to neutral, and insulate the white with tape. The problem with that though is that there might be a voltage on the casing of the oven, which is not a good idea. If you can\'t find a good electrician who is familiar with US appliances, it\'s better to replace the oven or else get a big transformer to provide the 2 phase-plus-neutral power needed.

Richard

Dear Brian,

    You know, I\'ve never messed with an oven inside to see how they work.  All I know about is how to run the power to them.  I know they have American/Canadian style 220/110 run to them here and I am wondering if they use only the 110 for the lower heat settings?  Also they might use 110 for the clock/timer?  If either is the case, then I don\'t think it could be used on Philippine 220?  I wish I could be of more help.

Best always,
Harry.


From: Lourdes Losanes

Subject: WIRIING A FOREIGN MADE 220V WALL OVEN

Hi Harry – My wife and I are building our retirement home in Iloilo near Lambunao. We are trying to hook up a wall oven unit we had shipped here from Canada. Do you know if this is possible. I read your article re-posted on myphilippinelife.com about the Philippine wiring system, our filipino electrician hasn’t had much luck for all his efforts. I am wondering if it is an issue of direct current versus alternating current. We tried to connect the black and red wires to the hot cable and the white to the zero volt return cable with ground but with no good results. Desperate for suggestions. Can you recommend an electrician we could hire?
Thanks, Brian Seyler


Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: trevor on January 17, 2012, 09:52:56 AM
From my experience with American wall ovens and ranges. 220 volts is used for the oven heating elements. The timers, clock and lights use 110 volts. 110 volts is supplied from one leg of the 220V. and the neutral leg.
Here in the Ph. where i live they use the two wire 220 volts wiring. There is no way to get the110 volts for the controls and lights. It will not work.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Metz on January 17, 2012, 11:14:59 AM
I have to get 100amp service to my workshop.  The neighbors will be so thrilled when I use the CNC plasma and the 4hp air compressor.  With both machhines on I will be drawing 8kw+  ;D
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on February 24, 2013, 11:53:05 PM
Hello Harry,

    In the vast majority of the Philippines you will not find the American style electricity with 2 "lower voltage" hot wires, although I have heard some of the systems the Americans installed near Subic & Clark are this way.  In all the rest of the country you will find only one hot wire at 220 volts and one ground referenced neutral at 0 volts to complete the circuit.  Since we never want to put a fuse of breaker in the neutral or common wire and you only have one hot wire, single pole breakers are all you want.

    If you want an American style system for the whole house in the PI, you will have to install a 220/220 isolation transformer with center tapped secondary sized to power the whole house.  If you only want to power a single 120 volt circuit or tool, you can use a 220.120 volt transformer sized to power the circuit or tool.

Best always,
Harry.


From: harry snell
To: harry80020@yahoo.com
Sent: Saturday, February 23, 2013 5:41 PM

Hello Harry,

First  let me  thank  you  for   your work on  the site  concerning  the electric service on  the house you were building in Phils.   You  obviously spent much time and  thought in doing it.

My wife and son and I are planning a move to Palawan before too long.  I  spent  most of my working  life here in  the US in the  construction  trades   so I  am quite adept and  up  on most stuff.  I  worked as a commercial and residential electricia  so  I am  quite interested to see  the manner  in  which home electrical services are installed.   I  have hopes of bringing  my power tools with me.  Of course some are 115v  so I was curious to see if I  would be able to create a neutral in a service panel as Im  quite sure none come into a house from  the transformers.  I never saw a 220v single wire (hot) system such as  you show in  your  pics. Looking at your  pics I see you  have created a neutral and you are grounded   through  the house rebar......I feel  that is more than   adequate.  I  had planned on bringing  drive-in  ground rods  but  the rebar system seems fine..  What I  dont understand is  your  use of  the single pole breakers......you  have no lower voltage circuits 110-120v   correct?   All are high 220-240 right?   well.....now  that I  think about  it,   since all you  have is high  voltage no reason  why  you  would need 2 pole breakers   since  the hot is all one leg..... interesting.....of  course us guys who  spent decades working in  the US with the few differing types of services here form a mindblock   when something different comes along.....:) I  dont know which type of service will be avail on Palawan   ,   hoping  it will be two lower voltage hots  rather  than  the one high  so  I  can create 115v for tools etc.   At  this stage of my  life I dont  want to  think about buying all new tools :).......I  could rig  up a transformer  but   they are really a waste of electricity turning much  of it to  heat by-product.

At some point  I  would  think   that  the power companies over  there would start making neutrals available  thus selling 115v   as it  is much more profitable   for  them   ie;   an  appliance running  on 230v uses 1/2 the amount  of electricity as a 115v one does.

Good luck  with  your project  and  thanks again  for  the site
                                                                                                                                                       Harry Snell

Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am on February 25, 2013, 12:07:03 AM
Lived here going on 15 years now and over the years, I've just about fried all of our 110V stuff we brought over from the U.S.! So now, it's 220V all the way, we don't use any of our voltage regulars anymore! Luckily most of the appliances and electronics sold here in the Philippines have now built-in voltage regulators or 110V to 240V cord adapters, except for most electric hand tools, which I no longer have - I fried them all! I haven't yet fried anything lately, because we don't buy anything that's 110V anymore! ;D
BTW, all of our 110V outlets no longer works, because the ground somehow shorted out somewhere! Don't use them anymore though! Just will have to put back the 110V sockets back to 220V. It's just much easier to adapt with the RP's 220V!
Went to Hong Kong last year, their 220V wall sockets have a different 3 pronged configuration and I had to buy an adapter just for our handheld hair dryer! ??? :o >:(
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on February 25, 2013, 12:12:29 AM
Dear Dennis,

    Yes, I am in the US, I live in the Denver area.  My wife is from a small town about 25 miles south of Cebu City.  We have been thinking about moving there, I'm retired & Madel is getting close.  It is nice to meet you & I am glad I could help.

Best always,
Harry.


From: Dennis Busch
To: Harry Morgan <harry80020@yahoo.com>
Sent: Thursday, February 14, 2013 7:13 PM
Subject: Re: PI house wiring

Thanks again Harry,

Went to Home Depot and surprised how inexpensive this stuff is.  Can do this for lest than 50, I assumed 100+.

Once again thanks!

Your responses sound like you're in the States?  Do you, or did you, live in the PI?  I lived there back in the 80s with the Air Force, will probably end up retiring there.  Unfortunately won't be another 10 yrs at least.

Dennis


    From: Harry Morgan <harry80020@yahoo.com>
    To: Dennis Busch
    Sent: Tuesday, February 12, 2013 9:06 AM
    Subject: Re: PI house wiring

    Dennis,

        You can buy a small 4 or 6 circuit breaker box here in the States and ship it over.  All you have to do is install a jumper wire to tie the two hot busses together.  But your major problem is you still need to split the circuits you have now.

    Best always,
    Harry.


