I'm new to this but I have been doing a little reading. Anyway, the
new house I purchased has a 30A line going to our kitchen for a stove.
We removed the electric stove to replace it with gas. I now want to
use the existing line to provide power for outlets in my basement. I
have some plans and questions and I was wondering if anyone can
comment on them.
The circuit breaker in the box is a 30A 2-pole unit. I believe the
stove ran on 120V. The wire that is connected to the 30A fuse is an
8-gage aluminum 3-wire configuration IIRC. Here are my plans…please
let me know what you think:
I plan on pulling the 30A 2-pole breaker and replacing it with a 20A
2-pole breaker. I chose the 20A because I thought 30A was too much
for my expected usage and I could not find standard wall plugs at the
hardware store that are rated for 30A. I think 20A should be plenty
for the outlets in my basements (plus, lights are on different
breakers). Do I need a 2-pole breaker? The only reason I selected a
2-pole is because it fits in the same physical space as the old 30A
breaker. What would determine if I need 2-poles vs. 1-pole?
Once the breaker is installed, I plan on using the existing 8-gage
wire coming out of the fuse box and running it to a smaller box
somewhere in my basement that I can create the ring circuit off of.
When I'm creating the ring circuit, does the ‘return' line of the ring
come back to the fuse box or to the smaller box where the ‘new' wiring
If there are any big problems or things I should look out for in my
plan, I will gladly accept any input….
I'm doing that right here right now. :-) Thanks for your feedback.
I just was browsing on the web and that info about the ring circuit
was on a UK website. I didn't know they do it differently over there.
Before I do ANYTHING, I will definitely get a real book from around
here and get fully educated.
Can I get more of an explanation about the stove being a higher
voltage than I thought? The manual is here:
and gave me the impression that it was 120v.
Again, thanks to you all for your input. I really apprecaite it!
On 1 Jun 2004 14:14:09 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org (Clocker) wrote:
Read and it says it requires 208 or 240v system.
Get you a voltmeter and check the voltage between each of the
terminals and you will see that you have 220 volts between each of the
main wires and the other (green) wire is a ground. Your breaker box
will have a big breaker for this circuit and you must redo that if you
want to use those circuits for other purposes.
Like others are saying, proceed with caution. From your posts, it seems
like you don't have a full understanding of what's going on, and amateur
electrical work can be dangerous. But, you're doing the right thing by
researching the subject before acting, and you may learn enough to feel
comfortable with the project. Definitely research local codes, and
before you do anything, find out what the inspection requirements are.
You may well find that this is something worth bringing in a pro for.
That all said, this is my own amateur-with-some-rewiring-experience
The "two pole breaker" you refer to is actually a pair of 120 V breakers
physically linked to trip together. The breakers are on opposite phases
of the power, so that the potential between them is 240 V (or whatever
it comes to in your neck of the woods, typically anywhere between 208-
So, considering the hot leads only, there wouldn't be a problem
replacing the two linked breakers with 2 separate 15 or 20 Amp circuits,
as 8-gauge wire can handle plenty of Amps.
But, you mentioned it's a 3-wire circuit, meaning two hot wires plus a
single neutral (plus a ground, right?). So, if you have separate
circuits, you'll need to pull another neutral and another ground wire,
so that each of the two "new" circuits will have an independent neutral
and ground dedicated to it. In practice it's often more practical to
just abandon the old wiring and pull fresh 12-gauge wire to the desired
locations. Leave the old wire in the walls; maybe one day it will come
In my experience, adding a 20 A circuit is a snap if you have the
ability / access to pull the wire to where it's needed. Read up on local
requirements and get a book about appropriate wiring practices.
Good luck. Let us know how it goes.
Stop right there.
The stove is _both_ 240V and 120V. It measures 240V between the two
poles of the breaker, and 120V between each breaker and neutral.
I really think you need to do more reading, specifically in an electrical
wiring book that discusses 240V circuits, 120V circuits, and stoves.
At the level of understanding you're showing in this posting, you're
likely to burn your house down.
Not legal in any event.
Oh my. No.
Ring circuits are for the UK. You don't want to do ring circuits here.
Indeed, if you tried to "ring" the two halves of that breaker pair,
you'll have a very very _big_ bang. (dead short of 240V). Which
could do serious damage to your entire electrical system.
You really don't want to reuse the 8ga aluminum. Aluminum
can be hazardous if not installed/terminated properly (anti-oxidant
If you have some empty slots in your panel, you'd be better off running
completely new "ordinary" 120V 15A or 20A circuits off them (with
12ga copper), and leave the stove wiring _completely_ alone.
If you MUST reuse the stove panel slot, then, pull the panel-end of the
8ga out, leave the rest of the old stove circuit alone. Then,
put in a 20A breaker and 12ga copper wire to form a new circuit. Do
a second one if you wish.
But read more first. Please.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
The 8-gauge copper would be OK for a 30A 120v. circuit. If it were my
basement, I would abandon the aluminum wiring, install a 40A 2-pole
breaker, pull new 8/3 w/ground copper to a 60A sub-panel and pull a
couple 20A 120v receptacle circuits and a 15A lighting circuit from
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