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How To Identify Electrical Components Without An Electrician's Help

Electricians go to school for years before they become apprenticed, and then they remain apprentices for a couple more years before they are full-fledged electricians. During that time, they learn about almost every single type of switch, control, transformer, and wire in existence. The longer that an electrician remains in his or her chosen profession, the more he or she learns about electrical components. However, if you want to be able to identify the electrical components your industrial machines need without an electrician's help, here are some basic parts and their descriptions.

AC Current Switch AC means "alternating current," while DC means "direct current." In this case, you want to know how to identify the AC variety of current switches. There is just one problem; switches come in all forms, shapes, and sizes, depending on their intended use. For the sake of argument, let's say that the switch you need to identify is for the operation of an industrial machine. These switches are typically flat, have the appearance of a plug-in cartridge, and will say what type of electrical current they are meant for. They may have a few extra wires or a cable attached which helps the switches plug into your machines.

AC Current Sensor

This is a tiny switchboard or electrical pad that is triggered by the presence of current, or by a surge in power.  It may have a couple of wires attached to one side of the sensor. The wires end in little plug-in pieces, or bare wire ends are left for soldering the sensor into the AC current switch.

Split Core Current Transformer

Split core current transformers have a geometric shape, but the component itself is made to "split" into two fairly equal parts. This feature allows the transformer to fit over several other components that are too difficult to get past or around without the transformer's split. They are often coated in a drab gray vinyl layer to prevent electrocution and cross-circuit electrical jumps. 

Getting These Replacement Supplies

Most current transformer suppliers (i.e., suppliers of current transformers) have all of the above items in stock. You can order what you think you will need based on the basic pictures online or in the catalog. If you are not sure what to buy because some switches or transformers look far too much alike, talk to the sales rep to help you determine which of the two similar components are the best match for your needs.