Help needed for eBrewing system I bought. (Plug is HHN 3 prong twist lock. 250v to the elements, switches and internals run 125v. Trips GFCI.)

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GlenF

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So I recently bought an electric brewing system that has a 3 prong H-H-N twist lock plug to power the panel. It trips the GFCI breaker immediately when I plug it into my 125v/250v 3 prong twist lock outlet.
Internally, one leg of the H and the N is used to power the PID and switches and runs to an AC to 9v DC converter to run smaller pumps.
How can I get this to operate safely and not trip the GFCI breaker?

Thanks in advance for all help!
 

doug293cz

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You need to supply the panel with a 4-wire (HHNG) GFCI protected source. You can't run 120V/240V mixed on a 3 wire GFCI protected source.

Did you buy a DIY from another brewer, or is this a commercially built unit?

Brew on :mug:
 

doug293cz

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That brewer was probably running without GFCI protection. Not a good idea - saving a buck is not worth dying for.

Depending on the components used, and the specific panel design, it might be possible to easily convert it to 240V only operation. If so then it wouldn't trip the GFCI. Do you have a design drawing for the panel (I would never buy a DIY panel that didn't come with completed design information - you have nowhere to go for maintenance, except yourself.)

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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You are correct. He lived in an old farm house and did not run w/ GFI protection. Brewed on that system for 10 years, he said.
I don't have a design drawing, but I could snap some pics later, if that would help.
Thanks!
 

doug293cz

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You are correct. He lived in an old farm house and did not run w/ GFI protection. Brewed on that system for 10 years, he said.
I don't have a design drawing, but I could snap some pics later, if that would help.
Thanks!
Pics might help. But may or may not be enough to reverse engineer.

Brew on :mug:
 

IslandLizard

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@doug293cz is the expert on electrical panels.

I'm just adding a few ideas as extra food for thought:
You could run all 120V items on a separate feed (cable) and its own 120V GFCI breaker.
Then you can repurpose the "Neutral" conductor in the 240V cable as ground and use your existing 240V GFCI breaker just for the 240V [H-H] supply.
But you'll need to do some rewiring inside your panel. That can be a chore if you don't already have a schematic of it.

Or keep everything as is, and run a separate ground wire from your main panel to your brew panel. I think that should work fine. You do need the special main panel GFCI that monitors the current on the neutral as well.

In that light, many will buy a spa panel to connect their brew panel to.
Spa panels usually include a GFCI breaker that suits your purpose (GFCI on all 3 legs, H-H-N) and can be had usually for far less than such main panel GFCI breaker would cost, if available at all.
You do need a feed to the spa panel, and have a regular double pole breaker in your main panel, though.
Now spa panels have been going up steadily in price the last few years, so check around first.
 
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GlenF

GlenF

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Yea, I thought about adding a plug to connect to a 110v wall outlet to run the internals, which could also act to ground the panel and elements.
I think the twist lock outlet is connected to HHN also, which likely runs back to the gfi breaker. Would I have to open up the outlet and hook up the G wire instead? Where would neutral go, and doesn't a GFCI require a neutral input?
Thanks!
 
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GlenF

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doug293cz

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The original builder did not stick to the one color, one voltage/one phase wiring rule. Can't tell from the pics what runs on 120V within the panel. That makes things more difficult to reverse engineer.

Do you happen to know which components in the box use 120V?

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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the switches and PID and 120 goes to the converter.
 

doug293cz

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the switches and PID and 120 goes to the converter.
Most PID's and switching voltage converters can work from 240V, as well as 120V. The switches can also work with 240V. What are the specific PID and converter that you are using?

Brew on :mug:
 

doug293cz

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doug293cz

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Classic P&B high current high voltage power relays. I like those, they make a nice snap/click sound when they engage.
Unfortunately, these relays have 120V coils, so cannot be driven from 240V. They will need to be replaced with 240V coil equivalent. The source you link is way overpriced. You can get equivalents for ~$10 or less. Google "CN-PBC302-240V"

Again, the gnd/neutral to the coil gets replaced by the hot phase not used on the other side of the coil.

