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Old 09-13-2011, 07:19 AM   #1
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Dishwasher Power Supply


Question:
So anyways, I have a 120v, 9.6 amps (total, 2.7amp motor) dishwasher that I'm installing on a 20 amp breaker. The guy at the hardware store sold me a 16 gauge power supply cord rated for 13 amps and 125 volts. Will this be OK?

Background:
So this seems pretty straightforward, right? Power cord for a dishwasher. No problem! Go to Home Depot, ask them for a power supply cord for a dishwasher, they give me a 14 gauge power cord. Cool. Get home, find that the plug sticks out too much and the dishwasher won't fit like that. So I decide to get a power supply cord with the 90 degree angled plug. Go to another store that says on the phone that they have these, and they give me a 16 gauge power supply cord. Get on the phone with whirlpool, they tell me 'buy our power supply cord'. I say 'no, I want one that has the 90 degree angle, all I need to know is the specifics about this piece'. Then the guy on the phone from whirlpool says I need at least 12 gauge power supply and I have to switch the breaker out from a 20 amp breaker to a 15 amp breaker.

I'm thinking are you kidding me? How can it be this f'n difficult to get an answer on something so seemingly straightforward?


Also if anyone knows a website where they explain how electricity works can they point it out to me? I mean like electricity in the context of why you can't use certain light bulbs in some outlets or the light catches on fire, etc. Basic stuff people should know but I don't.

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Old 09-13-2011, 07:37 AM   #2
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Dishwasher Power Supply


You ain't gonna like this answer.

NEC

422.16(B)(2) Built-in Dishwashers and Trash Compactors.
Built-in dishwashers and trash compactors shall be permitted
to be cord-and-plug-connected with a flexible cord
identified as suitable for the purpose in the installation instructions
of the appliance manufacturer
where all of the
following conditions are met:

(1) The flexible cord shall be terminated with a grounding type
attachment plug.
Exception: A listed dishwasher or trash compactor distinctly
marked to identify it as protected by a system of
double insulation, or its equivalent, shall not be required to
be terminated with a grounding-type attachment plug.
(2) The length of the cord shall be 0.9 m to 1.2 m (3 ft to
4 ft) measured from the face of the attachment plug to
the plane of the rear of the appliance.
(3) Receptacles shall be located to avoid physical damage
to the flexible cord.
(4) The receptacle shall be located in the space occupied
by the appliance or adjacent thereto.
(5) The receptacle shall be accessible.


From the UL White Book. DMIY

Some permanently connected type dishwashers may be converted to cord
connection by means of a cord kit that is available from the manufacturer of the dishwasher.

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Old 09-13-2011, 07:41 AM   #3
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Dishwasher Power Supply


Dishwashers are usually hardwired, meaning the house wiring connects directly to the washer, no plug or extension cord. If I were to install one with a cord it would be at least #14 wire, which also needs a plug in the wall. My advice on the guys at big box stores, don't listen!! Their advice is too often wrong.

There are some fairly good books for the novice at home and hardware stores. Good place to start. One book I always recommend is "Electrical Wiring-Residential" by Ray Mullin. Available on line or in books stores. It covers the basics and relates it all to the NEC(national electrical code)

Last edited by Just Bill; 09-13-2011 at 07:44 AM.
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Old 09-13-2011, 08:03 AM   #4
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If you decide to hardwire the DW you need to install a breaker lock at the panel.
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Answers based on the National Electrical Code. Local amendments may apply. Check with your local building officials.
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Old 09-13-2011, 08:05 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Bill View Post
Dishwashers are usually hardwired, meaning the house wiring connects directly to the washer, no plug or extension cord. If I were to install one with a cord it would be at least #14 wire, which also needs a plug in the wall. My advice on the guys at big box stores, don't listen!! Their advice is too often wrong.
The OP can hard wire it but it must comply with this.

422.32(B) Appliances Rated over 300 Volt-Amperes. For permanently
connected appliances rated over 300 voltamperes,
the branch-circuit switch or circuit breaker shall
be permitted to serve as the disconnecting means where the
switch or circuit breaker is within sight from the appliance
or is capable of being locked in the open position. The
provision for locking or adding a lock to the disconnecting
means shall be installed on or at the switch or circuit
breaker used as the disconnecting means and shall remain
in place with or without the lock installed.


Yes the clerks at big box stores are idiots.
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Old 09-13-2011, 11:54 AM   #6
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So what's the issue with the 16 gauge cord? It's rated for 125 volts, the dishwasher takes 120; it's rated for 13 amps, the dishwasher takes 9.7. So what's the problem?

