Electronics > Beginners

Using a Variac Safety concern

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veryworried:
Hi, I am using a variac to control my fan as it's too loud at night.  If I use an RCD device will that protect me if there is a fault?

Thanks.

Per Hansson:
Yes, a normal variac offers no isolation at all, it is basically works like a large resistor (or better rheostat) so your RCD will work fine!
P.S: There are isolating variacs too (they work like a normal transformer) but they are not the norm when you speak of a "variac"

veryworried:
Yes I've read about the isolation ones and lots of conflicting articles about it.  I think mine is just a standard variac with the copper windings and brush.  It is a stand alone unit that's plug and play no wiring necessary.

Thanks for your expertise on the subject.

metrologist:
I was looking for illustrations that show how variac is dangerous but did not find them. Sometimes I don't see the issue, like in this case, as long as things are wired properly.

CaptDon:
Actually works more like an autotransformer with a variable tap position.

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