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Old 09-20-2014, 10:04 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
When you sell a H-I will probably call it out and someone will come along ans say it's fine.
I still get veteran electricians saying it's fine, which amazes me.
Same. Back then a lot of people just didn't understand it well, even SEU was misused originating from subpanels.
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Old 09-21-2014, 03:58 AM   #17
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So is the wire an earth or a neutral ?
If it is a 240 circuit
it doesn't need a neutral .
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Old 09-21-2014, 05:02 AM   #18
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So is the wire an earth or a neutral ?
If it is a 240 circuit
it doesn't need a neutral .
As he describes it, it is a bare ground being used as a neutral. Dryers (in the US) are 120/240.

I would replace the NM section with 10/3 and pull a #10 ground and neutral (2 wires) into the pipe using the the bare ground as a pull wire. And install a 4 wire receptacle.
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Old 09-21-2014, 09:49 AM   #19
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So is the wire an earth or a neutral ?
If it is a 240 circuit
it doesn't need a neutral .
The bare wire is an earth if it is found in NM-B. If it is SEU, and it comes from the main service disconnect, its ok. Why bare SEU is allowed to carry current and not NM-B? I don't know, but id say its more of a listing thing being more a technical violation in the NEC. I know of entire multi hundred condo divisions and cookie cutter homes built with the incorrect wire (10/2w/g 6-2wg) for dryers and ranges still going without issue. However, it was never code allowed.



Nearly all US designed dryers need both 120 and 240 unlike Euro models that only need 230 volts. In the US up until the 1996 NEC it was allowed to use the insulated neutral conductor or the neutral in SEU to ground the metal frame.

One reason why SEU might be allowed to carry current and not NM-B that before ranges and dryers SEU all the way up to the present day was/is allowed in millions of services where the concentric neutral carries current. Im guessing he thought was back then: if it can carry current at the service why not a range or dryer? NM-B became popular latter, and at first came with an undersized ground.
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Old 09-21-2014, 01:14 PM   #20
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I would replace the NM section with 10/3 and pull a #10 ground and neutral (2 wires) into the pipe using the the bare ground as a pull wire. And install a 4 wire receptacle.
I'm not putting any money and work into this while we don't need the receptacle. I keep it legal with the blank plate. I'll think about it again when we are selling the house or if my wife wants a dryer.

But thanks for the repair suggestion! I'll remember it for the future.
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Old 09-21-2014, 05:17 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by petey_c View Post
Plenty of older dryers/ovens/ranges were wired correctly and legally with SEU type cable, not NM.


I would guess that if it's a 240 only load
then it doesn't use the earth as a neutral
It would be ok under those circumstances

But it seems that now days they do use 120 & 240
so a neutral is required.
Under these circumstances it would be a problem.
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Old 09-21-2014, 06:22 PM   #22
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dmx, nearly all electric dryers that have ever been sold in the U.S. use 240V only for the heat. Everything else -- the motor, the timing circuits, and accessories like drum lights -- operates on 120V. So they all need a neutral.
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Old 09-21-2014, 07:45 PM   #23
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The bare concentric conductor from SE cable is a neutral, not the ground although it can be also used a a grounding conductor on a straight 240 volt load. The bare in NM is only a ground.
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Old 09-21-2014, 09:37 PM   #24
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The bare concentric conductor from SE cable is a neutral, not the ground although it can be also used a a grounding conductor on a straight 240 volt load. The bare in NM is only a ground.
Very true, also just to add for those reading SEU can not originate from a subpanel when feeding an old 120/240 volt dryer or range.
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Old 09-22-2014, 06:15 AM   #25
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The bare wire is an earth if it is found in NM-B. If it is SEU, and it comes from the main service disconnect, its ok. Why bare SEU is allowed to carry current and not NM-B? I don't know, but id say its more of a listing thing being more a technical violation in the NEC. I know of entire multi hundred condo divisions and cookie cutter homes built with the incorrect wire (10/2w/g 6-2wg) for dryers and ranges still going without issue. However, it was never code allowed.



Nearly all US designed dryers need both 120 and 240 unlike Euro models that only need 230 volts. In the US up until the 1996 NEC it was allowed to use the insulated neutral conductor or the neutral in SEU to ground the metal frame.

One reason why SEU might be allowed to carry current and not NM-B that before ranges and dryers SEU all the way up to the present day was/is allowed in millions of services where the concentric neutral carries current. Im guessing he thought was back then: if it can carry current at the service why not a range or dryer? NM-B became popular latter, and at first came with an undersized ground.

To understand some of the NEC codes, you have to travel back in time when they were adopted, this one is an easy one….. It was because of the war, raw materials were being used during this time period, so to save on material, they allowed SEU to be re-bonded at the appliance and eliminate the extra conductor….

When we got to 1996, the code panels decided the war was over, and eliminated this special rule from the NEC.

Now…. why people violated that rule by using NM was a misunderstanding of what was actually allowed, just like any code in the NEC, if you learn the code from your co-worker or boss, there is a good chance you are going to be misinformed.
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Old 09-22-2014, 06:19 AM   #26
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dmx, nearly all electric dryers that have ever been sold in the U.S. use 240V only for the heat. Everything else -- the motor, the timing circuits, and accessories like drum lights -- operates on 120V. So they all need a neutral.
And this has logic behind it as well, In the US, we have multiple voltages within the US, If they made strictly 240V dryers in the US, they would not work very well with a 208v service, the heaters would work fine but at a reduced output, but the motors, not so well…. It is much cheaper for a manufacture to purchase a 240v motor vs a 240/208v motor, and profits decides everything!


It is much cheaper for a manufacture to produce one unit than two different models at different voltages….

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