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Old 11-18-2010, 09:41 PM   #1
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I'm coverting an older 4-wire 240 VAC stove/rangetop (aluminum) circuit to a 3-wire 240 VAC 3-(copper) wire circuit for a hot-tub.

The aluminum cable between old stove receptacle and panel is all black wires (4 wire), and I intend to connect it to 3-wire. What should I look for at the main panel? I haven't delved into the panel yet (of course I'll disconnect the main when I do). I'm assuming I'll have two (same-looking) black wires going into the 50-amp breaker, and a third wire connected to ground. Where will the 4th wire be? I take my chances, I know... I'm an adult. My new 3-wire is - of course - red-black-green (ground). Appeciate the help.


Last edited by lupe_gris; 11-18-2010 at 09:53 PM.
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Old 11-18-2010, 09:53 PM   #2
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Is the hot tub inside or outside?

are you sure you don't need a 120/240 volt circuit for the hot tub?

Are you making the connection at the current oven recep? (so hot tub is in the kitchen?)


explain what you are doing because as it stands, it isn't making a lot of sense in how you are going to use this circuit for a hot tub.

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Old 11-18-2010, 11:04 PM   #3
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I assume too much (that y'all understand the whole situiation).

I needed a 50-amp circuit on my main panel, and there was no spare circuit. The house has a propane stove, but 240 VAC was wired to an outlet behind the stove. I have removed the 240 VAC 4-wire from the outlet behind the stove and pulled it down into the basement where it's accessible.

The hot-tude is outside. I've had it for a few years, and moved it here to my new house. It's 3-wire 240 VAC (red-black-green).

I want to connect the 4-wire 240 VAC to 3-wire (as required by the tub).

I haven't delved into the panel yet. Believe me, I'll cut the main when I do. But the cable that goes to the old stove circuit is 4-wire VAC and all 4 wires (6 gauge) are black insulated wire.

Can I convert this old 4-wire 240 VAC to 3-wire 240 VAC for the hot tub, and if so how?
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Old 11-19-2010, 06:27 AM   #4
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I would remove the existing breaker and install a 2 pole GFCI 50 amp breaker. I would abondon the old wiring and run a new 6-3 UF cable to the new location. Although you said the spa is 240 volts it is more likely 120/240 volts: meaning it requires an neutral and a 4 wire circuit. Check the ratings plate on the spa to verify. If is truly a straight 240 volts you can use 6-2 UF

I specify UF because the spa is outside and is a wet location. Certainly conduit and THWN wire is also an option. It sounds like your existing wiring is individual conductors and not a cable assembly. If so you must have some conduit in place.
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Old 11-19-2010, 08:13 AM   #5
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Yeah, let me just emphasize something - the stove is probably lower amperage circuit than 50A and the wire is probably undersized for 50A so don't reuse it for the hot tub. Especially with 3 black conductors, might mean it's an older wire, so it might have brittle insulation.
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Old 11-19-2010, 10:33 AM   #6
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The fourth wire will be the ground. It will be in the ground bus.
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Old 11-19-2010, 11:17 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjniles View Post
I would remove the existing breaker and install a 2 pole GFCI 50 amp breaker. I would abondon the old wiring and run a new 6-3 UF cable to the new location. Although you said the spa is 240 volts it is more likely 120/240 volts: meaning it requires an neutral and a 4 wire circuit. Check the ratings plate on the spa to verify. If is truly a straight 240 volts you can use 6-2 UF

I specify UF because the spa is outside and is a wet location. Certainly conduit and THWN wire is also an option. It sounds like your existing wiring is individual conductors and not a cable assembly. If so you must have some conduit in place.
Only one correction to you any outdoor cable for hot tub is not allowed it have to be conduit and have insluated grounding conductor and this is one of few area it is very strict on this one.

The UF will not pass this part due the UF do not have insluated ground conductor at all.

