I wonder if the following question should be considered off topic for this site:


When we talk DIY we are generally talking about residential applications. Sure the argument can be made too that small scale commercial problems can be considered part of that too, but Do It Yourself should primarily be a site about amateur and professional contractor Q&A residential and home improvement problems.

Sure we can say that in the question above, certainly some eastern European countries operate on three phase for residential, however the OP makes no effort to demonstrate a real problem that he/she is trying to solve. It is nothing more than a request for imformation that is more suitably found on Wikipedia.

We have a lot of really smart electrical guys in the community, but just because we may know the answer, does it really belong here?

3 Answers 3


I agree that this is not related to home improvement. I have closed the question.


Maybe I doomed this question by changing the title? I think at its heart, the question is about residential voltages and frequencies, and the differences throughout the world. For example, in North America 120/240V 60Hz split-phase power is common. Whereas in Europe, 230V 50Hz single-phase is popular (I think).

You may read the question and picture power stations, substations, transmission lines, transformers, and transmission poles. In reality the question is more focused on the service drop, and the characteristics of the electricity that enters the home. For people asking questions; and certainly for those answering, it may be important to be aware of the differences from one place to another. Personally, I can see how it could be home improvement related.

However, since there is already a pretty thorough list on WikiPedia. It's probably not worth the effort to reproduce the list here, so I agree this question should be closed.

  • It certainly could be DIY related and it is helpful for any amateur electrician and Do It Yourselfer to know, but still there is no real context of a problem here. For all we know it could be somebodies homework. Feb 5, 2013 at 14:33
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    @maple_shaft We don't just solve problems, we teach. The "contextual fluff" of a question body is just that, fluff. It helps us relate to the problem, and maybe provides a bit more insight, while making the question a bit more readable (sometimes). But if you answer every specific question with a specific answer, I think you're missing the point. Answers should be much more than just answers. They should be useful to the billions of potential readers, not just the asker.
    – Tester101
    Feb 11, 2013 at 16:20

In fact this question was motivated by comments to my other question. They showed some people who doubted 3-phase is being used in homes (instead of answering the question).

I like the Tester101's comment about teaching people - that's the main reason of existence of SE. Teaching someone something is more than just solving his problem. But how to fit it into a Q&A format?

I considered to delete the question but I think it's in fact answered by the wikipedia link provided and could be useful.

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