What's involved in adding a 240V outlet?

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I believe I have a 200A electric service at my house.
If I want to add a 240V outlet in the garage (to power a high power electric pressure washer, or other tools), do I have to upgrade the panel or the service contract with the electric company? The machine draws 20 to 30A.
I'd hire an electrician to add the outlet but I want to know the code related issues beforehand.
It may be cheaper to buy a gas pressure washer but I don't like maintening gas engines. And regular 120V pressure washers are too weak.
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Go to your breaker panel and look at the breakers. You should see most of them a single slot wide. There will be around 2 to 4 that are 2 slots wide with a single handle. If you have 2 slots that just have the metel plate over them next to each other. That is either 2 on the left side or 2 on the right side. Then it will not be any problem. The electrician can just pop out the blank covers and add a breaker and run the wires. You should not have to do any upgrading of the service from the power company. If you add up all the breakers it will total way more than the 200 amp service you have, but unless something unusal hapens you will never have everything on at once.
To get an estimate of the cost (not counting the electrician) see how much wire it will take to get from the breaker to where you want the outlet. Remember you have to go up and down the walls and such. Then go to a store or online and look for that ammount of wire that has 2 or 3 conductors and a ground. You need to look at the price of atleast # 10 wire. Also look at a breaker, a receptical and a box to put it in.
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On Sat, 9 Nov 2013 20:59:14 -0500, "Ralph Mowery"

have a 120 volt component - so it needs 2 lines, plus neutral, plus the bare or green ground. That is red, black, white, plus bare or green. Then he needs to decide if 30 amps is all he will ever need, or if he needs a 50 amp connection for a welder . I like to put in a 50 amp 240 line, and then make a fused or breaker protected "downshift" adapter - 50 amp plug, breaker/fuse box, and 30 amp outlet.
The permanent connection is to code, and the adapter is safe - and not being a permanent connection, is not subject to the inspection process. Just make sure everything is done to the highest standards of workmanship.
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The real question is how hard it will be to get a wire from the garage to the panel. Is it an attached garage? That makes it a lot simpler, code wise.
I have a 240v/30a power washer and you are right. It is the real deal.
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On Sat, 09 Nov 2013 22:06:51 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Getting wire ELSEWHERE in the house is fun, as it needs to go up and across the garage ceiling (no opening to the crawlspace) and then in through the house/garage wall - which is ALL finished..... Inside and out. For the central vac I ran romex on the surface along the ceiling/wall junction, down the inside corner of the garage wall, and in through the sill into the basement where I had to remove accoustic ceiling tile to access the wire and direct it across toi the furnace room where the CV was installed.
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On Saturday, November 9, 2013 7:30:48 PM UTC-6, bob wrote:

Uh, portability?
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wrote:

I put a dryer plug on mine and I have a 50' and a 25' extension cord. With another 80' of hose I can get just about anywhere and everyone around here has a dryer.
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On 11/9/2013 10:43 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

The OP: Most of the time, it's no big deal to put in a new socket. Especially if the garage is near the panel, and if the garage is atached to the house. What's your use of pressure washer, right at the house? Washing your vinyl siding?
G: Thanks to the government, we now have three wire and four wire dryer sockets. Sigh.
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On Sun, 10 Nov 2013 05:59:21 -0500, Stormin Mormon

Anything recent will be 4 wire. 4 wire also allows you to make a splitter adapter to run multiple 120 volt circuits - put a fused disconnect or breaker subpanel and a couple of outlet boxes on a mini-panel-board to plug into your 4 wire 240 extension circuit.
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On Sun, 10 Nov 2013 05:59:21 -0500, Stormin Mormon

You just need one of these. A 4 wire dryer cord with a 3 wire receptacle on it.
http://gfretwell.com/ftp/dryer%20adapter.jpg
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On 11/10/2013 19:38, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Be aware that such an adapter violates the separation of the protective ground and neutral for a 120/240 volt appliance. If your pressure washer is a "pure" 240 volt device (not needing a neutral, just two hots and a protective ground), you can use an adapter with a 14-30 plug and 6-30 receptacle.
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A pressure washer is just a motor. There is no neutral load. Same with a welder.
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On 11/11/2013 12:00 AM, Bob wrote:

So, G provides a cord that allows one to plug a THREE wire device into a FOUR wire socket. That violates separation of powers.... how?
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On 11/11/2013 05:21 AM, Stormin Mormon wrote:
[snip]

It would if you connected BOTH ground and neutral to the third prong. You don't have to do that.
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On 11/11/2013 1:46 PM, sam E wrote:

Well, starting with a three wire AC (hot, hot, ground) and plugging into a three wire socket (hot, hot, ground). What neutral wire are you talking about? I've looked all over, and can't find one here.
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On 11/11/2013 01:42 PM, Stormin Mormon wrote:

No matter how many times I've looked, the question I replied to mentions a FOUR wire socket, which most likely includes neutral.
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On 11/10/2013 10:38 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

One time, I was repairing wall AC for an apartment complex. I made a dryer socket (three wire) to AC socket (three wire) pigtail. Of course, I did observe separation of power conductors. All the white neutral wires in the situation were properly handled, safely.
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On 11/10/13 05:59 am, Stormin Mormon wrote:

Our old house had a hard-wired dryer, so when we replaced the dryer we had a 4-wire outlet installed. the house to which we moved -- where we live now -- has a 3-wire socket , so I replace the 4-wire cord on the dryer by a 3-wire cord and made whatever change was required at the dryer end; forget the details now.
Is it OK (Code compliant) simply to run a separate ground conductor alongside the existing 3-conductor Romex and replace the 3-wire outlet by a 4-wire outlet and reinstall the 4-wire cord on the dryer and change the connections on the dryer end back again? Or would I have to replace the 3-conductor Romex by 4-conductor?
Perce
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On Sun, 10 Nov 2013 22:56:16 -0500, "Percival P. Cassidy"

What does it say on the jacket? If it was legally wired using romex there is going to be a ground in there most of the time. Typically they used 10/3 wg since this is a neutral used as a ground, not a ground. It should be a white wire. The ground wire may be tied to the box or simply cut off. If it is wired with SE cable, there will not be an extra wire.
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On Sunday, November 10, 2013 11:32:33 PM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

No, it's not. Because it's not ok for you to use the existing ground line as a neutral plus it's not ok for you to run single conductor outside of a conduit.
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