Understanding Electric Transfer Switches

An electric transfer switch is used to switch power from one source to another. In many cases, an electric transfer switch is used when a building has a back-up generator. Installing an electric transfer switch is a good idea when there is an emergency generator, whether in a residential or commercial building. Continue reading to learn more about electric transfer switches:

How Electric Transfer Switches Work

An electric transfer switch continually monitors the power level of a circuit. If a circuit loses power completely, the electric transfer switch will shut off the circuit to the main power source and transfer over to the secondary power source. An electrical transfer switch is not just for power outages-- it will also switch power sources in the event of a voltage change or a surge/spike in electrical power. A transfer switch keeps both sources of power completely isolated from each other, so you do not have to worry about any electrical problems occurring. 

Types of Electric Transfer Switches

Electric transfer switches are available in either automatic or manual models. With an automatic electrical transfer switch, the transfer of power happens automatically without any type of human intervention. In most cases, automatic electrical transfer switches are preferred, especially in places where loss of power can be an emergency, such as a hospital.

But some people still prefer to use manual electric transfer switches, especially if the generator has a limited amount of fuel and can't operate for an indefinite amount of time. A manual electric transfer switch allows a person to decide when to switch from the primary power source to the secondary power source.

Why Generators Need Electric Transfer Switches

It is possible to power electrical appliances and machinery directly from a generator. But doing so comes with a number of risks, such as frying the electrical components connected to the generator, causing problems with wiring, and damaging your generator. Having an electric transfer switch installed eliminates these problems and ensures that your generator operates on a proper circuit.

Installing a Transfer Switch

While it is possible for a person to install an electric transfer switch on their own, but it is not recommended. If you want to ensure that your electric transfer switch is properly installed, it is in your best interest to hire an experienced electrician. When you hire an electrician to do the installation, you will have the peace of mind of knowing that everything is wired properly.

Contact a manufacturer, like Enercon  Engineering Inc , for more help.

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