    From: Dennis Busch
    To: "harry80020@yahoo com" <harry80020@yahoo.com>
    Sent: Monday, February 11, 2013 10:39 AM
    Subject: Re: PI house wiring

    Hi Harry,
    Thanks for the quick response.
    Yes, sorry I forgot the pic and have now attached it. Don't recall which fuse ran lights vs outlets. My hope was to build something here in the US I could ship over and easily just hang and connect those two wires to. BUT know nothing is easy in the PI, especially in E. Samar.
    Thanks again!
    Dennis
   

    From: Harry Morgan <harry80020@yahoo.com>;
    To: Dennis Busch
    Subject: Re: PI house wiring
    Sent: Mon, Feb 11, 2013 4:20:15 PM

    Hi Dennis,

        Your pic didn't make it, so am guessing.  Nothing wrong with a fuse box, providing they are wired correctly & have enough fuses.  A lot of the ones I've looked at there are 2 fuse units with the hot black wire run through one fuse & the neutral white wire run through the other fuse.  Wrong, never run the neutral through a fuse or breaker, only the hot wire is protected.  And a 30 amp circuit on 220 is a lot more power than you want for lights & regular receptacles.  If you are blowing a 30 amp fuse, it's better to install more 15 amp circuits to lower the load on each circuit.  Also light switches should always be in the hot wire, never the neutral.

        In general, we use 14 gauge wire on 15 amp circuits, 12 gauge on 20 amp circuits, 10 gauge on 30 amp circuits.  There is no standard size service from the pole to the meter, it depends on the load/size of the house.  In the USA the minimum is 60 amps, which would require 4 gauge wire.  In the PI a lot of the time they don't pay attention to the rules, or maybe don't understand, you never know what you will find there.  The residential power in the PI is one phase.  We also only have one phase to our homes here in the USA, although we center tap the single phase so we can have 110/220.  3 phase power is usually only in industrial & large buildings.

    Best always,
    Harry.


    From: Dennis Busch
    To: "harry80020@yahoo.com" <harry80020@yahoo.com>
    Sent: Sunday, February 10, 2013 8:41 PM
    Subject: PI house wiring

    Hello Harry,
    Saw your posts on a couple websites about PI wiring and have a couple questions that hopefully you'll kindly entertain.

    My mother-in-law's house only has a fuse box with one white and one black wire coming in.  I've attached a pic.  One side is light switches, the other is wall outlets per my experience there.

    We want to replace this little fuse box with a real breaker panel so we can use a small window A/C unit without blowing fuses.  One trip I put in proper light switches and outlets, which gave them the ability to plug more things in at once so it blows fuses sometimes.  The original fuses are 30 amp, no idea if that's the proper size or means anything.

    Is there a standard size service being fed into PI homes?  Do you know how many amps/phases it is?  Also do you have any idea what the wire gauge is from the pole to the meter?

    I should've brought my multimeter with me, will be sure to next trip.

    Thanks for your help!

    Dennis




Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Frosty on February 25, 2013, 11:24:47 AM
Hi
Thanks Harry for everything that you have posted. It is great help to all of us that are headed to the P.I.'s and building homes.
I would like to add a few things that I come across with the 110V or 220V. My sister in law and her husband had their house wired for both 110 and 220 (more money).They shipped over from the states all new appliances to put in the new house (more money).. Now after 15 years of brown outs most of the appliances have been picked up by the recycle truck and the 110V system goes unused (wasted money). With the heat that was generated when the transformer was in use you could cook on it, or( heat your house, good for Denver but not the P.I.) (more money for AC).
I don't see any advantage to 110V system in a 220V country.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: richardsinger on February 25, 2013, 11:48:13 PM
Harry, all the circuit breaker panels I have seen here in Philippines have breakers on both live and neutral. Since there is often a significant line resistance (on both live and neutral) and therefore the possibility of a standing voltage on the house neutral line, a circuit breaker will protect against over-current on the neutral in the event of a short to ground (e.g. neutral wire crunched against a rebar or somebody drilling a wall and shorting a neutral wire against a rebar).

Many installations use individual CB's for live and neutral, but I think a double pole CB is better since it will completely isolate the appliance in the event of a live or neutral CB trip. Of course if the system has a ground connection, that should never have any switch or breaker in line.

Richard
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on March 08, 2013, 09:45:06 PM
Danny,

    Either one is fine, I used plastic because my father-in-law's house is near the sea, the salt air will eventually rust metal boxes.

Best always,
Harry.

From: Daniel Shindle
To: harry80020@yahoo.com
Sent: Thursday, March 7, 2013 7:28 PM
Subject: Electrical question

Hi Harry,

    I enjoyed your thread on electrical wiring in the Philippines.  We are in the planning stages of building a home in Laguna.  Since I have a lot of electrical supplies in stock, left over from previous jobs and projects,I am planning to send rolls of solid 14g and 12g and a panel box.  I am also going to send my grounded duplex outlets and switches.  My question is, what type of outlet and switch boxes are generally used?  I prefer the plastic.  But what I had noticed in most of the homes in the provinces is the metal boxes.

thanks,
Danny
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on June 05, 2013, 09:47:50 PM
Hi Phil,

    The house I wired in the Philippines was my father in law's, I live in Colorado.  At that time the in laws had a few 120 volt appliances that had been sent to them from the USA.  They used several of the little individual plug in transformers of different sizes and also had a larger 1 kilo watt trans transformer for the microwave.  About all of the original 120 volt things have quit working and have been replaced by 220 volt items bought there.

    There is no reason you can't install your own step-down transformer & sub panel for your American appliances & tools.  The transformer will need to be a 220 volt primary, doesn't matter if it's center tapped or not.  The secondary needs to be 220 volts WITH center tap or just a 120 volt secondary, depending on how you want to wire it.  If you use the center tapped secondary, you absolutely need an American style 220/110 sub panel (or 2 Philippine style panels).  The American style panel can also be altered to work on the Philippine 220 system, just jumper the 2 busses together & use single pole breakers.   Best to size the transformer to about 125% of the total load for the appliances/tools that would under normal/usual conditions be on at any one time.  A Sola transformer holds the secondary steadier when the primary voltage varies.  I don't know how much, or if, the voltage there varies, in Sibonga it seemed to be more a case of either on or off.

   Yes, installing a system like this can be expensive, weather or not it is a good value would depend on a lot of things.  I think my father-in-law's roof might leak a little to much for insulation in the ceiling.  But a plastic vapor under concrete seems like a wonderful idea, as does a white or silver roof.

Best always,
Harry..

From: Philip Dronen
To: "harry80020@yahoo.com" <harry80020@yahoo.com>
Sent: Tuesday, June 4, 2013 6:09 PM
Subject: electrical
Harry-
      I have been reading your notes regarding construction of your home with great interest.  It has been very helpful in planning our project in Leyte to begin next year.  No where is there any discussion of step down issues to run american appliances.  I would like to run several circuits dedicated with ground fault adapters at end of each line.  If possible would like to run to the kitchen, bathrooms and perhaps to outside for use of power tools.  None of these will require any more than 3,500 watt requirements and it seems a sub panel (step up step down sole unit) would meet our needs without the moving of portable inverters as required. Is this something that you had considered?  and if so what do you think would make the most sence?  The area will be a single drop line.  I have found an item such as this in us however cost is over 1,000 usd and is for 10,000 watts.  On another note why did you not use insulation in your roofing? Our architechual plans call for it as well as plastic under the slab mostly to prevent insect/termite issues.  If you could be so kind as to reply to the above I would appreciate your help.  Most Sincerely;Phil Dronen   
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on June 06, 2013, 09:24:17 PM
Dear Phil,

    I apologize for forgetting to address the GFCI issue in my first letter.  It is a wonderful idea, but I don't know it 110 volt GFCI's will work on 220?  I had wondered about this issue when I was getting ready to wire my father-in-law's house and had actually written the GFCI manufacturer for advice, but never received a reply.  I was afraid at least the test function the GFCI would be damaged, among other concerns.  You might check with an electrician or supply house there to see if there is a local product to use.  There is no problem with the standard American single pole breakers, they work equally well on both 110 & 220.

