We got a new stove today, but it couldn't be hooked up because the cable is four pronged and we have a three prong outlet. So, I unhooked the three pronged cable from the old stove before it was hauled away to hook up to the new stove. This is the obvious answer to me, though I'm not an electrician. Before I hook it up, I thought I'd ask my very knowledgeable fellow members on TT who have knowledge about electrical issues if they think this is the right solution, or am I about to burn the house down. Family wants me to call an electrician, but I hate to spend a ton of money on something that may be obvious (yet safe). Thanks in advance!
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I do not think an electrician is needed. When you say 3 and 4 prong, please elaborate.
The typical stove cord and plug has 3 prongs and what I would call the top 2 are tilted inward, with the last one on the bottom straight up and down.
4 prong might have been a "specific" or "special" plug for an oven. Can you remove the cover of the 4 prong outlet? Let me know how many wires are hooked up and their color please.
You need to provide more details; is your new stove a 240-volt range? If so, and if you are trying to connect to a standard 120-volt outlet, that ain't gonna happen in any world.
If you have a 4-prong cord on a 240-volt device that you are trying to connect to a 3-prong 240-volt outlet, you can get a new cord for the appliance. The owner's manual may have a wiring diagram to tell you how to do this. The newer 240-volt appliances are being designed for the new wiring standards (2 hot, 1 neutral, 1 ground) in single-phase systems, but older homes do not necessarily have the newer style of electrical wiring. However (and take note): local codes vary, and this may or may not be permissible where you live.
Bottom line: you should call an electrician if you do not know what you are doing. Rewiring a plug or an appliance is a fairly simple job and should be a $100 repair or so. Chmup change for peace of mind, and no chance you are going to kill yourself with a 240-volt jolt.
Most 220v appliances do not come with the cord, so that the installer can either hook up a 3 or 4 prong cord based on the receptacle in the house. Either one will work, the 4 prong is a safer chord though. You can look up how two's online or in the instruction manual with the stove.
$100 is a huge amount for something that can be done by yourself if you're able.
Is the outlet behind the stove a big black one, or a regular outlet that you'd see in a living room to plug in a tv?
There are a couple of different looking 220v plugs. This may be just a case of switching the cords from your new stove to the old cord. But, like posted above, if you have a 110v outlet, like the one in the living room, and you need to plug in a 220v oven, it will never work. That is a job for an electrician.
On the older range w/ the 3-wire cord the frame is "bonded" (akin to grounded) through the neutral. A metal bonding strip runs from the neutral connection to the frame, providing the bond.
On the newer range w/ the 4-wire cord the bonding strip is removed since the neutral and ground are now separate (the 4th wire is the ground).
Putting a 3 wire cord where a 4 wire cord was means the range is no longer grounded.
It just means he has to jumper the neutral wire to the ground. The same as if it were bonded.
"The typical stove cord and plug has 3 prongs and what I would call the top 2 are tilted inward, with the last one on the bottom straight up and down."
That's sounds accurate.
"Is the outlet behind the stove a big black one, or a regular outlet that you'd see in a living room to plug in a tv?"
The outlet behind the stove is a big black one and it is 220.
"This may be just a case of switching the cords from your new stove to the old cord."
That's what I thought I'd do, just wanted to know if there was any reason not to attach the old three pronged cable to the new stove, which came with a four pronged cable.
"Putting a 3 wire cord where a 4 wire cord was means the range is no longer grounded."
Hmm. That doesn't sound safe. If I can't put the three wire cord where the four wire cord is supposed to be, then I will have to get an electrician to replace the outlet. That sucks. (nothing against electricians, mind you.) Just thought this would be a simple, doable thing.
Switching the outlet likely means he will need to re-feed the outlet. There is likely a 10-2 or similar wire running to the outlet. To get a 4 prong recept. put in, he will need two feed wires, a neutral, and a seperate ground (10-3 or similar).
It would be cheaper to have the electrician hook the 3 prong appliance cord up to the new stove. But he may decline doing that.
Yeah they changed the standards a few years back to have a separate ground wire for stoves. I am not sure if they changed it for dryers but hey probably did.
When we moved into our new house, I had to change the cord on our dryer for a similar reason.
I did it myself without any electrical background or skill. That was 6 1/2 years ago, we haven't had an issue.
Don't know if there is a big difference with stoves, but you should be able to find that answer quickly from any electrician. If it's just a simple cord change, you can easily do yourself if this not-generally-handy suburban mom could handle it.
If the outlet box for the range receptacle is steel you probably have a ground there, the steel box requires a ground. You may have a ground wire attached to the steel box w/ the remaining length coiled inside since the 3 wire outlet does not require it. Attach it to the new 4 wire outlet.
The range wiring is run in conduit/pipe from the range outlet to the electrical panel. The connected conduit carries the ground path instead of a ground wire. You would attach a wire from the grounded steel box to the 4 wire range outlet.
If neither you may require new wiring to the outlet. #8/3 copper or #6/3 aluminum @ 40 amps, #6/3 copper @ 50 amps. #6/3 means size of wire (6)/and number of conductors (3). The ground wire is there, just not counted as a conductor.
Dryers now require the 4 wire cord/outlet.
Buy a tester, check everything/assume nothing/hire a (hopefully union) electrician. Internet advice disclaimer.
lol, a union electrician. Hire someone you feel will do a good job. Just because they have a union card doesn't mean anything about their knowledge or work ethic.
I finally hooked the thing up. Had to take the back end off of the stove and screw the three wire cord on. A neighbor who is an electrician was kind enough to check it to make sure it's grounded. Thanks to everyone who responded to my post!
Thinking of a old three stooges movie, turn on the stove and the light comes on, turn off the light and the water comes on, turn off the water and oven door pops open.
"Yay! Let the cookin' commence!"
Yup. Lots of Christmas cookies getting baked today. You can only use the microwave for so long, lol, until you realize you need the stove for stuff. That, and getting nagged to get the darned thing running.
"Thinking of a old three stooges movie, turn on the stove and the light comes on, turn off the light and the water comes on, turn off the water and oven door pops open."
Hahaha! Nothing like that so far. Checked all the knobs, heating elements, and buttons. Works great!