50 Amp Wall Plug, 30 Amp Dryer

gary1001December 14, 2008

I was just given a new Whirlpool dryer and it has a 30 amp plug, but the outlet in my wall is a 50 amp plug. Can I use a converter (and if so, what type) to make the plugs match, or do I need to call an electrician and have my 50 amp plug in my wall converted to 30 amp?

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The outlet can be changed easily. The important point is what is the breaker on that circuit? If it's also 50 amp, it'll have to be changed to 30 amp or the dryer won't be properly protected. If a problem occurred with the dryer (shorted element or motor), a 50 amp breaker would allow too much current flow before it trips.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2008 at 4:15PM
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It would be very unusual for there to be a 50 amp outlet in a dryer location. 50 amp outlets are more typical in locations set up for large electric ranges or other appliances that draw a great deal of power. Are you sure it's a 50 amp outlet? What size is the circuit breaker that controls the outlet in question?

Are you by any chance confusing 3-prong and 4-prong outlets as being 30 amp and 50 amp outlets? If that's the case, you can simply change the plug on the dryer to conform with your outlet. Until a few years ago, most dryer outlets were set up for 3-prong plugs. Subsequently, the electrical code was changed for new installations, requiring outlets set up for 4-prong plugs. Both types, however, are rated for 30 amps.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2008 at 8:09PM
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I have this same problem... a 50 amp outlet in the wash room..and I just bought a 30 amp dryer.it's a rental house..go figure.
The question is.. how do I change these out? I had someone that was going to do it but they don't seem to have the time to come. I need help!

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 9:21PM
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