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Replacing a 30A 240v receptacle and breaker with a 20A receptacle and breaker.

Replacing a 30A 240v receptacle and breaker with a 20A receptacle and breaker.

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Old 08-17-12, 12:11 PM
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Replacing a 30A 240v receptacle and breaker with a 20A receptacle and breaker.

I am in no way a trained electrician, I am simply going off the research I have done and the basic knowledge given to me by my father growing up.

I am rebuilding part of our laundry room and would like to put in a 20A 240v outlet to run a few small appliances I have from my time in Europe. There is a 30A 240v receptacle on a dedicated breaker, but the previous tenants have painted over it, rendering it useless. It is a 3 wire, 240v outlet (shown in attached pictures). I need to replace it with a Nema 6-20R like this for my appliances.[ATTACH=CONFIG]2684[/ATTACH]

After reading on other forums, I've found out that you don't want to run a 20A outlet on a 30A line (somewhere I read said you could as long as your wattage was under 5k, but I'm not about to gamble with a fire) due to safety and fire codes, so now I need to replace both the outlet and the breaker, correct? Or do I need to replace the entire line, due to differences in wire sizes used in installation?
 
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Old 08-17-12, 12:17 PM
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Not as simple as it seems, especially if they have motors. Pure resistance devices might work but the motors are 50 Hz and the US power supply is 60Hz. See: Motors: Changing between a 50 and 60Hz supply. - Electric motors, generators & controls engineering FAQ - Eng-Tips

And that is not even touching the issue of grounded conductor which is not present on a US 240v circuit but is on a European circuit.
 
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Old 08-17-12, 12:19 PM
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You said "previous tenants" - are you a tenant? If so, don't do anything, you need to talk to the landlord.
 
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