Best always,
Harry.

From: Philip Dronen
To: Harry Morgan <harry80020@yahoo.com>
Sent: Wednesday, June 5, 2013 5:42 PM
Subject: Re: electrical
Thank-you so much for your help. I will do the research regarding the step down transformer availability here. The good news is my wife has a relative that is an engineer (electrical) so will meet with her to discuss further.  Already on the site is a new 100 amp square d box and multiple breakers. I assume this will work as a sub panel and am returning to us in October for couple of weeks can purchase additional single pole breakers.  I am primarily concerned with the gfi in bathrooms and kitchen for safety and have multiple power tools here that should never stop working.  As i am sure you can tell not an electrician but want a working knowledge of this prior to installation.  It wood seem that 220 is actually more cost effective than 120. The roofing specs call for long span with steel trusses so I would expect it to be water tight. Due perhaps to the language barrier it has been difficult to explain my needs and your e mail will go a long way to that end.  Thanks again. Phil
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: JoeLP on June 21, 2013, 09:06:03 PM
I do have a question about wiring in the phils.  When there I notice that the "power boxes" are similar to our boxes here.  The one my friend Maki has has breakers that look very similar to ours also.  So here's my question.....can you use a 110 breaker on a box there and run a circuit of 110 wire?  Or do the boxes there not permit for that?  I remember my dad always putting the boxes together on houses he build when I was growing up and would spend a day with him at his company.  He could use both 110 and 220 breakers(fuses earlier in my childhood) on the same "spine" of the power box.  If such is available there, I can see myself running a couple circuits in the house with maybe a different color plug or something to keep them "separated" in appearance from the normal 220.

Thanks for any help.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Gray Wolf on June 22, 2013, 05:28:21 AM
I do have a question about wiring in the phils.  When there I notice that the "power boxes" are similar to our boxes here.  The one my friend Maki has has breakers that look very similar to ours also.  So here's my question.....can you use a 110 breaker on a box there and run a circuit of 110 wire?  Or do the boxes there not permit for that?  I remember my dad always putting the boxes together on houses he build when I was growing up and would spend a day with him at his company.  He could use both 110 and 220 breakers(fuses earlier in my childhood) on the same "spine" of the power box.  If such is available there, I can see myself running a couple circuits in the house with maybe a different color plug or something to keep them "separated" in appearance from the normal 220.

Thanks for any help.

The electric grid in the Philippines is strictly 220
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Lee2 on June 22, 2013, 08:07:02 AM
But some electric providers such as Veco will install a 110 transformer on a pole in front of a home so a person can have both or just 110 if they are willing to pay extra for it. A 110 house would probably not be feasible in the Philippines but a few 110 outlets might if a person does not make a mistake and plug in a 110 device into a 220 socket, I know because I plugged in a rechargeable drill charger and poof it went and I knew much better than to do that but while working around the condo I forgot for a second and it was too late.

I use 110 extension cords and never have a problem but if the box is not rated for 220 for some reason then it would probably not be good to install one. I looked up some Square D panels at Home Depot and they says 110 and 240 so it would work, see below.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Square-D-by-Schneider-Electric-Homeline-125-Amp-12-Space-12-Circuit-Indoor-Main-Lugs-Load-Center-with-Cover-HOM12L125C/202495819#.UcTpOPlJNl4   (http://www.homedepot.com/p/Square-D-by-Schneider-Electric-Homeline-125-Amp-12-Space-12-Circuit-Indoor-Main-Lugs-Load-Center-with-Cover-HOM12L125C/202495819#.UcTpOPlJNl4)
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Square-D-by-Schneider-Electric-Homeline-200-Amp-30-Space-40-Circuit-Main-Breaker-Indoor-Service-Upgrade-Load-Center-Removable-End-Walls-Value-Pack-HOM3040M200EPVP/202495854#.UcTqWflJNl4   (http://www.homedepot.com/p/Square-D-by-Schneider-Electric-Homeline-200-Amp-30-Space-40-Circuit-Main-Breaker-Indoor-Service-Upgrade-Load-Center-Removable-End-Walls-Value-Pack-HOM3040M200EPVP/202495854#.UcTqWflJNl4)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: hitekcountry on June 23, 2013, 01:15:21 AM
Not 100% sure what your question is. If you’re trying to create a 110 circuit by removing the existing breaker in a 220 panel and replacing it with what you call a 110 breaker, the answer is no that won’t work. The breaker is simply a switch and what voltage is on the bus that the breaker is plugged into is the voltage that will come out the other side of the breaker. 220v in 220v out.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on August 05, 2013, 10:41:18 PM
Thanks to Gary Dadds

"What do you consider a neutral to be? Keeping it simple the neutral is just the
> supply companies ground. The supply company will be generating 3-phase the
> center will be connected to an earth rod going tens of metres into the ground.
> This grounding point is what is supplied to you as the neutral wire. It may also
> be tied down to a ground rod in the local substation. Although the neutral is
> effectively a ground it is carrying all of the return current so can develop a
> small voltage. Because of this the neutral should not be connected to the metal
> case of any appliance. This is what the local clean earth from your ground rod
> is for."
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Metz on August 30, 2013, 07:08:25 PM
I just wired up a new shop this month.  The specs here were 25kva transformer just for the building.  (Owner bought  it just for herself)

8ga from the meter to the shop
Every outlet separate breaker, 8ga wire.

The fuse box was a little more expensive than the standard American style bus bar but the breakers themselves were cheaper.

There was no ground before.  I ran new ground wire and tapped it into exposed rebar tied into the retaining wall behind the building.

Belkin surge protector power strip on the electronics and a voltage regulator.

I need about 60-70 amps to power everything right now.

Have a couple die stamping machines on order that are 2hp single phase each.

So far so good
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: graham on September 11, 2013, 12:59:28 PM
Metz,

Pardon my ignorance as I'm no electrician. But being as the rebar is buried in concrete
is concrete a conductor? To my way of thinking it would not provide a substantial ground.

Harry???????
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: coleman2347 on September 11, 2013, 01:20:00 PM
Graham, in another post it was mentioned you live in the south...can you post whats really happening down there?

This link might help you understand the stuff about grounding...hope it helps...Lee

http://www.ehow.com/about_5494279_electricity-go-ground.html (http://www.ehow.com/about_5494279_electricity-go-ground.html)
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: wildbill on September 12, 2013, 07:09:58 AM
Keep this in mind  If you live way out in the Province most have lots of Brown outs always you will need a Generator I love the province but I hate the brown outs we been having them like every day some time all day long 8 to 10 hours I want to sell and move back to Dasma cavite.:(
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: graham on September 12, 2013, 10:14:58 AM
Lee,

Nothing much happening where I live, which is near the top of Mindanao.
CDO is generally a quiet place to live. I have never felt threatened ever in
the 6 years I've lived here.
This link should tell you why the upsurge at this time.

http://ph.news.yahoo.com/muslim-rebel-attack-shuts-down-philippine-city-001638952.html (http://ph.news.yahoo.com/muslim-rebel-attack-shuts-down-philippine-city-001638952.html)

I do have a working knowledge of electricity, and thanks for the info you supplied.
I have a 3 wire grounded system with a 3 metre grounding rod thru the sand
down into moisture supplied by the ocean.
My comment was that I thought if rebar is imbedded and completely enclosed in
the concrete, is concrete a conductor??

