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Residential, lite comm., Industrial
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Hey guys, I suck at algebra. How important is it? Is there a way around it?
You will always need it for tests and such. For everyday you memorize the important stuff. If you are in school i doubt you can get around it, talk to the teacher for suggestions
 

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Retired EC
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I don't think algebra is that important. Sometimes, depending on what job you are doing you may need some basic math like dividing etc...

I would not give up learning the trade because of algebra.

A x 24 = 48 what is A=? hahahaha
 

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You use it every day.
You just don't realize it because you're not understanding the way in which it's been taught to you.

Visit Khan Academy.
In 5 minutes you'll start to understand it.
 

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Estwing magic
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26,372 Posts
Trust me, you don’t suck at math, you just think you suck at math. You’re not solving complex problems in this trade. If you put math in a different context, say with money, you would realize you know it already.

You need to learn trigonometry for electrical theory and that’s easy to learn.

Sorry, but saying you suck at math means you have given up on yourself. That’s not cool.
 

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Hey guys, I suck at algebra. How important is it? Is there a way around it?
Are you working in the union or are you working for a ma and pa shop
 

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Registered
Wisconsin licensed master electrician and general contractor
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245 Posts
Basic arithmetic is crucial. Maybe not for an apprentice or helper, but when you start getting into design, you need to know the basics. Ohm's law, Watt's law, etc.

For example, how many 100 watt light fixtures can I put on a 20 amp circuit?

Another example: I give you a water heater element. It has the markings: 1500W 480 VAC. Using your ohmmeter, tell me if the resistance reading is correct.

Sent from my BE2028 using Tapatalk
 

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Moderator
Estwing magic
Joined
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26,372 Posts
Basic arithmetic is crucial. Maybe not for an apprentice or helper, but when you start getting into design, you need to know the basics. Ohm's law, Watt's law, etc.

For example, how many 100 watt light fixtures can I put on a 20 amp circuit?

Another example: I give you a water heater element. It has the markings: 1500W 480 VAC. Using your ohmmeter, tell me if the resistance reading is correct.

Sent from my BE2028 using Tapatalk
You have five dollars. Doughnuts cost $1.25 each. How many doughnuts can you buy?
 

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Bilge Rat
motors and controls.........
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8,460 Posts
I did poorly in algebra in school but understood geometry pretty good.

I do a considerable amount of design work as well as installation and my lack of algebraic knowledge hasn't hurt me though I do use geometry at times, especially bending pipe.

Algebra needs to be defined though, is it something like 2+5=X or is it more like 2(50÷1.73)-22.5(13.33X37.348)+18.973Z÷1.414 solve for Z.

If it's the former, every one of us uses it all the time but there's no need to understand the latter.
 

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I did poorly in algebra in school but understood geometry pretty good.

I do a considerable amount of design work as well as installation and my lack of algebraic knowledge hasn't hurt me though I do use geometry at times, especially bending pipe.

Algebra needs to be defined though, is it something like 2+5=X or is it more like 2(50÷1.73)-22.5(13.33X37.348)+18.973Z÷1.414 solve for Z.

If it's the former, every one of us uses it all the time but there's no need to understand the latter.
You need an equal sign in your second equation.

But what algebra is, is discovering the answer when an equation has an unknown variable.

How many donuts can I afford today? They're $1.25 each and I have $5.00. The unknown is the number of donuts.
Solved algebraically that's 1.25X = 5.
Isolate the X using the rule that says we can do anything we want to one side of an equation as long as we do it to both sides of the equation, so we set it up as 1.25X/1.25 = 5/1.25
Cancel the 1.25's on the left side (because 1.25/1.25 = 1) so we have X = 5/1.25
5/1.25 = 4.
You can buy 4 donuts.

Written out it would be easier to understand then when typed.
It's easier to see how the fractions cancel.
 

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Registered
Wisconsin licensed master electrician and general contractor
Joined
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245 Posts
I did poorly in algebra in school but understood geometry pretty good.

I do a considerable amount of design work as well as installation and my lack of algebraic knowledge hasn't hurt me though I do use geometry at times, especially bending pipe.

Algebra needs to be defined though, is it something like 2+5=X or is it more like 2(50÷1.73)-22.5(13.33X37.348)+18.973Z÷1.414 solve for Z.

If it's the former, every one of us uses it all the time but there's no need to understand the latter.
Right. Only a rudimentary understanding of algebra is needed. We don't need to get into complex numbers and Fourier transforms.

Sent from my BE2028 using Tapatalk
 
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