Three Phase Rotary Converter: What It Is And How It Works

If a building needs three phase power to power some machinery, it’s best to convert the single phase to three phase using a three phase rotary converter. We blogged last week about what single phase to three phase power is. You can learn more about it here.

To recap from last week’s blog, a business owner may need to convert power from single phase to three phase because he/she has machinery that needs to utilize three phase power. Single phase is usually found in residential homes to power house appliances that require 120v or 240v. Three phase power is usually in commercial or industrial buildings to power big equipment and appliances.

So, when we need to convert single phase power to three phase power in an in-home setting, or a commercial building, we do it by either re-wiring for three phase, or converting it to three phase utilizing a three phase rotary converter. Let’s explain…



What Is A Three Phase Rotary Converter?

A three phase rotary converter converts single phase power to three phase power, without the need to re-wire an entire building for three phase power. It maintains a balanced, stable three phase power source to run machines that need it. 

It makes sense to install and utilize a three phase rotary converter when there isn’t a lot of equipment and machinery necessary to run on three phase. If there is, then it would probably be beneficial to skip the conversion method, and wire the building for three phase. 


How Does A Three Phase Rotary Converter Work?

Three phase rotary converters, like the North America Phase Converter Co. brand we used in our last job, converts single phase to three phase by using an idler (induction generator).  The idler is energized by the single phase lines, and then the idler produces a third leg of power. The two single phase lines are then joined by the third leg of power from the idler to become three phase power. 

The idler is the brain of the rotary converter. It allows certain machines and appliances with big motors to run like elevators, certain heaters, large cooking equipment, table saws, welding machines, lasers, etc. Basically anything that needs three phase power to operate, the idler in the three phase rotary converter is responsible for supplying balanced and steady voltage for these things to run properly. 


Who Can Install My Three Phase Rotary Converter?

Hire a licensed electrician to install your three phase rotary converter. An electrician will be able to properly wire it up to code for safety and compliance. An electrician will know how to install everything that needs to be installed for the converter to properly and efficiently work, which can include a sub panel, disconnect, and transformer. 

Whether you are looking to power your three phase equipment at your home or at your business, KB Electric LLC can help you install your single to three phase system with a rotary converter. Call us today! (267) 467-3178