Kitchen Range Circuit 3 versus 4 wire

wg999November 3, 2010

Just did remodel on kitchen and have ordered new stove. We currently have electric range with 50a 3 wire - I forget NEMA number but upside down v with center neutral. While I realize code may allow me to continue with this, if I can run a new 4 wire 6/3 plus ground with new 4 wire outlet, is there a safety upside to doing this? It would involve the receptacle, 50 feet of cable and several hours of work on my part. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

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Ron Natalie

Depending on what you mean by remodel and what your local jurisdiction considers, that circuit probably did need to be upgraded to four wires. Yes, there is a safety increase in doing this (which is why the code changed).

Of course, you get no benefit unless you install a proper 4 wire plug on the range. Most relatively modern one have a strap between the frame (what should be connected tot he ground) and the neutral.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 8:48AM
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i personally would replace it, but i do not like neu/earth combined.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 3:43PM
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Thanks for response - all things considered it probably makes sense to upgrade - cost and time is not that significant given inceased safety - yes stove is set up to handle four wire with 4 wire lead - also remodel was total right down to studs - again, thanks

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 7:12PM
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nuetral - earth are ALWAYS combined. Look in the meter box. Look at the pole. There are only 2 wires there.
Nuetral - ground combined and one hot. Only after the
transformer are there 3 wires. again nuetral-ground combimed and 2 hots.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 7:17PM
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i already KNEW that, since i was 10.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2010 at 8:29PM
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It is actually a rather minor risk, and that was why it has been allowed for so long.

With hard wired equipment or the large receptacles and plugs used for stoves and dryers the chance of losing the neutral is very small.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2010 at 10:29AM
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