For more than 100 years, we have been blessed with an electricity supply and if you look around your home or office, almost everything you use and own operates on electricity. Although not all electricity is the same. You may have heard about single phase power and three phase power, but what does this actually mean?
Single phase power is the most common system and is mainly used in residential homes and in small, non industrial business. Whereas, three phase power is more commonly used in commercial and industrial buildings, where heavy loads of power is used.
Single phase power is the distribution of alternating current (AC) where all the voltages of the supply vary in unison. Single phase power is usually connected at 240 volts and is delivered to the home or office with two wires, active (phase) and neutral. Single phase power is used for everyday equipment such as lights, TV’s, radios and fridges. Although at times domestic houses can require three phase power, such as if you have a huge house needing a large capacity air conditioner, or if you require high powered electrical equipment, or for running machinery such as farm machinery.
Three phase power has four wires, three actives (phases) and one neutral. The three currents alternate mean a steady stream of power is delivered at a constant rate, making it possible to carry more load/power. Three phase power provides around 400 volts, which means it is ideal for higher power loads, such as large industrial equipment and machinery, commercial buildings with a wide range of high powered devices, large ducted air conditioning systems and electrical motors and generators.
Three phase power although required for commercial and industrial buildings, can be quite expensive to install, but ongoing costs can be more affordable than single phase systems. These three phase systems are absolutely necessary in large business, industry and manufacturing, in order to efficiently run high load devices and equipment.
If you have a single phase system and require a higher voltage three phase system, there are a number of “Phase Changer Converters” available, which can be professionally installed by our team at MakoAir. These phase converters are an effective way to operate high load equipment, where only a single phase service is available. For more information about electricity standards, refer to the Australian Energy Regulator at www.aer.gov.au.
So now you are aware of the difference between single phase and three phase systems, please make sure before you purchase any high powered machinery, tools, equipment, or heating and cooling systems, that you check the voltage required, or please call us at MakoAir on 0490333461 and lets us share our knowledge, experience and expertise with you.