What’s The Difference Between Contactor And Relay?
Contactors and relays are types of electrical switches that can control and switch loads.
However, they have some differences in structure, functionality, and application.
Here are some of the key differences between them: – The contactor is designed to switch high voltage and high current loads such as motors, capacitors, lights, ballasts, etc.
The A relay is suitable for switching low voltage and low current loads such as control circuits, small electronic devices, etc.¹².
– A contactor typically has normally open (NO) contacts only, meaning the circuit is closed when the contactor is energized.
The relay can have normally open (NO) and normally closed (NC) contacts, meaning the circuit can be closed or opened when the relay is energized².
– The contactor is often equipped with additional auxiliary contacts that trip at the same time as the main contacts.
These auxiliary contacts can be used to carry out additional contactor control functions, e.g. B. lighting up an indicator or interlocking with another contactor¹².
– The contactor is equipped with some protection devices that prevent or limit the effects of arcing, i.e. H. the formation of electrical discharges between the contacts when opening or closing.
These features include spring-loaded contacts that provide quick and smooth contact separation, and arc suppression devices that extend the arc path and reduce arc intensity².
– A contactor is generally used in three-phase applications where it can switch all three phases simultaneously. The relay is most commonly used in single-phase applications where it can switch one or two poles²⁴.