I seriously doubt it. While working in PNG I overhauled a Dorman Diesel Genset. I disconnected
the o'head power lines to the compound and attached a welding/genset in their place while I did the
necessary repairs. After completion I re-attached the o'head wires from the main gen. I accidentally
reversed the wiring and it had a 40amp draw. This "was" 1965, so I have learnt lot's more since then LOL. 

I went into the kitchen area and while kneeling received a very slight tingle thru the concrete floor
I checked the earth rod and the ground around it was bubbling. Reversed the wires and had no more trouble.

Graham   
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: graham on September 12, 2013, 10:24:55 AM
WB,

We have blackouts here too due to the non-servicing of the power plants.
The demand far exceeds the supply. Fortunately I must have my house
close to "someone important". Very rarely does my area suffer power outage.
It does go when we have very high winds or torrential rain, but it is quickly
restored in most cases. Thankfully.

A mate of mine in Isabella, up the top of Luzon had to run his genset for 35 days
continuous, after Sendong. He experiences many blackouts and built himself an industrial genset.

Graham
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: hitekcountry on September 12, 2013, 01:00:59 PM
@Graham   “ To my way of thinking it would not provide a substantial ground.”

NEC (National Electrical Code), code used throughout the US and many other countries, lists ufer grounding system (rebar incased in concrete) as one of the accepted methods to connect to ground. The requirements are that the grounding rebar must be 20ft (6.0m) min. in length, and there cannot be an insulating membrane between the concrete and the ground. NEC 250.52(a)

“ if rebar is imbedded and completely enclosed in the concrete, is concrete a conductor??”

Is concrete a conductor? Well not a very good conductor but then neither is wood but lightning will strike a tree as part of its path to ground, but of course a tree is full of moisture. Well guess what, concrete has moisture in it also, even if it was poured decades ago. It takes a very sensitive meter to measure it but it’s there.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: graham on September 13, 2013, 12:03:39 PM
@Graham   “ To my way of thinking it would not provide a substantial ground.”

NEC (National Electrical Code), code used throughout the US and many other countries, lists ufer grounding system (rebar incased in concrete) as one of the accepted methods to connect to ground. The requirements are that the grounding rebar must be 20ft (6.0m) min. in length, and there cannot be an insulating membrane between the concrete and the ground. NEC 250.52(a)

“ if rebar is imbedded and completely enclosed in the concrete, is concrete a conductor??”

Is concrete a conductor? Well not a very good conductor but then neither is wood but lightning will strike a tree as part of its path to ground, but of course a tree is full of moisture. Well guess what, concrete has moisture in it also, even if it was poured decades ago. It takes a very sensitive meter to measure it but it’s there.

Well, I would have sworn on a stack of bibles it wouldn't be a conductor.
"Never be too sure of anything" should be my new motto LOL

Graham.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: hitekcountry on September 13, 2013, 01:36:32 PM



To be honest my reaction when I first heard the idea of using the rebar incased within concrete as a ground just didn’t sit right somehow. Also I won’t use the plumbing in a building for ground. I’ve seen too many times where someone has repaired/replaced the buried section of the metal plumbing with PVC pipe not knowing that they just destroyed the grounding system for the building.

I’ll stick with the grounding rods, I believe in having a good ground.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Killjoygreg on September 13, 2013, 06:00:59 PM
In the last 12 months in some parts of Australia is has become compulsory to earth ie ground the rio in the concrete slab of new dwellings. And a test point must be provided at the other end of the slab to test continuity. This however would never be regarded as a main earthing point. It must be soldered to the main earthing wire. An earthing stake is the main earthing point.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on September 22, 2013, 01:41:42 AM
Dear Harry,

Yes, it is a decent conductor and one of choices for the 2 required ground references by the NEC: buried copper plate, copper rod in earth, cold water pipe in earth, and "steel re-bar in concrete foundation.

Best always,
the other Harry.


Metz,

Pardon my ignorance as I'm no electrician. But being as the rebar is buried in concrete
is concrete a conductor? To my way of thinking it would not provide a substantial ground.

Harry???????
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on September 22, 2013, 02:07:03 AM
Dear Joel,

    Yes, you can use an American 120 volt breaker & American 120 volt wire on Philippine 220 volt systems.  American style 220 volt breakers are actually two 120 volt breakers tied together so they both open in case of an overload or short circuit, American breakers are rated at 300 volts.  Even light duty American lamp cord (wire for plug) is rated at 300 volts, they use the same cord in the PI for 220.  You will have to check the writing on your "romex" house wire for the voltage rating for the insulation, but I imagine it will be 600 volts.  Any breaker has to be the correct style & brand to fit  the panel it's installed in and has to be the correct ampere rating for the circuit: 15 amps, 20 amps, etc.   And any wire installed on either 120 or 220 must be large enough to carry the amp rating of the breaker or fuse.

Best always,
Harry.
 

I do have a question about wiring in the phils.  When there I notice that the "power boxes" are similar to our boxes here.  The one my friend Maki has has breakers that look very similar to ours also.  So here's my question.....can you use a 110 breaker on a box there and run a circuit of 110 wire?  Or do the boxes there not permit for that?  I remember my dad always putting the boxes together on houses he build when I was growing up and would spend a day with him at his company.  He could use both 110 and 220 breakers(fuses earlier in my childhood) on the same "spine" of the power box.  If such is available there, I can see myself running a couple circuits in the house with maybe a different color plug or something to keep them "separated" in appearance from the normal 220.

Thanks for any help,
Joel P.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: graham on September 23, 2013, 10:47:22 AM



To be honest my reaction when I first heard the idea of using the rebar incased within concrete as a ground just didn’t sit right somehow. Also I won’t use the plumbing in a building for ground. I’ve seen too many times where someone has repaired/replaced the buried section of the metal plumbing with PVC pipe not knowing that they just destroyed the grounding system for the building.

I’ll stick with the grounding rods, I believe in having a good ground.

In Australia it is now illegal to use the galvanised/copper water pipes for grounding. Too many plumbers were getting electrocuted due to faulty wiring.

Graham
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on October 07, 2013, 02:24:19 AM
re: In Australia it is now illegal to use the galvanised/copper water pipes for grounding. Too many plumbers were getting electrocuted due to faulty wiring.

Graham

Hi Graham,

    It's best to install a bypass conductor around the water meter.  If the water meter hasn't been installed yet or is taken out for service/repair, the water pipes can become energized.  Plumbers here won't touch the water pipes if they don't see the a water meter or jumper in place.  Plumbers never trust electricians.

Best always,
Harry.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on October 10, 2013, 10:45:18 PM
Thanks for a heads up tip from VS:


Harry,
I have read your article about the above subject.  I have to dispute your findings since your description is not accurate 100% in the way electricity is wired and distributed!  Your observations may be true in that place where you are (Cebu)?  In the Metro-Manila area is quite different from what you observed.

