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Old 08-15-2011, 12:46 AM   #1
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Default simple ekettle questions...please help me from burning down my apt

I am wanting to convert my 10 gallon kettle into a stove assisted ekettle. I dont want anything fancy with PID just a simple plug in and brew. My kitchen has 1 20amp circuit with a 15amp plug. I live in an appartment which is very old but well kept and I am not sure what condition the wiring is in. Because of these factors should I stick to 1500W max or can I move up to something higher such as 1650-2000? I would like to stick with a 120V element to save on size as i use a false bottom with 3 legs and a big rippled element might cause a problem. Also, some elements i look at are made with SS some are zinc coated. Does this matter? Any adivce would be much appreciated.

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Old 08-15-2011, 01:13 AM   #2
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Get this SS 120V 2000W. Cover the face with food grade silicone sealant to prevent rusting.

Don't get the zinc plated ones, the plating will come off perhaps adding unhealthy doses of zinc to your brew.

The 2000W will work on your 20A circuit. The 15A outlet is not an issue as long as you have 12 gauge wire running to it and it is GFCI. Usually kitchens have two 20A GFCI, one on each side of the kitchen.

2000W is better as it will heat wort quicker, and then you can dial in the boil on the stove.

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Old 08-15-2011, 03:08 AM   #3
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yes it is a GFCI and for sure 20 amp. So I dont need to worry about the old wiring?

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Old 08-15-2011, 10:29 AM   #4
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How old are we talking? Like knob and tube old?

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Old 08-15-2011, 12:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orangehero View Post
Get this SS 120V 2000W. Cover the face with food grade silicone sealant to prevent rusting.

Don't get the zinc plated ones, the plating will come off perhaps adding unhealthy doses of zinc to your brew.

The 2000W will work on your 20A circuit. The 15A outlet is not an issue as long as you have 12 gauge wire running to it and it is GFCI. Usually kitchens have two 20A GFCI, one on each side of the kitchen.

2000W is better as it will heat wort quicker, and then you can dial in the boil on the stove.

Regarding the zinc plating, I have two Home Depot elements in my keggle. Are these zinc plated? Can anyone chime in regarding the level of danger here?

As for a 15A outlet on a 20A line, you could easily change the receptacle. A 20A plug will not fit in a 15A outlet.

Will this element be mounted in your brew pot?
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Old 08-15-2011, 01:26 PM   #6
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The apartment complex was built in the 50s but has undergone several rounds of refurbishment i am assuming. I'm sure it is up to code. I could turn off the breaker and look at the wire to see if it is in good condition. I will be mounting this with a weldless kit into my SS kettle. Do I need to use a 20A plug or can I just use a 15A plug? I was planning on buying some 12 gauge wire and plug and put it all together myself. Again thanks for all the help

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Old 08-15-2011, 04:45 PM   #7
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You may already know this, but a 20A receptacle has a different prong than a 15A. So that's the first concern.

2000W/120v = 16.7Amps. This is the draw of a 2000W element. So you'll want a 20A line dedicated to it with nothing else on the line.

How much are you boiling here? 2000W will get you a pretty nice boil on your average 6 gallon batch in the brew pot. So if you have a stove and you just want to supplement, you can go with less and then not worry about the draw so much. Get a 1500W element and you should be in business, that is, unless you're doing 10 gallon batches on the stove.

Your use of the word "wire" when discussing the element concerns me. Standard Romex is not waterproof and not meant to be moved around. You'll want to consult a build thread to get all the info you need. If you misspoke and know what to do, my apologies.

Check out Kal's build. The electric Brewery.

Also CHECK OUT THIS THREAD for ideas on how to properly pot your element.

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Old 08-15-2011, 05:06 PM   #8
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You may already know this, but a 20A receptacle has a different prong than a 15A. So that's the first concern.
Not really. Code allows 15A outlets on 20A circuits. In fact, that's normal in most kitchens.
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Old 08-15-2011, 05:12 PM   #9
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I have been doing a lot of reading on the electric brewery page and it is my main write up to follow. I do have a 15A outlet (not a 20 with the horizontal slot). Can I run a 2000W element plugged into a 15A outlet? I have been looking mainly at 2000W cause of the LWD elements but reading a little more it seems like the scorching with HD elements is a myth so I may just go with a 1500W since I can use my stove as an assist.

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Old 08-15-2011, 05:49 PM   #10
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I have been doing a lot of reading on the electric brewery page and it is my main write up to follow. I do have a 15A outlet (not a 20 with the horizontal slot). Can I run a 2000W element plugged into a 15A outlet? I have been looking mainly at 2000W cause of the LWD elements but reading a little more it seems like the scorching with HD elements is a myth so I may just go with a 1500W since I can use my stove as an assist.
Is the breaker and wiring rated for 20A? If so and the 15A outlet concerns you, it's a trivial swap - 20A outlets are compatible with 15A plugs.
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