4 prong dryer cord, 3 prong receptacle

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  #1  
Old 06-07-07, 01:17 PM
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4 prong dryer cord, 3 prong receptacle

My house has a 3 prong dryer receptacle. The dryer has a 4 prong cord (The diagram on the back states that it originally came with a 3prong cord but whoever put the 4prong cord on it removed the ground strap entirely). I have purchased the 3 prong cord and connected it, but I have not plugged the dryer in yet because the ground strap is missing. I purchased an 8 #12 awg green ground pigtail to use as a grounding strap. All documentation online I have seen states that the green wire may be used as a ground strap. However, online documentation (that I could find) states that 10awg is required for a dryer. Can 12awg be used?

(I popped the circuit breaker and loosened the receptable to verify there really are only 3 wires run from the breaker box to the receptacle which is why I am replacing the cord on the dryer and not the receptacle)

Thanks,

Tracy
 
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  #2  
Old 06-07-07, 01:39 PM
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You're on the right track. To meet code, the ground wire/strap on the dryer should be #10 and not #12. The ground should be connected to the dryer frame by way of a tapped screw; ideally the same one that the grounding strap attached to originally.
 
  #3  
Old 06-07-07, 01:48 PM
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Thanks for your reply.

The original grounding strap is no longer attached so I have to purchase a new one. There were no #10 grounding wires available at Home Depot or Lowes so I had to purchase a #12. Are you stating that #12 is not sufficient to be used as a grounding strap on a dryer and I should not use it?
 
  #4  
Old 06-07-07, 01:54 PM
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In my personal opinion, the #12 is sufficient for a ground strap; however the electrical code requires that the ground wire for 30A dryer circuits be #10. Home depot should be able to sell you a 1 foot piece of green #10 wire for about 30 cents.
 
  #5  
Old 06-07-07, 02:22 PM
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But then I would have to put the connectors on myself. Wonder if two 12 awg pigtail cables would suffice? Probably not, since the surge may only go down one and not both?
 
  #6  
Old 06-07-07, 03:18 PM
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I agree that the #12 is electrically sound, even though it does not meet the Code. If you used two, and both were connected well, you would have even more protection than a single #10, and probably still wouldn't meet the Code.

The pigtail does not need to a be a purposely designed unit sold as a pigtail. A scrap piece of #10 that is connected soundly to the screws would meet the Code.
 
  #7  
Old 06-07-07, 04:19 PM
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Thanks all! I ordered a ground strap from GE. 75 cents but won't arrive for 7-10 days. I will use BOTH 12awg ground cables until then.
 
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