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The effects of high or low voltage on the performance of a motor

Publication date: 
August 2000
Author(s): 
Cyndi Nyberg Esau, Former EASA Technical Support Specialist
Type of media: 
Article

There is usually no problem with frequency variation, unless we get into operating at 50 Hz, but that would be an article all by itself, so the focus here will be on voltage variation only. Even though NEMA states that motors are designed to operate within 10 percent of rated voltage, that doesn't give an accurate picture of what will happen when a motor is operated with high or low voltage. Any change from the rated voltage and frequency will affect the performance of the motor, sometimes dramatically.

Topic(s): 
Design/theory/application
Troubleshooting & failure analysis