Old Stove and Old Wire


Old 09-15-04, 08:31 AM
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Old Stove and Old Wire

The other day the stove wasn't working so my roommate pulled it out and realized that some wires had come loose. He wired it back up and pushed it back into place. The next day I was doing dishes and as I touched the SS sink and touched a pot on the stove I got a nasty shock. I discovered that something was wrong with the electical of the stove. After removing the back panel I was surprised to see that a lot of the wire had melted. I stripped new ends and I'm ready to rewire it, however, the wire is so old that I'm not familiar with it. For example, they are very thick and there is a nylon mesh insulating the wire. Here's the tricky part, one wire is a definite black, the other two are very similar in color. One is a slightly lighter shade of brown. I do not know which is ground, positive, or negative. In addition, the mounting post that had the black cable attached with another think black cable has melted off. I am assuming that this is the ground. So, since the mounting post cannot be used, can I link the two black wires (thick and thin) to an additional copper wire that will be ground to a bolt on the stove? Also, which color do I use for positive?

Thank you!
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Old 09-15-04, 09:45 AM
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Is this defective appliance located in an owner-occupied dwelling-unit?

The question pertains to the party responsible for maintaining the electrical system and necesary appliances in a safe & secure condition.
Old 09-15-04, 10:04 AM
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There is no such thing as positive and negative when discussing alternating current.

With a 240 volt appliance there are two hot wires plus either a one neutral/ground wire or separate neutral and ground wires. The two hot wires carry 120 volts each.

Youmust determine which wires are which. Do this with a voltmeter. Do not guess.

However, before going any further, make sure that the breaker and the wire are correct for the stove. The wrong breaker and/or the wrong wire size and/or a problem with the stove or the wiring caused the wires to overheat and melt.

The stove will have a nameplate indicating the wire size and the breaker required. Make sure that the wire is at least the recommended size or larger and that the breaker is the correct size. If the breaker and/or the wire are the wrong size for the stove then do not use them. Run the proper size wire and use the correct size breaker. Also, if the wire has become brittle and/or is failing in some other way then replace it.

A problem like this could easily kill you and/or could burn the house down. Do not take chances. If you are over your head and either cannot or will not properly investigate and correct these problems, then get professional help. Also, as weas stated, if this is rental property then your landlord is responsible for fixing this.
Old 09-15-04, 08:23 PM
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I am the owner and was interested in doing it myself. If I can't then I will contact an electrician. As for the wiring, I have done further research and now I realize what is necessary to connect them properly. Furthermore, my only final question is this: Is the terminal block necessary for transferring current/signal or is it just a housing unit to support the wire in place? If so, is it okay to just tape down the piece that has lost it's contact?

By the way, the power is turned off and as it is an existing stove with wire everything is original and correct.

Thanks again!
Old 09-16-04, 07:47 AM
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The terminal block should be replaced with a matching part. Check with the stove manufacturer to obtain one. Tape is absolutely not an acceptable electrical connector. You are dealing with a component responsible for distribution of a high amount of electricity. A "jerry-rigged" solution compromises safety, as you have already discovered. You were lucky once. Next time you could loose your house or your life. Please replace all the damaged parts with correct new ones and make all connections as they were originally designed.

Doug M.
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