Merci.
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:06 PM   #8
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The OP has stated the colors of his hot tub wiring several times. red, black, green. hot, hot, ground. It is NOT 120/240. There is NOT a neutral (white or gray).

The OP merely needs to identify the two hot conductors and the ground, and cap-and-ignore the original neutral.

I haven't read in detail why we're discussing UF now, but rerouting the original indoor wire outside will NOT work. (it will work in that the tub will receive power and turn on, but it will eventually become a serious safety issue)
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emolatur View Post

I haven't read in detail why we're discussing UF now, but rerouting the original indoor wire outside will NOT work. (it will work in that the tub will receive power and turn on, but it will eventually become a serious safety issue)
because somebody suggested using UF.

If the OP has the cable into the basement, he can install a junction box there and run conduit outside. He must use conduit and an insulated grounding conductor.
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Old 11-19-2010, 07:07 PM   #10
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The tub is definitely 240 VAC: two hots and a ground. I have no doubt at all. I have the appropriate wire for outdoor run in a flex conduit between the spa and the spa disconnect (with 50 amp GFCI) box... within 5 feet or so of the tub.

I have new 6-2 w/ ground indoor copper cable that I intend to run from the terminus of the aluminum stove circuit (in the basement) I mentioned earlier, to a short section of exterior exposed conduit to the spa disconnect box.

The Main has a 50-amp (non GFCI breaker) for the old stove circuit.

I'd like to leave the 4-wire aluminum cable (the old stove circuit) in place and not run a whole new copper cable. I'm planning on using dual-rated split bolts to connect the copper to the aluminum stove circuit wires.

Sound okay so far? I'm thinking I can just identify the neutral in the 4-wire cable from the stove circuit, and cap it on both ends.

Appreciate all the great help.
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Old 11-19-2010, 07:29 PM   #11
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Quote:
I'm thinking I can just identify the neutral in the 4-wire cable from the stove circuit, and cap it on both ends.
that's what I would do.

Quote:
flex conduit
what kind of flex conduit?

Quote:
I'm planning on using dual-rated split bolts to connect the copper to the aluminum stove circuit wires
.this has to be in a junction box.

Quote:
within 5 feet or so of the tub
.I'm thinking that is too close but have to look it up.
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Old 11-20-2010, 10:58 AM   #12
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I'm thinking I can just identify the neutral in the 4-wire cable from the stove circuit, and cap it on both ends.
I guess I'm wondering (about running the 6-2 w/ground to the spa disconnect box w/ the GFCI): do I need 6-3 so that I have a neutral for the GFCI?? (even though the spa doesn't require it).

The conduit is the thick-walled grey plastic stuff, about 1" in diam. Not very flexible.

And yes, I'll b e using abox for the split-bolt connections.
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Old 11-20-2010, 11:40 AM   #13
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No. A 2-pole GFCI will work without a neutral provided the load is also only 2-pole.

The first several 2-pole GFCI breakers I ever saw didn't even have the neutral option.
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Old 11-20-2010, 12:42 PM   #14
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If you use this (picture) or something similar, you will need no GFCI breaker in the panel. Then follow the others instructions. Junction box and conduit with insulated conductors. The pictured disconnect is 50 amp and has the convenience receptacle included along with disconnect.

You are aware of the other requirements for outdoor tubs and spas? This tub may/likely be required to have an equipotential bonding grid to pass inspection. If you are setting this tub on the ground, on a slab, or on a deck outside, it must be bonded.
Article 680 in the NEC is where all the requirements are. Your inspector is going to require that you follow all the rules with no exceptions. I would contact the inspector and meet with him and go over your plans. Good luck.
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Old 11-20-2010, 01:16 PM   #15
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I'm having trouble pasting that image into the google search box to see where to buy one.

A picture is worth a thousand words, but I'd rather not guess a thousand google searches in their place. Maybe a name for it, or a model number, or somesuch would be more useful for the OP than just a picture alone?

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