Thermostat hook up

Volt-Amperes
Contents:


  1. hvac - How can I add a "C" wire to my thermostat? - Home Improvement Stack Exchange
  2. Welcome to Schluter Systems
  3. Stripping Thermostat Wire
  4. Thermostat Wiring for Dummies
  5. Ye olde thermostat
Locating transformers

There are no standards for wire color, so any wire could be used for any purpose. The most common color code would be note: This solution is illustrated in this video from Honeywell. With this solution you lose the ability to manually turn on the blower fan, but the fan will still run properly in the Auto position. This procedure involves modifying the wiring in the furnace, and may not be approved by every manufacturer. Check with the furnace manufacturer, and all local codes before attempting this procedure.

Make sure the breaker for the furnace is OFF before you begin. A transformer uses coils of wire, magnetism, and a bit of magic to transfer energy from the primary side of the transformer to the secondary side of the transformer.

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hvac - How can I add a "C" wire to my thermostat? - Home Improvement Stack Exchange

Usually during the transfer, the voltage is either increased or decreased. Once the voltage has been reduced, we can use the lower voltage and a thermostat to control the furnace. This is an actual wiring diagram from a furnace, but you'll notice I've highlighted a few things. First, in red I've highlighted the V primary side of the transformer. I've also highlighted the secondary side of the transformer in a couple shades of blue. This was done to illustrate that one side of the transformers secondary winding light blue , is attached to the R or power terminal.

While the other side of the secondary winding dark blue , is attached to the C or "neutral" terminal.

Welcome to Schluter Systems

Often you'll see a number written on each side, which denotes the expected voltages on each side of the transformer. Notice in the schematic above that the top side lists V volts , while the bottom lists 24V 24 volts. Notice the rectangular middle section, flanked by a bulge on each side.


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  • Wire A Thermostat.
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  • Wire A Thermostat?

These are the typical physical characteristics of a transformer. Transformers typically have a volt-ampere VA rating, which can be used to determine the amount of current that can safely flow through the transformers coil wires. To determine the maximum current, simply divide the VA value by the voltage. Normally this is not a problem, since the only things supplied by the transformer are switches and relays.

If you install a thermostat that draws more current than the transformer can carry, you're going run into problems.

Stripping Thermostat Wire

So in this case, you'll have to upgrade the transformer and any fuses that protect it since the fuses are sized based on the VA rating. In some systems, there will be separate transformers for the heating and cooling systems. In these situations, you'll have to check with the thermostat manufacturer, to determine which system should provide the C wire.

In the case of Nest and Honeywell and probably others , their thermostats expect the C wire to come from the cooling system. When you're connecting the wires to the thermostat in these systems, you'll have to remove any jumpers between the R terminals. You'll wire the R wire from the heating system, to R or Rh , and the R wire from the cooling system, to Rc.

Then you'll have to wire the C wire from the cooling system, to the C terminal of the thermostat. Assuming your thermostat and furnace are compatible and you're just short on conductors between them, you could use one of these add-a-wire devices. This device won't work for C wires.

Thermostat Wiring for Dummies

However, it does allow one to combine two of the other relay wires down to 1, freeing up a dedicated wire for C. HVAC systems with more functions need more wires to communicate to and from the thermostat. The 5 strands of wire provide enough functions for the modern thermostat. Read reviews and find the best prices on Amazon. For simple heating applications, a 2 conductor wire is sufficient. Multi-stage systems can require up to 8 conductors because of the amount of communication needed between the thermostat and air handler or furnace.

Ye olde thermostat

For shorter runs use 20 gauge. But an important issue here is that the diagrams and wiring color codes are going to be the most common standardize method. Always keep in mind that who ever wired your thermostat may not have followed these procedures and your color codes will not match the following examples.


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  • The Thermostat Wiring Color Code Guide.
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  • Wiring Set-Up Explained.

You will have to determine this before you start disconnecting any of your thermostat wiring. I would highly recommend that you write down what color wire is going to which terminal. This way if your color codes don't match the normal code as the chart below indicates, you can still get a good idea of which wire should go where on your new thermostat. If you're changing your old style thermostat to a programmable type, then most HVAC systems are compatible and will work just fine with a programmable unit.

But in the case of a Heat Pump system, You'll really have to do some research to verify that the programmable thermostat will work.

Furnace 2 wire thermostat install

The following is a chart showing the most common terminals and their respective color codes and what that particular wire is used for in the circuit. Now most thermostat's will not have all of these termination points but the chart will help you determine color code and connection points for your particular unit. The diagram below shows how a basic 4-wire thermostat is connected as indicated by the color code chart above. The diagram shows how the wiring works.