I am an EE from Manila, and our house and in fact all houses in Metro-Manila, the power utility company are providing a minimum of two (2) wires, Single phase, known as or labeled as L1&L2, similar to the U.S. These wires are both "Hot", may carry anywhere from 220 - 240 Volts between them, depending on the proximity to the main distribution transformer.   The 3rd Neutral wire as known in U.S. is an option that will cost extra for the home owners. The 4th Ground wire if needed for user safety were derived locally from rod driven deep into the ground..

Consumers who have 110 Volts appliances but cannot afford to buy step-down transformers, nor pay the extra cost and charges associated with an "official" 220/110 V service from the utility company, most of the time are resorting to just creating their own 110V system by utilizing the ground and one leg of the 220V power coming from the post.  Although this is not a safe practice nor advisable for the 110 appliance proper operations due to unstable /varying power source! Yet most were doing this approach due to their economic conditions!

VS.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Killjoygreg on October 12, 2013, 03:08:21 PM
I brought a meter with me this trip to test my power. We are on a fairly new subdivision just out of Bacolod City.. We are quite close to the pole transformer and the supply voltage is 238V. It is a two wire system. One active wire and one wire at ground potential. This must be grounded somewhere at the transformer as there is no sign of any grounding in my breaker box or at my meter. Two pole circuit breakers are used. I guess this is because the two pin plugs they use can be and are inserted either way which switches the active and neutral supplies depending how it's plugged in.
 I am also renting a new unit in Quezon City and observed that the same system seemed to be used there, although I did not test this with a meter.
Just before we returned to Australia in February there was a burnt hole in the breaker box of the house which is located inside. Smoke was coming out and smoke stains evident on the wall. I had to go to the meter and break it open to pull the supply fuse. The so called builder cut on costs by not water proofing  the firewalls, just two coats of paint. In heavy rain these hollow block and render they use to build in the Philippines just soak the water up and it comes through to the inside. The breaker box was recessed and just started leaking current. When we arrived back here two weeks ago the problem was solved by making the breaker box surface mounted letting the moisture drip pass.
Of course have had the walls water proofed  at my expense and repainted. Also had the roof redone just in case.
If you are going to build over here do be extra watchful.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am on October 12, 2013, 10:14:06 PM
It looks pretty similar to our house build, except for I never saw the grounding rods into the ground, but we do have a ground wire at the post and we do have 3 pronged wall outlets inside the house!   
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: wildbill on October 23, 2013, 09:34:55 PM
I wonder if I drive in the ground a peace of rebar will that be good for grounding my washing machine even touching the water shocks the hel out of us.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Killjoygreg on October 24, 2013, 01:22:17 AM
A good article. That bloke is  very particular.  I'm a bit blasé  about it all and as I wasn't present when the electrical was done will just take it as it is Too late to run earth wires around now. Don't know what they use for earth stakes here but you would also need to get an  earth wire to the outlet you are using for your washing machine. If it is in conduit buried in your wall  it would be difficult.
Ask your  friendly local electrician.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Metz on November 01, 2013, 08:09:43 AM
I grounded my shop pretty easily. They sell this vinyl trim for electrical wire covering.  We replaced the outlets with ones we brought from the US, ran the ground wire and tied into new rod outside and to exposed rebar on the retaining wall.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: wildbill on November 01, 2013, 12:01:57 PM
Thanks I was just wondering if I could instead of using a copper ground just use rebar.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Frosty on November 03, 2013, 11:38:36 PM
The main reason for using copper ground rod is to the ability of copper to resist corrosion and the low cost of the rod. Most ground rods are steel rods covered in copper, the reason for this is because it's real tough to drive an 8 foot copper rod into the ground with out it bending. You can use re-bar or a piece of pipe, the problem is the corrosion, the re-bar or pipe will only last 10 to 15 years if you are lucky and a lot of that depends on the soil condition, copper should last about 40 plus years.
Re-bar is cheap and will work. But the main reason for me to never cut corners and save a few $ is because the wife and kids will need to deal with this if I don't do it right the first time, after I'm gone.

Concrete is not a good conductor of electricity unless the Re-bar is in contact with earth it might not work as a ground. If you don't have a way to test for continuity between the re-bar and the ground you might be better off just using a ground rod
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: wildbill on November 06, 2013, 08:59:58 PM
thanks frosty will do it tired of being shocked washing the clothes.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on May 16, 2014, 09:27:02 PM

Posted by: rayhigh
« on: May 15, 2014, 01:07:50 PM »

 
Hey all,

We are going to start putting up a mixed commercial/residential structure in Eastern Samar later this year.

Does anyone know if I can use electrical outlets purchased in the USA and use them on a 220v system? The quality of the ones I can buy in the states seems better, if they will work on 220 without problems.

Thanks



American style 110 volt receptacles will work fine on Philippine 220 so long as you don't exceed the ampere rating of the receptacle, they're what the Philippinos use.  If you want top quality receptacles, see if you can find "hospital grade", but they are expensive.  In the USA plugs & receptacles have different socket configurations for the different voltage & ampere ratings of the circuit.  Even the cheapest 110 volt equipment in the USA has to be safe up to 300 volts, check the voltage rating on your light duty lamp cords, it's written on the insulation. 
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on December 06, 2014, 12:50:08 AM
Hi Mr Harry

I appreciate your insight on electricity and am current building a home in Angeles City MetroGate.

The home is about 80% complete and the builder has recommended we have dual outlets with 110 and 220.

In your opinion, is this a good practice?  Is it more efficient to run appliances on 110 vs 220?

My wife (a Filipina) will be visiting Jan 2015 to stock-up on appliances, should she buy 110 or 220?

Thank you for your reply
Humberto (Bert) Ruiz


 


Dear Humberto,

    110 volt appliances and 220 volt appliances both have the same efficiency.  The only thing that is different is you can use smaller wire for 220 volts.  The only problem with having dual voltage in the Philippines is that they use the same receptacle for both voltages, so it is easy to plug something into the wrong voltage.

Best always,

Harry.


Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: cvgtpc1 on December 06, 2014, 01:46:38 AM
The only problem with having dual voltage in the Philippines is that they use the same receptacle for both voltages, so it is easy to plug something into the wrong voltage.

I definitely agree with that.  Our place in AC had dual voltage with the same outlet type and an in-law blew a US 110v TV plugging it into the wrong outlet.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: trevor on December 06, 2014, 03:06:33 AM
Here in the province of North Luzon they have the two wire system. They have a ground wire at the utility pole. This ground wire is tied to the bare wire coming into the residence. When we built our house one year ago I had the electrician add one ground rod at the other utility pole at the front of our property where the meter is located. This ground is tied to the supply power ground (bare) wire. The wire is then piped underground to our house about 40 meters from that pole. We add another ground rod at the side of the house where the entrance junction box is located. This extra ground wire is added to the main breaker box on a separate buss bar. All the outlets are of the universal three wire system. All outlets are tied to ground on the extra ground buss in the main breaker box. So far we have no problem with tingling when we hold the fridge or range standing with bare feet on the tile floor.
Also we purchased our own transformer from the utility company. 25 KVA capacity. Utility company should supply the proper service but as we all know this is the Ph. Tried to get the TV cable company to give us service but they want us to purchase the wire coming to our house. Their wiring is not yet up to our area. Is about 1/2 a mile further down the road. I am sure if we went for that then they would later tap off the wire we supply to feed their other customers. Tried to talk to their boss but the guy does not want to talk to me. So far we are using the satellite dish.