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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So I'll order 2 new relays, and I'll also need to get a 240v selector switch to choose HLT vs. BK, right? Also, if I run this at hh n/g, will I need 4 pole plugs or can I use the existing outlet and plugs?

Thanks!
 

doug293cz

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So I'll order 2 new relays, and I'll also need to get a 240v selector switch to choose HLT vs. BK, right? Also, if I run this at hh n/g, will I need 4 pole plugs or can I use the existing outlet and plugs?

Thanks!
There is a good chance the selector switch is already rated for 240V. See if you can find a rating printed on the side, or a part number.

If you remove all use of 120V inside the controller, then you can use a 3 wire power feed. It will be H-H-G, with no neutral.

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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There is a good chance the selector switch is already rated for 240V. See if you can find a rating printed on the side, or a part number.

If you remove all use of 120V inside the controller, then you can use a 3 wire power feed. It will be H-H-G, with no neutral.

Brew on :mug:
How will that work with the GFCI breaker? Doesn't GFCI rely on neutral signal, or because they are essentially the same in this 240v system, it wouldn't matter? I think the outlet is wired HHN (specifically, but it's on a garage subpanel so N and G are bonded back at the main panel. And could I ground the kettles and control box into that G/N input, as well because it's a G/N?

And here is the selector switch: The Reynolds Company - Electric Company

Thanks!
 
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RufusBrewer

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A GFCI measures how much is current goes out of one leg and compares it to how much current returns on other leg. If the going out does not match the return, it assumes an error and shuts down the circuit.

In the case 240 VAC Leg 1 and Leg 2, it compares how much leaves Leg 1 and how much comes back on Leg 2. If Leg 2 is less than Leg 1, it assumes the "missing" current is going through you and shuts down the circuit.

In the example of 120 VAC, It measures how much current leaves Hot and how much comes back through the Neutral. If there is less returning through neutral, it assumes the "missing" current is going through you and shuts down the circuit.

Ground does not really play into it.
 

doug293cz

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How will that work with the GFCI breaker? Doesn't GFCI rely on neutral signal, or because they are essentially the same in this 240v system, it wouldn't matter? I think the outlet is wired HHN (specifically, but it's on a garage subpanel so N and G are bonded back at the main panel. And could I ground the kettles and control box into that G/N input, as well because it's a G/N?

Thanks!
If the third wire connects to the neutral bus in the subpanel, then your circuit is wired wrong. There should never be a H-H-N circuit. Even if an H-H-N was allowable, then your GFCI is wired incorrectly. A correctly wired 240V GFCI senses the current on both hots and the neutral. This is how you can have both 240V and 120V loads, and not trip the GFCI. If the GFCI is not sensing the neutral (because the neutral is not correctly wired to the GFCI) then any 120V load will cause an imbalance in the equal and opposite currents in the two hots, thus tripping the GFCI.

My recommendation is to get your subpanel and GFCI breaker wired correctly, and run a H-H-N-G feed to your control panel. I will not help you figure out non-code work-arounds.

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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If the third wire connects to the neutral bus in the subpanel, then your circuit is wired wrong. There should never be a H-H-N circuit. Even if an H-H-N was allowable, then your GFCI is wired incorrectly. A correctly wired 240V GFCI senses the current on both hots and the neutral. This is how you can have both 240V and 120V loads, and not trip the GFCI. If the GFCI is not sensing the neutral (because the neutral is not correctly wired to the GFCI) then any 120V load will cause an imbalance in the equal and opposite currents in the two hots, thus tripping the GFCI.

My recommendation is to get your subpanel and GFCI breaker wired correctly, and run a H-H-N-G feed to your control panel. I will not help you figure out non-code work-arounds.

Brew on :mug:
I can check the outlet and the breaker. If it's HHG will that work w/ a GFCI?
 
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GlenF

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For a three wire H-H-G to work with GFCI, you must eliminate all of the 120V loads from your control panel.

Brew on :mug:
Yea, that's the plan. I'll have to get those new relay switches that you mentioned and make sure the 12v converter can run 240v. It looks like the temp controller will work, and I couldn't tell if the HLT/OFF/BK selector switch can run 240v or if I need a new one. I linked the part earlier in the thread.
I have 3 prong HHG twist lock plugs and outlet already on the 50amp GFCI 240v circuit.
 
