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Do residential homes have single-phase or three-phase service?
Sunday, December 12, 2021
Virtually all residences have single-phase electrical service. Less than 1%—actually way less than 1%—have three-phase. It is expensive to install and would only be useful if the homeowner had a workshop with large electric motors or the house was a sprawling mega-mansion. Three phase provides higher voltage and its configuration is more efficient for running electric motors.
But there was a time in the mid-20th century when three-phase service was necessary so wealthier homeowners could run one of those new-fangled central air conditioners. A variant of three-phase called “High-Leg Delta” was required. It is a long-gone bit of electrical history now, and banned by the electrical code for new installations. To read about it, go to our article Why is there a 3-phase breaker in a single phase electric panel with only two bus bars?
To learn more, go to What is three phase electric service? and What is a reliable way to tell if the electrical service is 3 phase or single phase? and What is the difference between single-phase and three-phase electric service?
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