Trevor.








Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: David690 on June 29, 2016, 02:52:46 AM
Hi Harry

The last post in this thread is very old.  Just wondering if you are still active on the forum, as I would like to discus the electrical wiring on the house I am building.

Thanks,
David
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Lee2 on June 29, 2016, 04:13:37 AM
Hi Harry

The last post in this thread is very old.  Just wondering if you are still active on the forum, as I would like to discus the electrical wiring on the house I am building.

Thanks,
David
Hi David, welcome to the forum. I sent Harry a private message asking him to check back in to reply to your post, I have not seen him around for a while so I hope he comes back on and replies to you.
Lee
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: David690 on July 01, 2016, 03:49:22 PM
Hi David, welcome to the forum. I sent Harry a private message asking him to check back in to reply to your post, I have not seen him around for a while so I hope he comes back on and replies to you.
Lee

Thanks Lee
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: David690 on July 11, 2016, 04:52:24 AM
Hi Lee

I'm guessing that you haven't heard anything from Harry.

Thanks,
David
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Lee2 on July 11, 2016, 05:50:46 AM
Hi Lee

I'm guessing that you haven't heard anything from Harry.

Thanks,
David
Yes, sadly no reply. Some people use a special email address for forums, rather than their main email address, thus they never get the message or rarely look at that email address, maybe he will look at it one of these days. I was not on this forum for a while after the first software change happened, as I found that software very hard to use. I too use to disappear for many months when I was busy with other things, lets hope he is okay and that someday he will come back on.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Gray Wolf on July 11, 2016, 10:38:55 PM
Hi Lee

I'm guessing that you haven't heard anything from Harry.

Thanks,
David

David,

You might try contacting Harry at his email address:  hdtoken@msn.com
I'm not certain it's still valid as I haven't seen any activity from him for quite a while, either here on the forum or on the Yahoo Group. Hope he responds to you personally.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: David690 on July 12, 2016, 12:56:15 AM
There appears to me to be some misinformation being given or assumed about the Philippine electrical standards.  It might help to discuss the two primary residential electrical systems worldwide -- The US system, and virtually everybody else, which we will call the European system.  The Philippine system is generally half an American system – without the grounding required for 110 volt outlets.

US SYSTM
The US system provides 220 volt electrical service to every residential house.  The electrical feed consists of two hot feed wires.  Each feed wire is 110 volts measured to ground.  But the two feed wires are 180 degrees out of phase with each other.  Across the two feed wires, you get 220 volts because the wires are opposite polarity.  That makes the US residential system a 110 volt, two-phase system. 

These two hot feed wires connect to two separate hot busses in the circuit breaker box.  There is a third neutral bus for the neutral and ground wires.  The US circuit breaker box is always grounded.  The US circuit breaker box is designed so that a 110 volt circuit connects to a single circuit breaker, while a 220 volt circuit connects through two circuit breakers.  The US breaker box design connects adjacent circuit breakers to a separate hot bus, which allows the 220 volt circuit breaker pair to be connected as a double-pole – that is, they can be thrown open or closed simultaneously.      

Few US household appliances actually use 220 volts.  However central air conditioning compressor motors, and shop tools with electrical motors often do use 220 volts.  Other appliances that plug into a 220 volt receptacle, such as an electric oven or an automatic clothes dryer, may actually just run two separate 110 volt circuits within the appliance. 

The US system literally uses the ground as part of the electrical circuit.  You don\'t feel it, but a ground connection is essential to the US electrical system -- you cannot get 110 volts without connecting to ground.  The neutral buss, and the circuit breaker box itself, are always connected to ground using a heavy copper wire attached to a copper rod driven at least 18 inches into the soil.  

US wiring inside the house consist of three wires – a hot wire through the circuit breaker, a neutral wire connected to the neutral buss, and a ground safety wire connected to the circuit breaker box.  If a metal conduit is used, it may substitute for third safety ground wire.  Both the US neutral wire, and the ground safety wires are connected to ground, but they serve different purposes.  The neutral wire completes the appliance circuit from the hot feed wire, thru the appliance circuit, and then to ground and back to the generator.  The safety ground wire, on the other hand, never connects to the hot feed wire except by accident.  Its purpose is to drain off any electrical leakage from the appliance to the exterior of the appliance that a human may touch.  The safety ground wire utilizes the third prong on a three prong receptacle, which prevents your electrocution should the appliance casing inadvertently become electrically hot through a short. 


EUROPEAN SYSTEM
The European system also provides 220 volt service to residences -- but through a single hot feed wire.  The single feed wire is 220 volts measured to ground.  If there is a second feed wire to a European house, it is a neutral wire – not hot unless an appliance is turned on.  Inside the “European” house, there may be two wires – one hot and one neutral.  But outside the house, the neutral may just go to ground, because most localities on the European system consider it too expensive to run a neutral wire all the way back to the generator when the ground will accomplish the same thing at no cost.  Europeans do not use 110 volt appliances, and you cannot get 110 volts out of the European system.  If you need 110 volts, you must use a transformer. 

PHILIPPINE SYSTEM
I can’t speak for all areas in the Philippines, but the localities I have been to use the American two-phase service – consisting of two hot 110 volt wires 180 degrees out of phase with each other.  Both these hot feed wires connect to the main generator. The circuit breaker box has no neutral buss and does not normally connect to ground.  That works in the Philippines because only 220 volt appliances are sold there. 

However, because the service is 110 volt two phase, two circuit breakers are necessary for every household circuit. The breaker box is designed so adjacent circuit breakers connect to separate busses.  Every circuit breaker must be part of a double-pole pair – to be thrown open or closed simultaneously.  However, it is very easy for the connector bar to fall off, and if only one circuit breaker is turned off, the appliance will still be hot to ground – possibly through your body – so always make sure to throw circuit breaker switches in pairs. 

There are always two hot wires to every electrical outlet.  Each side of the electrical outlet is hot.  There are no neutral wires, and a safety ground wire is not employed.  The circuit box itself may not be grounded.

EUROPEAN EXPATS bringing European appliance only face the consternation of having to plug into a US-style two blade outlet that normally is a 110 volt outlet.  The US-style three-prong plug is also only used in grounded 110 volt circuits in the US and the third prong is useless on a normal Philippine electrical circuit. Other than having to use a plug adapter, European appliances work just fine in the Philippines.  

AMERICAN EXPATS bringing 110 volt appliances into the Philippines must either use a 110 volt transformer, or modify the house circuit to tap into the 110 volt service.  It is all too easy to plug your 110 volt appliance into what looks to the American as a normal 110 volt outlet, but in the Philippines is a 220 volt outlet – with the consequence of a fried American appliance.  110 volt transformers are widely available in the Philippines, and relatively cheap. 

If you bring American 220 volt appliances, such as electric water heaters, air conditioners, ovens, or ranges, you have to be careful.  Many of these may plug into a 220 volt outlet in the US, but their internal wiring is only designed to use 110 volts.  Also, all 220 volt circuits in the US use a three-prong plug, with the third prong serving as neutral and safety ground.  Philippine 220 volt circuits are not grounded, and for that reason, your American 220 volt appliances may not work, and may be fried. 

