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Old 02-25-2013, 04:12 PM   #1
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Hello,

I have read a lot about this topic here, but it appears I may have a somewhat unique dryer (it is a Maytag so probably not).

My main concern is that when there was a four prong plug installed in the dryer, the green prong and a white prong that is part of a cable bundle heading back into the dryer were on the post on the dryer case. I believe this is how you ground the unit using a four prong plug.

Now that I am using a three prong plug, do i put that white wire back on the post on the dryer case? It would make sense to me that this was some kind of grounding wire attached to another piece of metal somewhere inside the dryer, but I cannot tell for sure and the manual does not mention it.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Chris

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Old 02-26-2013, 10:39 AM   #2
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Almost all dryers need a neutral for things like timers or lights. Older installations were three wire, two hots and a ground. The neutral was derived inside the dryer by using the ground wire as the return path. New installations are four wire, two hots and one each neutral and ground clear back to the panel. So, the newer receptacles and plugs separate the ground and neutral within the dryer.

It is preferable to use a four wire system if possible. If you have a four wire receptacle, get a four wire plug. If you do not have a four wire receptacle, then you must attach the white wire to the grounding point to make the neutral within the dryer controls.

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Old 02-26-2013, 11:23 AM   #3
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Quote:
Originally Posted by al_smelter View Post
Almost all dryers need a neutral for things like timers or lights. Older installations were three wire, two hots and a ground. The neutral was derived inside the dryer by using the ground wire as the return path. New installations are four wire, two hots and one each neutral and ground clear back to the panel. So, the newer receptacles and plugs separate the ground and neutral within the dryer.

It is preferable to use a four wire system if possible. If you have a four wire receptacle, get a four wire plug. If you do not have a four wire receptacle, then you must attach the white wire to the grounding point to make the neutral within the dryer controls.
You have this totally wrong ... dryers need a neutral for the motor and controls. Older installations were not 2 hots and a ground .. they were two hots and a neutral as was the branch circuit. You cannot derive a neutral inside a dryer ... what you had was a neutral coming from the panel to the dryer terminal block where you then bonded the neutral via the terminal to the metal chassis. This was so you could provide a ground fault path using the neutral of the branch circuit.

You never attach the neutral to a grounding point .. what you have with 3 wire dryers is a white wire or bare if seu cable (neutral) connected to the neutral terminal of the dryer wiring block. You then run a bonding strap or wire from the neutral terminal to the metal chassis.
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Old 02-26-2013, 11:49 AM   #4
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Quote:
Originally Posted by noonance View Post
Hello,

I have read a lot about this topic here, but it appears I may have a somewhat unique dryer (it is a Maytag so probably not).

My main concern is that when there was a four prong plug installed in the dryer, the green prong and a white prong that is part of a cable bundle heading back into the dryer were on the post on the dryer case. I believe this is how you ground the unit using a four prong plug.

Now that I am using a three prong plug, do i put that white wire back on the post on the dryer case? It would make sense to me that this was some kind of grounding wire attached to another piece of metal somewhere inside the dryer, but I cannot tell for sure and the manual does not mention it.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Chris
Sounds more like the dryer was not set up for a 4 wire connection. At any rate for three wires you will have your power cord neutral connected to the dryer neutral terminal. The small white wire also connected to same and the green wire also connected to same terminal. Dryers vary sometimes the little green wire that comes in the wiring bundle from inside the dryer is bonding the control panel metal to neutral and then there is also a metal strap that bonds the neutral to the metal chasssis.

If you have a model # we can look up the installation instructions and clarify how your dryer should be wired for 3 wire supply.

You also need to verify your branch ciruit wiring and breaker.
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Old 02-26-2013, 01:33 PM   #5
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubbie View Post
You have this totally wrong ... dryers need a neutral for the motor and controls. Older installations were not 2 hots and a ground .. they were two hots and a neutral as was the branch circuit. You cannot derive a neutral inside a dryer ... what you had was a neutral coming from the panel to the dryer terminal block where you then bonded the neutral via the terminal to the metal chassis. This was so you could provide a ground fault path using the neutral of the branch circuit.

You never attach the neutral to a grounding point .. what you have with 3 wire dryers is a white wire or bare if seu cable (neutral) connected to the neutral terminal of the dryer wiring block. You then run a bonding strap or wire from the neutral terminal to the metal chassis.
Wrong... And not wrong. A three wire dryer receptacle is considered two hots and a GROUND. You can call it what you want, as most panels have bonded neutrals and grounds. But if you search around, you will find mostly links like below:

http://www.how-to-wire-it.com/wire-a-dryer-outlet.html

The neutral in a three wire setup is 'derived' from the ground wire going to the machine through bonding. The older dryers even had the green screw terminal for the third conductor. Newer code cycles have now determined to separate the equipment ground path and neutral conductor.

Semantics.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:03 PM   #6
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


A NEMA 10-30 is a 3 wire, 125/250 volt, non-grounding straight blade configuration intended for the connection of 2 Hots and a Neutral. A NEMA 14-30 is a 4 wire, 125/250 volt, grounding straight blade configuration intended for the connection of 2 Hots, a Neutral, and an EGC (Ground conductor).

http://www.stayonline.com/reference-home.aspx
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:16 PM   #7
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Sorry Al, the 3 wires were two hots and a neutral. The ground was bonded to the neutral.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:59 PM   #8
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Quote:
Originally Posted by al_smelter View Post
Wrong... And not wrong. A three wire dryer receptacle is considered two hots and a GROUND. You can call it what you want, as most panels have bonded neutrals and grounds. But if you search around, you will find mostly links like below:

http://www.how-to-wire-it.com/wire-a-dryer-outlet.html

The neutral in a three wire setup is 'derived' from the ground wire going to the machine through bonding. The older dryers even had the green screw terminal for the third conductor. Newer code cycles have now determined to separate the equipment ground path and neutral conductor.

Semantics.
Your link was written by a generic author who is not an electrician and unfortunately is in error. Please be careful and check your authors. And no you do not find that the above to be common when searching 3 wire dryer connections.

As proven to you 3 wire dryer receptacles are not 2 hots and a ground.

You do not magically 'derive' a neutral by running an equipment ground to a dryer then bonding it to the chassis. You would have to connect an equipment ground wire of the branch circuit to the neutral terminal of the dryer. Meaning if it was a ground it would be bare or green and you do not do that on any installation. Neutrals are derived from the center tap of the source transformer not ground wires bonded to dryer chassis.

Semantics ? ... Hardly

Your attempt at saying neutrals and grounds are bonded in the panel and therefore are seemingly the same thing shows you do not understand what your talking about.

Quote:
The older dryers even had the green screw terminal for the third conductor
Nope .. they never were that way.
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Old 02-26-2013, 08:12 PM   #9
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[Help] changing a Maytag dryer from a 4 prong cord to a 3 prong cord


Quote:
Originally Posted by al_smelter View Post
Almost all dryers need a neutral for things like timers or lights.
Actually, most if not all dryers have a 120v motor, and a 240v heater, and this is for simplicity of buildings supplied with a 208v service... running a 240v motor @ 208v would not last very long.... but the heater will work but with a lower wattage output.

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