Absolutely right Doug! If you do it that way you will have issues
with the 3-wire vs. the 4-wire plugs. Think about it for a while!
That Safety Ground is supposed to come to the 4 wire plug. That is
the only place it is supposed to go. If you've got the 4 wire
receptacle and it is grounded, then the Neutral is properly lifted and
no longer serves as the case safety ground.
What you are talking about is a hard-wire non-standard installation.
Maybe it will work, maybe not... If you house burns down, your
insurance might not pay if they discover your "non-code" compliant
installation. If you sell your house along with the laundry
equipment to a new owner, they are not going to have a clue what you
did and you place them in danger also.
If you want to add an Equipment Grounding Conductor (EGC) to the dryer
circuit you will need to run a fourth conductor in that circuit. If you
try to use an EGC from another circuit then that EGC will not be large
enough to cause the dryer circuits Over Current Protective Device (OCPD)
to open quickly and you risk cross connecting the dryer circuits neutral
to the laundry receptacle circuits EGC. That would cause neutral
current to divide over the two parallel paths and it could raise the
touch potential of the laundry equipment to dangerous levels.
"This alternating current stuff is just a fad. It is much too dangerous
A 3 prong dryer meets code and the neutral is connected to the
case...thats the root cause of the problem, they never should have
allowed that, but they did and there are many dryers out there like
that and IMO it is unsafe. ....
IMO it is unsafe because an OPEN neutral fault can put dangerous
voltage on the dryer case. So even though it meets code it is unsafe
...that is the reason for the so called hard wired ground.....
I don't see how connecting the CASE of an appliance to GROUND can be
considered a problem, if anything it only makes the situation safer,
the problem is that neutral is also connected to the case which is what
the code stupidly allowed...
Mabe the right answer is to modify the dryer to disconnect neutral from
the case and then run a seperate ground for the case.
I'm curious, has there ever been a intance of a person electrocuted due
to an open neutral in a 3 prong appliance like this?
This is exactly what the 4 wire appliance cords do when they are
connected this way and is considered the safest and most up-to-date
But if you have a 4 wire plug, you need a four-wire receptacle with
the two hots, neutral, and safety ground running back to the service
panel. If there are only three wires here because you have the older
type installation, then you are one wire short and will have a problem
unless you upgrade the wiring.
Some have suggested "customizing" this arrangement by running a
separate external ground from the frame of the dryer to some other
grounded point (possibly the 120 V. junction box for the washer).
I am not aware of any section of the code that allows this. It
defeats the concept of completely disconnecting the appliance from the
wall with just the plug and I imagine that it could possilby lead to
other problems as well.
There are many examples of 240 Volt circuits with no neutral and a
safety ground. These are typically used in the workshop for heavy
duty drills presses, lathes, and other power tools. These are
perfectly safe and meet the code requirements.
(in the US at least), you can't
On Mon, 15 May 2006 15:30:01 GMT, firstname.lastname@example.org (Beachcomber)
Yes, that would make it harder to disconnect it. How about putting a
4-wire cord on the dryer (properly, not forgetting to remove the
ground-neutral jumper), replacing the receptacle, and connecting it's
ground to the ground wire on the 120V receptacle?
Sorry if I sound to be on the same note over and over again on this.
Electrically, what you propose should work, although it is not code.
I have a friend whose house is wired with all white wires. Does it
work? Yes... but God help the electrician who has to deal with that
when adding outlets or upgrading circuits.
My brother bought a building where the electrical junctions were
behind holes in the plasterboard. No junction boxes... just single
insulated wires twisted together with wire nuts and plastered over.
(This was not knob and tube wiring by the way - which would have been
Does it work? Yes, but after attempting any electrical work on this
house you might just decide that blowing your brains out is a better
You might be in your house for 10, 20, 30 years. You might die there
but your non-code dryer installation will live on and someone who
doesn't know what you did is going to be exposed to the consequences
of what you did (should they need to replace the dryer).
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.