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How Many Amps Does A Dryer Use? (Explained)

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A clothes dryer, just like all electric appliances, relies on current to run. However, when there is a high inflow of current, your dryer is at risk of getting burnt.

On the other hand, your dryer may lose functionality with the insufficient current. This dilemma prompts one to ponder how many amps a cloth dryer should use.

An electric cloth dryer uses between 7.5 amps and 30 amps as a household appliance. However, most dryers function on 30 Amps. The amount of amps consumed by a dryer is relative to its voltage; thus, the higher the voltage, the higher the number of amps it will use.

How Many Amps Does A Clothes Dryer Use?

How Many Amps Does A Dryer Use? (Explained)

Depending on the brand and specific voltage, various dryers consume varying amps. 110V/ 120V Portable compact laundry dryers use between 7.5 amps – 15 amps. 220V/ 230V dryers use between 10 amps – 30 amps.

Typically, the most common dryers are 240V. However, although they are uncommon, dryers run on a 220/ 230 voltage. The difference between 220V and 230 dryers is insignificant.

Therefore, they share the same voltage level and use the same amps. For example, 220V dryers use between 10 amps- 30 amps.

Albeit, the most commonly seen is 24 amps- 30 amps. Therefore, 110V and 120V laundry dryers are also known as portable compact dryers.

They are low amp dryers that use between 7.5 amps and 15 amps, thus saving energy. Nevertheless, portable dryers are convenient for use in smaller spaces, saving energy.

Examples are; Panda, Bosch, Magic chef, Black+ Decker, L.G studio, and Samsung air dresser.

Is a Dryer 30 or 50 Amps?

Most residential clothes dryers require a 30 amps circuit breaker. It is not advisable to use a 50 amps breaker for a 30 amps dryer outlet.

The receptacle of an electric dryer is rated for 30 amps and cannot be protected by a larger amperage breaker.

So far, the dryer cable is rated for 30 amps, and whether it’s three or four prongs, the breaker should be the same, i.e., 30 amps.

The wire amp that feeds the circuit breaker has to match or be lower than the breaker size. Also, appliances on the circuit must not exceed the wire or breaker’s maximum rating.

The typical size of a dedicated circuit for a dryer, for example, would be 30 amps. A minimum of  #10 copper or #8 aluminum is required for 30 amps.

The breaker must be no more than 30 amps with this wire size. Use a circuit breaker equal to the current rating of the wire.

The 50 amps breaker is tedious to use because you need to measure all the circuit elements, especially the wires.

This is done to decipher if the elements are compatible with a 50 amp circuit. A 50 amps circuit breaker is built on a six gauge copper wire circuit.

A clothes dryer breaker amp shouldn’t be larger than the amps to be carried by the wiring. If your dryer draws more than the circuit can take, the circuit breaker will trip off.

The breaker’s size depends on the circuit type and the energy consumption of the dryer.

How Many Amps Does a 240V Dryer Use?

240V dryers generally employ between 10 and 30 amps, with 30 amps most prevalent.

About 60% of 240 Volt residential electric dryers use 30 amps. Therefore, a 240V dryer with low amperes is an anomaly.

The standard revolves around 24- 30 amps. If your dryer is of a lesser voltage, please note that 220V and 230V dryers use the same amps as 240V.

The amperage draw is subject to change based on the voltage and temperature. If your dryer doesn’t fall in this voltage category, you can check its amp via an energy monitor.

An easier way to check is by checking the sticker glued onto the cloth dryer. Just in case the sticker has peeled off or is worn out, you will find all the necessary information on the documents of your dryer.

What Kind of Wire Does a Dryer Need?

According to the standard electrical code, clothes dryers must have a dedicated four-wire circuit (10-3 type NM ground cable) protected by a 30 amp breaker.

Clothes dryers require a thick cable wire to handle the 30 amp circuit. A minimum wire size of 10 gauge is suggested for a cloth dryer circuit.

The wiring material used for clothes dryers and other household electrical supplies is known as Non-metallic (NM) cable.

NM cable comprises insulated copper wires that are encased in a plastic sheath. An NM cable has at least three wires: one hot wire, one neutral wire, and one grounding wire.

Clothes dryers require unique and specific wiring to produce extreme heat and run a timer alongside other functions simultaneously.

Although most household clothes dryers require a conventional wire size, certain factors play an influential role.

Considering that amperage diminishes as distance increases, dryer producers advise using a bigger wire gauge for circuits that run a certain distance from their source.

Therefore, a littler gauge implies thicker wires, while a bigger gauge suggests thinner wires.

Does a Dryer Need a Ground Wire?

Yes, a ground cable is an essential requirement for a clothes dryer.

There is a ground wire and a neutral wire on every NM cable. Typical electrical clothes dryers require 240 volts for heavy-duty operation and 120 volts for timers and controls.

This necessitates the use of two hot wires, resulting in a total of four wires in your cable. Even though the fore-wire of the ground cable is the fourth wire, manufacturers frequently leave it out of cable counts.

As a result, a three-wire cable will be the designated description when purchasing a clothes dryer cable.

Cables are named concerning their wire gauge and also the number of wires.

For instance, a 10- 3 Non-metallic (NM) cable refers to installations beneath 15 feet. On the other hand, an 8- 3 NM cable installs eight gauge wires.

Where Does The Ground Wire Go on a Dryer?

The dryer ground wire is connected to either the side of the terminal block or the external housing.

Formerly, clothes dryers were 3-prongs, and the cords didn’t include a ground wire.

However, recent changes created by the National Electrical Code now necessitate dryers wired with a ground wire.

This means that the cords now have 4-prong plugs. You may encounter some cases where you face difficulty plugging your dryer into your receptacle.

This situation occurs when you have an old dryer and a new home construction model or a new dryer and an old home. You can maneuver it without rewiring your outlets when faced with this challenge.

All you have to do is find a suitable adapter type that excellently suits your current outlet with it 3-prongs to 4-prongs or 4-prongs to 3-prongs.

The neutral wire has to be attached to the ground connection on the metal case of your dryer when utilizing an old 3-prong cord.

Therefore, it is critical to ensure that the neutral terminal is not connected to the ground casing while using a 4-prong adapter.

Before you plug in your dryer, it’s important to double-check to ensure that you’re connected properly. Numerous issues can arise from a dryer that has been ground faultily.

An example involves your dryer coming alive with a surge of electricity, resulting in damaging a dryer, electrocution, or shock to anyone who comes into contact with it.

Two hot wires, a neutral, and a ground wire make up the 4-prong cords. This creates a safe path for any current flowing towards the machine to be rerouted.

Conclusion

The clothes dryer wiring equation includes more than just a cable. There is a need for the correct outlet and a circuit or amp breaker for a successful installation.

But, have it in mind that dryers require dedicated circuits; these circuits exclusively serve only one appliance.

Also, a 240-volt outlet is required for a clothes dryer, which has enormous connectors. The circuit breaker typically has two poles that deliver 240 volts and varies from 30 amps to 50 amps.

Thus, it’s risky to wire breakers and outlets as minor errors might erupt in a blow-up, significant bodily injury, and even loss of property. It is best to seek assistance from a specialist or technocrat.

Sources:

https://www.cpsc.gov/content/Clothes-Dryer/

https://www.nfpa.org/codes-and-standards/

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