MODYFYING THE FILIPINO HOUSE CIRCUIT.
All one has to do to get 110 volts out of the Filipino system is add in the missing pieces – a neutral buss in the circuit breaker box, ground the neutral buss physically to the earth with a thick wire connected to a copper rod driven at least 18 inches into the soil, remove one of the hot wires running to the selected outlet and replace it with neutral wire from the neutral bus – viola, you have 110 volt service.  If you are going to install three-prong plugs, then you should also run a separate bare wire from the neutral bus to the third prong receptacle (for the round pin on the plug.)

Note that every 220 volt circuit you convert yields two 110 volt outlets, as a 110 volt outlet only has one circuit breaker and one hot wire to it.

If you are smart, you will also want to replace all your flat blade 220 volt outlets with the round pin European outlet.  Then you never have to ever worry about inadvertently plugging your 110 volt appliance into a 220 volt outlet and frying the appliance.

I hope this clears up the confusion.

Hi Doctor M

Thank you for your post, but where I was clear before (at least I believed that I was), I am confused now.
My understanding of the 220v 2 wire supply in Philippines was as described by Harry, i.e. a live feed plus a neutral feed, with neutral being grounded inside your house.  That clearly runs contrary to your explanation.

Unfortunately, Harry has not been seen for quite a while, so I do not expect to see any response from him on this.
Anybody else on here with a clear understanding on the Philippines electric supply.

David
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: hitekcountry on July 12, 2016, 03:02:34 AM
From what I’ve seen there are two hot wires both are switched at the breaker/fuse box. There is no neutral feed and/or no ground wire from power pole to house. Also in trying to measure the voltage on each leg it appears as though the system floats to ground.

The two places where I was able to get a close look at the wiring were old houses and may not represent up to date installations.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: Lee2 on July 12, 2016, 03:34:33 AM
Our Cebu City condo only has a two wires system too.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: lost_in_samoa on July 12, 2016, 10:00:57 AM
That clearly runs contrary to your explanation

Harry schooled me back in the day when I was first setting up our solar system.  Harry if your out there I can't thank you enough.

So I will pass on the understanding he gave me.

The term "neutral" as it is used here in the RP is contrary to what other countries use.  If you meter out a neutral line here you will get voltage on it. 

So its just terminology that you need to adjust to.  Kinda like you cannot find "Velcro" any where.  But there is lots of "Magic Tape".

If you walk  your lines back to the power pole you will find a big oil transformer.  that transformer usually has 3 or 4 taps on it.  Usually two of those taps feed your house extension.  One of the other taps, usually not connected to anything, will be the center of the transformer winding between the taps that feed your house.  That center tap is 0 volts in respect to the Leg 1 and Leg 2 feeds to your house.

The main problem is that users are not given access to a center tap feed so you can't just go between L1 or L2 to a ground bond neutral.  Direct short to ground.  You will let the magic blue smoke out of all of the appliances, and start Divisoria on fire ..... again.

So what most people have is two wires 180 out of phase.  Between them you measure 240 vdc.  Keeping that in mind, every time you goof with electricity here you need to remember that even with the switch off one line is still hot.  Unless you installed Double pole single throw switches.

What we do is use a large auto transformer.  That lets me create a neutral, (still cant bond it to ground).  Using that neutral We can now power 120 devices off of either Neu -> L1 or Neu -> L2.


Hope that helps.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: trevor on July 12, 2016, 11:08:02 AM
Well apparently some of us home owners here have a different voltage supply set up. I can only speak for myself and what i have here in our home in North Luzon. We have the two wire system and 220 VAC. only. This consist of one bare wire and one insulated wire coming from the pole. The bare wire is also grounded at the pole on the street. We have no option to lower the voltage except by utilising a step down transformer. That is if we want to use 110 VAC in side our home to power 110 VAC appliances.
We have to work with what what the utility company supply.
What i did was added one extra ground wire by inserting a six foot grounded rod into the earth. Actually two six foot ground rods.
This grounded wire was added to a ground buss inside the main breaker box. I used all three pin outlets and the whole house is wired with the extra ground wire. With this set up i could use ground faults GFI. inside the kitchen and bathrooms.
Also no more tingling (mini shocks) when i touch the refrigerator or the range if i am barefooted, which is how i walk inside the house. Everyone else use fit flop inside the house.
When we were building the house the roofers who did the steel trusts complained about the welder not working because of the low supply voltage, voltage was from 180 to 200 VAC. So we purchased our own transformer from Novelco which they installed on the pole and we got a steady supply of 230VAC. Over here in the province one transformer supply many homes, resulting in a voltage drop.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: David690 on July 13, 2016, 03:24:09 AM
Well apparently some of us home owners here have a different voltage supply set up. I can only speak for myself and what i have here in our home in North Luzon. We have the two wire system and 220 VAC. only. This consist of one bare wire and one insulated wire coming from the pole. The bare wire is also grounded at the pole on the street. We have no option to lower the voltage except by utilising a step down transformer. That is if we want to use 110 VAC in side our home to power 110 VAC appliances.
We have to work with what what the utility company supply.
What i did was added one extra ground wire by inserting a six foot grounded rod into the earth. Actually two six foot ground rods.
This grounded wire was added to a ground buss inside the main breaker box. I used all three pin outlets and the whole house is wired with the extra ground wire. With this set up i could use ground faults GFI. inside the kitchen and bathrooms.
Also no more tingling (mini shocks) when i touch the refrigerator or the range if i am barefooted, which is how i walk inside the house. Everyone else use fit flop inside the house.
When we were building the house the roofers who did the steel trusts complained about the welder not working because of the low supply voltage, voltage was from 180 to 200 VAC. So we purchased our own transformer from Novelco which they installed on the pole and we got a steady supply of 230VAC. Over here in the province one transformer supply many homes, resulting in a voltage drop.

Hi Trevor

That is the same set up as I am planning for my house.  Thought it was clear until I read the post from Doctor M.  I can only assume that there are some old wiring system around in some areas, that were maybe set up in order to be able to arrange for 110v supply into the house.  That is not my intention at all.  I am looking to install a system that for all intents and purposes complies with the 17th Edition of the UK Regulations.  That is with a neutral connected as the return conductor and grounded in the mains panel which is fitted with single pole MCB's, (i.e. switching only the live/hot & no switching of the neutral), RCD's and no ELCB's.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: trevor on July 13, 2016, 04:24:14 PM
David.. I understand what you are looking for. The three wire set up, two hot and one neutral. The two hot supply 220VAC. One hot and the neutral supply 110VAC. I understand that in Baguio and Subic Bay where the U.S. military bases were, there is the three wire set up. Not sure of any place else on Luzon.
I would think it is possible to get what you want but that may be very costly and a big hassle. All appliances here use 220 VAC.  So i just went along with the flow. Here in the province everything is just lax.
One example is we wanted to install a door bell or a gate bell with the press button outside our gate. The ones i could buy here all use 220 VAC. No way i would install a 220 volt push button outside my gate or front door. Sooner or later with use and from personal experiences i know the Push button will deteriorate and fall apart most likely exposing bare wires. Someone press that on a rainy day and standing in a wet fit flop and you know what will happen.
I imported a nice chime from the U.S. along with a 18 volts supply transformer. The primary voltage for the transformer was 110 volts. So i used a 110 volts output step down transformer. 220 to 110. So now i could install my 18 volts house chime. Quite legal and safe. Some day i will try and read up on the electrical code here, if there is one available.
Well good luck with your project and feel free to contact me if you think i can help in anyway. Cheers.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: David690 on July 13, 2016, 05:08:10 PM
David.. I understand what you are looking for. The three wire set up, two hot and one neutral. The two hot supply 220VAC. One hot and the neutral supply 110VAC. I understand that in Baguio and Subic Bay where the U.S. military bases were, there is the three wire set up. Not sure of any place else on Luzon.
I would think it is possible to get what you want but that may be very costly and a big hassle. All appliances here use 220 VAC.  So i just went along with the flow. Here in the province everything is just lax.
One example is we wanted to install a door bell or a gate bell with the press button outside our gate. The ones i could buy here all use 220 VAC. No way i would install a 220 volt push button outside my gate or front door. Sooner or later with use and from personal experiences i know the Push button will deteriorate and fall apart most likely exposing bare wires. Someone press that on a rainy day and standing in a wet fit flop and you know what will happen.
I imported a nice chime from the U.S. along with a 18 volts supply transformer. The primary voltage for the transformer was 110 volts. So i used a 110 volts output step down transformer. 220 to 110. So now i could install my 18 volts house chime. Quite legal and safe. Some day i will try and read up on the electrical code here, if there is one available.
Well good luck with your project and feel free to contact me if you think i can help in anyway. Cheers.

