The Difference Between Watts, Volts, and Ohms
Knowing the difference between watts and volts, as well as amps (amps) and ohms, is critical when working with any type of electrical system.
Home wiring repair requires a solid understanding of electrical terms and is even a useful knowledge base to have in everyday life.
How many times have you seen a light bulb printed with "100W / 120V" and wondered how the two electrical units are related? Can the two be used interchangeably? Before looking at the differences, it helps to start with the basic definitions.
Watts, volts, amps, and ohms definitions
Electrical terms and definitions, such as watts and volts, are defined by a system called SI (International System of Units).
An international intergovernmental agency called BIPM (Bureau International des Poids et Measures) establishes terms and definitions for weights and measures under this system.
More than one hundred countries are members or associates of BIPM.
The hydraulic (water) analogy is a common method of explaining electrical terms. The flow of water in a pipe or in a closed system circuit is compared to the electrical flow.
As with closed system tubes, electricity must move in a continuous (or circular) circuit to function.
What are volts?
One volt, according to the BIPM, represents the "potential difference between two points in a conductive wire carrying a constant current of 1 ampere when the power dissipated between these points is equal to 1 watt." The symbol for volt is "V."
Simply put, this means that the voltage, compared to the pressure of the water in the tubes, is the speed of the electrons as they pass through a point within the circuit.
Good to know
Like watts, a word derived from the English inventor James Watt, volts got its name from another inventor, the Italian Alessandro Volta. Volta invented a precursor to the electric battery.
What are amplifiers?
With amps (short for amps), the official definition of the SI is not only heavy but constantly changing. His overall drive, however, never changes.
Amps are the basic unit that measures the volume of electrons in the electrical circuit. The capital letter "A" is the symbol for amplifiers or amplifiers.
With the hydraulic comparison, the amps would be a unit of measurement that indicates the volume of water that passes through a certain point. Volume is quantity, not speed. Lightning has approximately 20,000 amps.
A watch can consume one-millionth of an amplifier. Household electrical cords are typically rated at 15 amps or 20 amps.
What are watts?
One watt describes the rate of energy flow. When an ampere flows through an electrical difference of one volt, its result is expressed in terms of watts. "W" is the symbol for watts or watts.
Watts are derived from the formula V x A = W.
- EASY TIP: Think in watts, not in terms of power or capacity, but speed or speed. The flow of water through a garden hose or the speed of a vehicle is a good analogy for watts.
What are ohms?
The basic unit ohm is the SI term that indicates electrical resistance. Ohm is a measure of the resistance to which a device or material placed within an electrical circuit resists or reduces electrical flow.
The Greek symbol for omega, similar to a descending horseshoe, is also the symbol for ohms.
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