An article by one of our home inspectors providing more information about electrical load.
Not many would know about type of electrical connections and load factors in Domestic wiring. Broadly, either a house has single-phase or three-phase connection. Lets understand why do we need three-phase to our home, technically & more needfully, if you happen to own a home with domestic appliances such as Air Conditioners, Washing machines, Storage water heaters, Grinders, Ovens, Iron box, or even big Refrigerators etc.
Previously, single-phase was very common for domestic purposes since there were no water heaters or AC’s or Grinders in the house. But, world and technology is changing fast, so do we all, making our lives more and more mechanized, or rather, electro-mechanized. Nowadays, almost every home has appliances like refrigerator, water heaters, AC’s, microwave, dishwater so on & so forth and hence there’s a rising trend in our electrical consumption, which has made it mandatory, technically as well as electrical regulation/rule wise, demanding three-phase connection for electrical loads in domestic wiring circuits.
As an electrical inspector, I inspected one of the 3BHK houses in a posh apartment complex but the flat was provided with a single-phase connection. The statistics clearly show that the user would suffer, technically, more so, from a electrical safety point of view, which demands 3 Phase connections. Situation could turn alarming, since they can use only one geyser and one AC simultaneously but not two geysers at the same time else the load distribution might get affected, if not immediate, it would surely have an impact on the wiring circuits in the long run! In technical words, the total load / maximum demand capacity drawable to the flat is 3KVA, wherein the full load current would be around 12A – 15A. For 25 litres geysers (of 2kw power), the full load current would be around 8A (P=VxA; 2000 = 230 x A which means 8 A). Effectively, remaining load will be 12-8=4A for the rest of the appliances. If two geysers are used simultaneously, the full load current would be 16A which exceeds the full capacity thereby damaging the electrical circuitry (burning of wires, increased MCB heating etc.). Situation could worsen further, if other loads like, Iron Box, Grinder, Washing Machine etc.. are all switched on simultaneously, possibility of which cannot be ruled out.
Electrical safety is of utmost importance!
Well, this alone explains the logic, it’s not Murphy’s Law which makes the electrical circuits to trip during any special event at home, but the plain summation of all big loads operating simultaneously during any special occasions at home, thereby exceeding the capacity / load, which the circuit can take, leading to unsafe operation and tripping of circuits.
In fact, Electrical Short Circuits are the pre-dominant reason behind most of the deadly fire accidents anywhere in world, more so, in our country, where electrical regulations of the above kind are yet to gain the recognition and acceptance, it really deserves.
Hence, it is important / underlines why we all should know the electrical specifications of your / our dream home based on life style/appliance usage before finalising one.