The Difference Between Rated Voltage vs. Operating Voltage

by | Mar 7, 2022 | Blog

Learning about maximum and minimum voltage ranges can be very beneficial. These voltages are referred to as rated voltage and operating voltage. Educate yourself on how these voltage ranges are named, also known as their nominal voltage. Gain a better understanding of the devices you own and how their voltage works by exploring the difference between rated and operating voltage.

Rated Voltage

Rated voltage is the maximum voltage that a device can operate at safely. This term may also be defined as tolerance rate. Tolerance is communicated in percentage. The tolerance shows the minimum and maximum range for a device. For example, a rated voltage of a device with 100v has a tolerance of 10 percent. This means the maximum will be 110v, and the minimum would be 90v. A device such as a solid-state frequency converter or a rotary frequency converter must be operated in a specific range.

Operating Voltage

The operating voltage is just that—the voltage that is used while the device is operated. In normal operating conditions, the device is operated in its rated voltage range. A voltage that is higher or lower than the rated voltage can cause damage to the device. Operating voltage is the amount of voltage used at a specific instant in time. It is the immediate voltage that is measured with a voltmeter. Household appliances like a fan, TV, or fridge are operated at the range of 220 nominal. Operating voltage ranges from 118.8 to 145.2 Kv.

Nominal Voltage

Nominal voltage is the level of electrical power in a system. This voltage usually ranges between 440 V and 756kV. Nominal voltage is a crucial part of voltage systems because it builds the foundation upon which we can communicate about voltage systems. It indicates the standard and foundational nominal voltage at which something was installed. In turn, it tells us what range the system best operates in.

Look at the electronic devices around you and appreciate their inner workings and systems. Remember these differences between rated voltage vs. operating voltage. It’s crucial that devices do not exceed their maximum voltage so that they may operate safely. The current voltage they are operated at is called the operating voltage, while the total amount of voltage they can manage is called the nominal voltage. All three voltage types are essential to a healthy operating system.