Q:

What size wire is necessary for a 50 amp breaker?

A:

Quick Answer

A 50-amp breaker uses four wires, two of which are hot feeds of 120 volts. This results in 50 amps at 120 volts for each leg.

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Full Answer

Voltage is the measurement of differences in electric potential energy. Amps measure the current or how much electricity something is using. Using the proper voltage to handle the amps is important because it is the vehicle that voltage pushes through a wire. The wire is like a bridge and it needs to be able to handle the demand of the amps and voltage or else it fails to power the appliance or other electrical component.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the correct size wire for 60 amp service?

    A:

    For 60-amp electrical service, 6-gauge copper or aluminum wire is the correct size to power such devices as electric furnaces and large electric heaters. A 50-amp circuit breaker or fuse box can also be powered by 6-gauge wire. When the amperage increases, the width of the wire needs to be larger to conduct more electricity. The American Wire Gauge system features smaller gauge numbers as wire widths increase.

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  • Q:

    What size wire is required for 200-amp service?

    A:

    According to Houston Wire & Cable Company, National Electric Code Tables 310.15 B6 and 310.16 specify that 2/0 gauge copper wire can be used for service or feeder connections to a 200-amp panel. The source lists 4/0 gauge aluminum wire as another acceptable option.

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    What size electric wire do you need for a 60 amp load?

    A:

    A 60-amp load requires a nine-gauge wire or less for chassis wiring and a four-gauge wire or less for power transmission. Safety margins generally dictate using a lesser gauge wire to avoid overloading. These two gauges, measured by the American Wire Gauge standard, differ in diameter by 0.0899 inches.

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  • Q:

    What is the function of a neutral wire?

    A:

    The function of a neutral wire is to serve as the return path for the 120 volts of alternating current supplied by a hot wire. The neutral wire connects to an earth ground.

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