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Old 12-23-2013, 02:47 AM   #1
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Default Building smoker, a few PID questions

Hi, I have looked at quite a few diagrams and threads regarding the set up of a PID for temperature control of electric smokers. I am considering building a PID controller box for an electric smoker and just had a few questions to make sure I do this correctly and safely.

1) I was planning on ultimately using the PID with a 1500 watt heating element, so based on this, the current being drawn by the element should be around 13A, correct?
2) I was thinking of using 12 AWG wiring for the input as well as wires connected to the outlet and the relay, while using 18 or 20 AWG wire for the wires running to the PID. Would this be sufficient?
3) I was planning on housing the unit in a plastic junction box, with the heat sink on the outside of the box. It would be a good idea to connect a ground wire to the heat sink for safety purposes, correct?
4) As far as fuses go, should a 1A fuse be good enough for protecting the PID? Also what size fuse would be good for the heating element? I was thinking something around 16A, but I'm not entirely sure?

Thanks for the help

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Old 12-23-2013, 04:47 PM   #2
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1 - 12.5 amps @ 120v
2 - 12AWG is fine for that amperage...I think I ran 16 gauge to my pids, they don't draw very much energy at all; however, it gets into how you have it wired.
3 - You are running an SSR I assume, the heat sink contact is not electrically hot
4 - IDK on the PID, probably plenty good at 1amp though. Your breaker is likely a 15 amp and would pop first. I wouldn't bother with a breaker on the element and just plug the whole unit into a GFCI outlet.

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Old 12-23-2013, 09:06 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bensiff View Post
1 - 12.5 amps @ 120v
2 - 12AWG is fine for that amperage...I think I ran 16 gauge to my pids, they don't draw very much energy at all; however, it gets into how you have it wired.
3 - You are running an SSR I assume, the heat sink contact is not electrically hot
4 - IDK on the PID, probably plenty good at 1amp though. Your breaker is likely a 15 amp and would pop first. I wouldn't bother with a breaker on the element and just plug the whole unit into a GFCI outlet.
Thanks for the help! I just wasn't too sure whether the heat sink would be dangerous outside the box if a wire happened to get loose inside the enclosure and come into contact with it on the inside. And good point on the element. I didn't even think of the breaker going first.
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