How do you measure power factor and what do you measure it with. Is there some type of hand held meter that can be used to measure watts as I am told this is really what you are looking for and trying to reduce?
The power factor question is related to a Rotary Phase Converter. I am trying to reduce the converters power consumption to the least possible amount. I just wanted to know how to measure the power draw from the two single phase legs on the input side so that is necessary I can add capacitance between these two legs to get the power factor closer to 0.9. Everything that I have been read is that a Rotary Phase Converter produces a bad power factor.
Re: How to Measure Power Factor#68735 08/16/0609:14 AM08/16/0609:14 AM
First of all...the "Kill-a-watt" is sold in the ECN store!
Power factor, simply put, is the difference between "watts" and "kva."
If you have a steady load, you can get a good idea by comparing the meter reading to whay you get when you measure volts, measure amps, and multiply the result. This is one of those times you want to have "true RMS' type meters!
Re: How to Measure Power Factor#68736 08/16/0609:50 AM08/16/0609:50 AM
Reno is quite right here. Power factor is the ratio of useful power(VxI) to useless (Wattless) power in a circuit or even an entire installation. To a degree, the lower the wattless component, the higher the power factor. It is about using the most from what you have supplied to you. We had a dedicated PF meter at the PoCo, but I can't at this moment remember how it was wired. What's even more scary, is the fact that I built the thing in the first place.