DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum (http://www.diychatroom.com/)
-   Electrical (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/)
-   -   New electric dryer is blowing breaker! (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/new-electric-dryer-blowing-breaker-26737/)

minameismud 09-12-2008 06:12 PM

New electric dryer is blowing breaker!
 
I'm going to try to be concise. I will most likely fail.

Got a new electric dryer. It replaced a gas dryer that was as old as the home ('93/'94) we think. The electrical service for a dryer appears to have been installed when the home was built. (The breaker for it, which has been off since we moved in a year and a half ago, is in the middle of the breaker panel with other original breakers installed below it.) The dryer is rated for 220V at 30A/breaker. The dryer repair guy stuck a clamp-around ammeter around both hot lines, one was pulling 20.5A and the other was 23.8 (after the dryer started up on the hottest setting). He said the dryer is fine. Both breakers are rated for 30A (according to the imprint on the end of the switch, and are two full-size connected breakers, as any 220 breaker setup should be. After the dryer has been on with Regular or Hot as the temp setting for a third of a cycle, the breakers will trip. Guaranteed. Immediately after tripping, the breakers are very hot to touch. The wire run between the 4-prong outlet and the breaker panel is 10/3 according to the shield on the wires connected to the breakers, and is run through conduit from panel to receptacle the entire way.

There.

After all that, should I replace the breakers, replace the plug, replace the 10/3, or replace the whole mess?

kbsparky 09-12-2008 06:15 PM

You have either a bad breaker, or bad connection on the breaker or buss bars, or both.

IF your buss bars are corroded or burned, a new breaker will not solve this problem.

I'd start with a new breaker and go from there.

micromind 09-12-2008 07:14 PM

That current is just about right for a dryer, I'd bet a lot on the breaker being bad. They don't like to be in the off position for a long time, especially if you live in a humid climate.

Rob

P.S. A 30 amp breaker and #10 wire is the correct size for a dryer.

220/221 09-12-2008 07:41 PM

Replace the breaker CAREFULLY.

Turn OFF the power to your panel!!



It will probably be less than $10 at The Home Depot/Lowes.

If you die, it will cost a lot more.


Be CAREFUL.

minameismud 09-13-2008 11:42 AM

haha, yeah, milwaukee can be pretty humid (it's not the tropics, but it's not exactly arizona either). makes sense, and to 220/221, i've added a couple new circuits to my basement (cause the builders put half the house + basement + garage ON THE SAME 15A CIRCUIT), so i know enough to kill the mains before sticking anything inside the panel.

minameismud 09-13-2008 09:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kbsparky (Post 157583)
You have either a bad breaker, or bad connection on the breaker or buss bars, or both.

IF your buss bars are corroded or burned, a new breaker will not solve this problem.

I'd start with a new breaker and go from there.

After thinking about this for a bit, dumb question: is there visible evidence when a buss bar is corroded? ie. blackened, etc.?

micromind 09-13-2008 10:42 PM

When the breaker-to-bus connection goes bad, it's usually obvious.

Most of the time, the bus is discolored, and pitted from arcing. Sometimes, it's nearly impossible to even get the old breaker out,because it either won't slide on the bad bus, or it has welded itself to the bus.

Rob

minameismud 09-14-2008 11:45 PM

Just a check-in to say I'm still alive after swapping the breaker, and it appears that it was the breaker causing the problem. The dryer ran a full cycle through at the highest heat setting without dying. Thanks!


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:54 AM.