I have a 13 inch planer molder made by Jet. Itís wired for 115v. I have a 15amp breaker which trips constantly. Iím only lowering the blade by about 1/4 turn and it still trips. This doesnít seem right because I used to have a 12 inch portable Delta that never tripped, even when taking a big pass. Can anyone help?
(Furniture Making Forum)
From contributor K:
That planer pulls too much current for a 15 amp breaker. You need 12 gauge wire running to it on a 20 amp breaker.
Itís not really a lot of difference between a cord and wires in the wall when you have the right size wire. Also if your motor is only 15A then you could just have a bad breaker.
A typical 115 volt receptacle is not rated for more than 15 amps. To simply replace a 15 amp breaker with a 20 amp breaker is (technically) not a good idea. To get a true 20 amp, 115 volt circuit, you should go to what is commonly referred to as an "RV plug". (Again technically-speaking) you also need to change the plug on the end of your power cord. When diagnosing such problems, always check the simple things first - always! I never miss an opportunity to write that down as it helps me remember to practice what I preach!
The preferred method of bragging about how powerful a tool is to point out the current draw of the motor. This is purely a marketing gimmick (and I believe to be blatantly false and misleading advertising).
Doing the same amount of work, a high quality motor will draw less amperage than a low quality motor. Being driven by a deception-oriented marketing department (and based on a false pretense), a manufacturer can actually benefit by building an inferior motor. Their only motivation then is to keep the current draw of the tool compatible with a typical 115 volt, 15 amp circuit.
Your planer is what it is - you need to determine whether or not you are supplying adequate voltage and amperage to the motor - and if not, why.
The important thing to know is you canít just go from 110 to 220. There is some rewiring in the motor you would have to do to make this possible. Another thing to keep in mind after you make sure the blades are sharp and in the right way is to listen to the motor when you start it. Don't try cutting anything until the motor is at full speed. Motors always draw more than their full load current when starting so any additional load at this point would for sure blow any breaker you try to use. Never change a breaker to a bigger sized breaker just to keep it from tripping. They trip for a reason and the wire probably isn't rated for the bigger breaker.