Hi Trevor, sorry I confused you.  I am not looking for that at all, I am installing a 2 wire 220v system, i.e. Live plus Neutral, same as yours.
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on September 10, 2018, 07:15:42 AM
Yes, you can use double pole breakers & switches, so long as the switch or breaker dis-connects both the hot wire and the neutral at the same time, although it wouldn't be necessary on a properly installed system.  As your code reference attachment states you would never want to install a 3-way or 4-way switch in the neutral or grounded conductor, they are actually both single pole switches.  The ground/green wire is not a current carrying conductor, except in the event of a fault, and should never be switched.  One attachments didn't make much sense and I couldn't open 2 attachments.   

On Sunday, September 9, 2018, 2:11:54 AM MDT, peter bates <phugobates@gmail.com> wrote:


Hello Harry.
As a UK expat and retired to Leyte I found your article understandable and very much in line with the electricity (brown out periods not withstanding!!!) here in Leyte. Our house wiring includes the GREEN EARTH and 3 hole socket outlets (NOT switched) but the KOTEN Distribution Board (see attachment) comprises Double Pole Circuit Breakers for each circuit. With the installation electrician being local, I doubt if he was bought up on the AMERICAN style two hot 120V HOT WIRES =240v

1. In UK terms, the Philippines earthing is equivalent to our TT system (see earthing.pdf). Do you agree?
2. PEC/NEC (multipole switches1.png) 14.4.1.2(b) indicates multipole circuit breakers/switches are allowed. Would you consider the GREEN EARTH to be a circuit conductor?
3. There is a view in UK that DP Isolators should be fitted to fixed appliances (? airconn units).

You article advises "...There should NEVER be a fuse or breaker in the neutral white GROUNDED wire..." Are you really saying NEVER, even if the circuit breaker is connected to the HOT wire also?

Thank you.

Peter Bates


    multipole switches1.png
    763.7kB
    2 pole breaker opinions.png
    1.6MB
    KOTEN DISTRIB BOARD.png
    3.4MB
    Electricity | Electricity in the Philippines.webarchive
    2.5MB
    earthing.pdf
    428.5kB
Title: Re: electricity in the Philippines
Post by: harry80020 on November 23, 2018, 09:18:10 PM
Yes, I would "ASSUME" the bare wire is the grounded neutral and the black insulated wire is hot.  But after having to deal with the town electrician in Sibonga, Jerry Silva, and his 2 helpers, I would never assume anything there.  Please please please check with a volt meter first.

On Thursday, November 22, 2018, 8:02:27 PM MST, chrissanchez0526@gmail.com <chrissanchez0526@gmail.com> wrote:


what I have is a 2 wire set up... 240v with a ground wire... I assume the Black insulated wire is the Hoy with the bare aluminum twisted wire is the ground. what's your thought

Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

    On Fri, Nov 16, 2018 at 1:42, Harry Morgan
    <harry80020@yahoo.com> wrote:
    Chris,

        I have no doubt your breaker box isn't properly grounded, it's the way things were done in the USA years ago and the way Filipinos do things today,  Yes you can add a ground wire to your breaker box, but be very very careful.  Because of the way Filipinos do their electric, you don't know which wire is hot and which wire is neutral.  Chances are the neutral is grounded at the transformer and if you ground the wrong wire at your house it will spoil your day, even kill you.  Even then, installing a ground rod at your house will not help the power fluctuations or high electric bill.  As for your bill being too high, one of the neighbors or the landlord might be stealing electricity, not uncommon there.  You can shut everything off in the house and see if the meter is still turning.  Or turn your main breaker or all the breakers off in the evening and see if the meter is still turning or if the lights go off in one of the neighbor's houses. And if they are stealing electricity from a tap in the meter box, turning your breakers off won't disrupt the theft or stop your meter.  You can also look for a wire or extension cord that seems out of place.  It can be anywhere: your meter box, your breaker box, any plug-in, any switch, any light fixture, etc.  It can also be buried under ground so you can't see where it goes.

    Best always,
    Harry.

    On Wednesday, November 14, 2018, 9:00:44 PM MST, chrissanchez0526@gmail.com <chrissanchez0526@gmail.com> wrote:


    Thanks Harry.... one final question regarding the local power here.. I have noticed in my current small temp home,  I dont think it is properly grounded at the breaker box. Is it as simple as shutting off the main and running a ground from the box to a grounding rod? will this 0ize the neutral and stop the fluctuation? my bill is higher than it should be based of other I know with similar or more appliances running and frequency

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

        On Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 22:36, Harry Morgan
        <harry80020@yahoo.com> wrote:
        It depends.  If you have one hot wire at 220 volts like most of the PI, you will need a transformer to get 110/120 volts.  If you have 2 hot wires each with 110/120 volts to ground and 220 volts between them, then you can.

        On Tuesday, November 13, 2018, 5:46:59 PM MST, Chris Sanchez <chrissanchez0526@gmail.com> wrote:


        sorry I meant one of the 120v (not 110)

        On Wed, Nov 14, 2018, 08:45 Chris Sanchez <chrissanchez0526@gmail.com wrote:

            a friend of our family had it done to his house in Davao. So I am hoping it's possible to do here. Would it be possible to run 1 of the 110 to the box and run two grounds, 1 in ground, 1 on bus?

            On Wed, Nov 14, 2018, 05:34 Harry Morgan <harry80020@yahoo.com wrote:

                I doubt you have American style 220 (+110/-110) at your house in the Philippines, although I've heard of it around the old Clark air base and I've also heard they are starting to switch to it on a limited basis.  You'll just have to check what you have or ask the power company.

                On Thursday, November 8, 2018, 1:21:38 AM MST, Chris Sanchez <chrissanchez0526@gmail.com> wrote:


                Harry.. im building a house and would like to install an American electrical panel in my workshop area to run my 120v tools and such. How do i properly connect the 220 at the service connection in order to use the single pole breakers for 120?