What a waste to have the equipment of you dreams in your own shop just sitting there, not being able to be used because it is three-phase and your shop only has single-phase power! What can be done with it? Well, Three Phase Converter is here to save you!
With a phase converter, you can get your three-phase equipment up and running just like it would run if you had utility three-phase power. Below are common questions and tips that will smooth the process of picking out the right phase converter and proper setup for your needs.
WHERE DO I START WITH SIZING A PHASE CONVERTER?
It can be a bit overwhelming just finding out that you need a phase converter and not knowing where to start looking. There is a lot of information out there about phase converters. Some of it is true and some of it is incorrect. The best thing to do is to contact someone that is familiar with the different types of converters out there and can go over what your current and future needs are. This will help design a phase converter that will not only work for you now but also as you grow and add in more equipment. Once you have that initial conversation, of how a phase converter can benefit your shop, then it is time to start tailoring it to the size converter that you need.
WHAT INFORMATION SHOULD I HAVE AVAILABLE TO HELP SMOOTH THE PROCESS ALONG?
There is actually not too much information that is needed when it comes to sizing a phase converter. All that is needed is the type of machine it is, the machines power requirements (this will be listed in HP, AMPs, kW, or kVA), and the voltage listed. There are different types of phase converters that are designed for different style loads. There are phase converters set up light-duty loads, CNC, resistive, and hard starting loads. Each load runs differently and has different starting loads. Going over the type of machine will help determine which phase converter will work best. One thing to keep in mind with an ATO rotary system is, there is no harm in going with a phase converter for a larger load even if your current load does not require it. It is better to go bigger now than find out later that you need it.
HAVE AN IDEA OF THE SETUP AND IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO ADD IN MORE EQUIPMENT.
Knowing where you want to place the phase converter will help determine how we tailor the phase converter to your needs. In some cases, the phase converter may need to be portable, you may need it to run multiple machines, or you may need the phase converter to be mounted in a separate location than where the machines will be running. We have offered many different phase converters options to best fit your particular shop’s needs.
WHERE DOES MY PHASE CONVERTER HAVE TO BE INSTALLED?
The phase converter can be installed where ever you need it to be. There are different options available depending on where you need the phase converter set up. The unit comes standard as an indoor unit but there are options to split the converter and have the panel inside and the idler outside, vise versa, or even the complete unit outside. There are customers who even have the phase converter split even when installed inside. They will place the panel in one spot and the idler in another. This makes it versatile to meet any shop space considerations and environments.
SIZING 2:1 RULE OF THUMB
A general and quick rule of thumb when sizing a rotary phase converter is that when looking at the HP rating of your machine, you want to double that to get the size phase converter that is needed. For example, if you have a 10 HP motor then a 20 HP phase converter is needed. This is related to the start load of a machine and the fact that you are pulling from single-phase power to operate a three-phase machine. However, there are exceptions to this rule but during your first planning stages of looking at a phase converter, this will give you an idea to help budget and plan towards.
One thing that is worth noting is that not all phase converter companies size their phase converters the same. Rotary phase converters all still apply to the 2:1 rule of thumb, but the label on the different phase converter may not be the same. We size the phase converter based on the actual size of the converter so that way you are aware of the size converter you can expect. Some other companies will label their phase converter based on the size load it can operate. This can be misleading because you may be expecting a 10 HP phase converter since your load is 10 HP, but in reality, you are getting a 20 HP phase converter. This can affect your planning, cost analysis, electrical rough-in, and even breaker sizing.
Following these steps and recommendations will help you get started in planning towards utilizing a Three Phase Converter in your shop. Having the ability to run three-phase equipment in your shop opens up a lot of options for additional equipment that you can run. A lot of times three-phase equipment is less expensive than a comparable single-phase machine due to the availability of three-phase. Always feel free to reach out to us with any questions that you may have!