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Powering a washing machine solenoid?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by twiglet123, Apr 20, 2013.

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  1. twiglet123

    twiglet123

    6
    0
    Dec 30, 2012
    Hello all, I recently found an old solenoid for a washing machine pretty similar to this one

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SINGLE-In...yers_Parts_Accessories_ET&hash=item5acfc9780a

    lying around and thought I might try and use it as part of a small project I've been working on,
    My question is could I power this from a dc 12v motorbike lead acid battery?

    I've never really worked with solenoids before and my analogue electronics isn't fantastic so be gentle but the information on it is that it is 230v, 50/60hz and 8VA.
    I’m assuming 230v at 50/60hz will be my main hurdle as I assume the 50/60hz means this runs on AC so I’ll have to do something like either connect it to an inverter or replace or modify the solenoid, (I’m not sure how different the coil on an ac solenoid would be different to a dc one?)
    Then of course I will have to bring the voltage up with resistors or at least so I’m told.

    Either way peoples thoughts would be much appreciated whether it can be done or if it would be better just to get a powerful servo and a ball valve and forget about this idea.

    Thanks in advance
    twiglet
     
  2. twiglet123

    twiglet123

    6
    0
    Dec 30, 2012
    After doing some research it looks like it is possible to power an ac solenoid with dc but you need a capacitor to give the solenoid an initial boost to get it moving has anyone tried this?
     
  3. duke37

    duke37

    5,364
    771
    Jan 9, 2011
    You can power an AC solenoid with DC and in fact, you will need less voltage, perhaps half the AC value.

    You can dismantle the solenoid if you have a big enough hammer and rewind with fewer turns of thicker wire to use a lower voltage..

    You could get a solenoid to run off 12V.
     
  4. twiglet123

    twiglet123

    6
    0
    Dec 30, 2012
    Cheers are there any ways of building a simple circuit to power this as opposed to taking the solenoid apart?

    I can modify the solenoid if I really must but I'd prefer to build a circuit if possible.
     
  5. duke37

    duke37

    5,364
    771
    Jan 9, 2011
    You can get invertors to run on 12V and give out 50Hz AC (UK).
    You can get boost convertors to give out higher voltage DC
    You can make a boost convertor with a few components a chip and a couple of fets. The transformer will be the problem. I use old cores from TV line output transformers but pot cores can be used.

    If you use AC, then you must use 50Hz (or 60Hz ,US)
    If use use DC, then you will need to determine the voltage and current consumed.
     
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