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GlenF

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Alrighty, just checked the AC/DC adapter. Model: LW-065/500/120/001
Input: 100-240v~1.5A 50/60Hz
Output: 12v=5A

So it looks like it will work with HH full service. My outlet reads 250v w/ a multimeter, will that slightly overload this, as it's recommended 240v?

Thanks!
 

doug293cz

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Alrighty, just checked the AC/DC adapter. Model: LW-065/500/120/001
Input: 100-240v~1.5A 50/60Hz
Output: 12v=5A

So it looks like it will work with HH full service. My outlet reads 250v w/ a multimeter, will that slightly overload this, as it's recommended 240v?

Thanks!
I looked at the specs on the selector switch, and it's good to at least 300V.

250V vs. 240V won't be a problem.

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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I looked at the specs on the selector switch, and it's good to at least 300V.

250V vs. 240V won't be a problem.

Brew on :mug:
Awesome, thanks for checking! I'll look at theElectric Brewery for the 240v European wiring schematic and see what paired down version of a wiring diagram I can come up with for critique/ feedback.

Cheers!
 
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GlenF

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Sorry for the extended hiatus, but here is what I was able to come up with. Please let me know if I missed anything or messed anything up.

Thanks!
 

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GlenF

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I looked at the specs on the selector switch, and it's good to at least 300V.

250V vs. 240V won't be a problem.

Brew on :mug:
Does my sketch up look like it is wired correctly?
Thanks!
 

doug293cz

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Does my sketch up look like it is wired correctly?
Thanks!
The output of the PID is not wired correctly to drive the HLT contactor (relay.) The PID output is just a single pole relay, and does not provide any power on its own. You have to wire one hot to one terminal of the PID output, and then connect the other output terminal to the contactor coil. The other contactor coil connection goes to the other hot.

Can't tell if your selector switch is wired correctly, since there are many options for a switch with the PN you linked. Need to know whether it is a two or three position switch, and how many and what type (NO or NC) switch blocks are included.

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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And here is the temp controller:
1618107983495.png

Which wires should connect with which ports?

Thanks again!
 

doug293cz

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800H-JR2 or 800H-JR2A? The first is just the knob mechanism, but no actual switches. The second has two switch blocks and will work in your application, but thedoesn way you have it shown in your drawing would be incorrect.

Brew on :mug:
The switch doesn't say 2A, but I'm guessing that's the one, because it has 3 settings. The middle position is off, and left and right each have wired out connections. One controls HLT and one the BK.
 
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GlenF

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Also, I'm wondering if I could just swap the current relay switches for the new 240v coil ones and then reroute whatever is connected to the ground/ neutral wire to one hot leg so that it all runs 240v instead of 120/ 240v. Would that work? Seems to be the simplest route, rather than rewiring everything....
 

doug293cz

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Also, I'm wondering if I could just swap the current relay switches for the new 240v coil ones and then reroute whatever is connected to the ground/ neutral wire to one hot leg so that it all runs 240v instead of 120/ 240v. Would that work? Seems to be the simplest route, rather than rewiring everything....
That's basically all that is required. Just have to make sure that the hot you swap for N/G is opposite of the one connected to the other power input on any device.

If you use the wrong hot, I don't think there are any scenarios where that can result in a hot to hot short. The device "powered" with two wires of the same hot phase will just not work.

Brew on :mug:
 
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GlenF

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1619403335056.jpeg

Good news, everyone!

So I wired in the new 220v coil relay contactors and traced the wiring back to determine which hot leg was already in use. I then disconnected the neutral/ ground and connected the other hot leg to the coils and other components. Plugged everything in, breaker didn't trip, temp controller lit up and gave an accurate ambient temp and set-temp reading, and everything seems to run as intended! Selector switch works to control HLT vs. BK elements, and the 12v pumps all work.

Thank you so much for your help, insight, and patience!!
If you're ever in Urbana, IL, hit me up, because beer's on me :)
 
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