Just trying to figure out this whole electricity thing... thanks to all who posted.

Originally I was going to hard wire it, cause it seemed easier, but then I was all like 'yeah what if you wanna clean behind there etc.' and now here I am... I already put the socket in the wall and drywalled around it so I don't want to go tearing it open again.
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain.Sassy View Post
So what's the issue with the 16 gauge cord? It's rated for 125 volts, the dishwasher takes 120; it's rated for 13 amps, the dishwasher takes 9.7. So what's the problem?

Just trying to figure out this whole electricity thing... thanks to all who posted.

Originally I was going to hard wire it, cause it seemed easier, but then I was all like 'yeah what if you wanna clean behind there etc.' and now here I am... I already put the socket in the wall and drywalled around it so I don't want to go tearing it open again.
What part of my post did you not understand? The issue is: are you going to follow the NEC and UL listing or not? BTW, if you do not your warranty is voided.
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Old 09-13-2011, 01:12 PM   #8
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Just Bill, I always recommend Black & Decker's "The Complete guide to Home Wiring." This year, it is supposed to have a DVD with it.
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Old 09-13-2011, 01:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain.Sassy View Post
So what's the issue with the 16 gauge cord? It's rated for 125 volts, the dishwasher takes 120; it's rated for 13 amps, the dishwasher takes 9.7. So what's the problem?

Just trying to figure out this whole electricity thing... thanks to all who posted.

Originally I was going to hard wire it, cause it seemed easier, but then I was all like 'yeah what if you wanna clean behind there etc.' and now here I am... I already put the socket in the wall and drywalled around it so I don't want to go tearing it open again.
The smallest gauge that you can wire with in a home is #14 solid or stranded. #16 is usually reserved for stuff like floor lamp cords.
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Old 09-13-2011, 01:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post
The smallest gauge that you can wire with in a home is #14 solid or stranded.
I could bring up fixture wires and taps.

I know, it would only confuse him, but I had to say it.
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Old 09-13-2011, 01:27 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Code05 View Post
I could bring up fixture wires and taps.

I know, it would only confuse him, but I had to say it.
Doh. I learned to not over think stuff, when I was in the Navy. Screws you up too much. Especially when working with servo motors and hydraulic systems that we used on our nav-aids on the landing deck to guide in aircraft.
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Old 09-13-2011, 07:56 PM   #12
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Dishwasher Power Supply


Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain.Sassy View Post
Question:
So anyways, I have a 120v, 9.6 amps (total, 2.7amp motor) dishwasher that I'm installing on a 20 amp breaker. The guy at the hardware store sold me a 16 gauge power supply cord rated for 13 amps and 125 volts. Will this be OK?

Background:
So this seems pretty straightforward, right? Power cord for a dishwasher. No problem! Go to Home Depot, ask them for a power supply cord for a dishwasher, they give me a 14 gauge power cord. Cool. Get home, find that the plug sticks out too much and the dishwasher won't fit like that. So I decide to get a power supply cord with the 90 degree angled plug. Go to another store that says on the phone that they have these, and they give me a 16 gauge power supply cord. Get on the phone with whirlpool, they tell me 'buy our power supply cord'. I say 'no, I want one that has the 90 degree angle, all I need to know is the specifics about this piece'. Then the guy on the phone from whirlpool says I need at least 12 gauge power supply and I have to switch the breaker out from a 20 amp breaker to a 15 amp breaker.

I'm thinking are you kidding me? How can it be this f'n difficult to get an answer on something so seemingly straightforward?


Also if anyone knows a website where they explain how electricity works can they point it out to me? I mean like electricity in the context of why you can't use certain light bulbs in some outlets or the light catches on fire, etc. Basic stuff people should know but I don't.

Is your dishwasher still under warrantty ?
If it is and you change some thing,
you could void your warrantty !
Although amp wise the 13a cord would work !
there could be other reasons why they reccomend a
larger cord. Electical codes is one of them.
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Old 09-13-2011, 08:25 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post
The smallest gauge that you can wire with in a home is #14 solid or stranded. #16 is usually reserved for stuff like floor lamp cords.
It is utilization equipment not branch circuit wiring.
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Old 09-13-2011, 08:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brric View Post
It is utilization equipment not branch circuit wiring.
He already got the point.
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Old 09-14-2011, 06:28 AM   #15
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With wiring, it is often a good idea to go beyond the load requirements.

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