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What Gauge Wire Do I Need For My Dryer? (Let’s See)

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Last updated on August 14th, 2022 at 01:26 pm

Having prior knowledge of the gauge wire that fits your dryer is beneficial. First, it tells you the capacity of a wire that will fit your dryer.

You likewise need to know that bigger-sized wires bit down heat emission from electricity flow. So let’s see the gauge wire type that will suit your dryer.

Depending on your dryer’s current, dryers nowadays have their wire size to be 10-gauge. 10-gauge is the minimum recommended wire diameter for fabric dryers. But if yours runs on 40 amps or more, an 8-gauge wire is what you’ll need. By and by, you should consult the local building codes.

What Gauge Wire For 220v Dryer?

220v dryers with 30 amp trip switches use 10/3 American Wire Gauge(10 gauge) wires. These gauge wires typically consist of four component wires.

That is, three insulated and a single bare ground wire. Like I’ve said before, it’s best to use big-sized wires. This is because they beat down the heat generated from power flow.

You ought to know that modern dryers now operate on 220v and 240v circuits; these dryer circuits draw around 30amps.

They run on 30 amps though not in all cases. Some modern dryer circuits draw about 23 amps or operate on higher currents like 40 amps.

You can find your drying machine operating current on an attached label close to the control plate.

Subsequently, your washing machine’s operating electric current determines the wire size that fits it best.

But apart from your dryer wire size, current-draw also describes what size breaker is okay for the fabric dryer.

Talking more about how the amount of current-draw helps determine your dryer wire size.

For example, when your 220v dryer operates on 30 amps, you’ll consequently have the wire size 10 AWG.

On the contrary, if your 220v dryer operates on a max of 40amps, you’ll require a bigger wire size.  A size 8-gauge wire is what you’ll need.

As a guide to understanding your perfect dryer gauge, small gauge numbers depict large wires. Thus, a cord with a wire thickness of about 8-gauge has a large diameter.

Gauge numbers increase with a decrease in wire sizes. That should sound a bit clearer. Don’t interchange them.

Similar to your 220v dryer gauge wires, often utilize 4-prong outlets for circuits of dryers during new installation processes.

You shouldn’t be confused if you find some homeowners using three prongs. They’re outdated.

The national electric code guidelines now recommend 4-prong electric receptacles for dryers. Specifically, the ones that operate on 220v as well as 240v.

On a sounding note, it’s not so ideal if you attach 3-prong cords to four terminal dryers. So instead, effect a helpful modification.

Initiate a jumper wire at the mid-point between the neutral and ground terminals.

Know your dryer voltage and current draw if you intend to get a cord for your dryer. Afterward, you can purchase one.

But, first, ensure you get a perfect wire size or gauge wire that will fit the dryer.

You’ll find most dryers, including the ones of 220v, having a wire gauge of 10. But if your machine is larger than the normal ones, its gauge wire will likewise increase.

Getting the ideal gauge wire that fits your dryer voltage and the dryer itself would be advantageous.

Though getting a cord with a bigger size won’t have so many side effects, getting a smaller one than the ideal one will.

Oversized cords can run a temperature and cause a fire outbreak.

What Size Wire For 240v Dryer?

Electrical experts utilize wire sizes of about 12 in 120v appliances. But for your 240v dryer, the ideal wire size is 10-gauge.

Large home appliances like dryers don’t only utilize large voltages. They use thick gauge wires to aid the electricity supply.

Most, if not all, dryers are designed to carry a max current of about 30 amperes. And with these 30 amperes, the National Electric Code recommends a wire size of 10 gauge.

What I’m trying to say is. For fabric dryers to serve their 30 amperes, they often need thick wires. The minimum recommended wire thickness for them is 10 AWG.

Even though the recommendation is ten gauges, there are some situations where you’ll need wire sizes more than 10 AWG. Moreover, 10-gauge is merely the minimum.

Finally, you should know that current capacity decreases with an increase in the distance of your appliance circuit from the mains.

Due to this fact, appliance producers and technicians suggest a bigger wire size for electric circuits which extend to a distance further than usual.

In order words, circuits that run about 15ft need bigger wires. But, of course, you could always consult your local building department to ascertain specific wiring requirements.

Furthermore, cables are only one part of your dryer wiring equation. If you desire successful installation, make a fitting circuit breaker and outlet available.

They’ll also need a dedicated circuit to maximize their operation.

Now, electric cables usually bear a write-up on their outer covering. As part of these write-ups, you’ll find their American wire Gauge(AWG) number and the quantity of conducting wires.

Now, 12-gauge cables consisting of one neural and one hot conducting wire bear a 12/2 stamp.

Similarly, 10-gauge cords consisting of one neutral and two hot conducting wires bear a 10/3 stamp.

Consequently, 240v cloth dryers that draw about 30 amps typically have their cables marked 10/3.

On this stamp, 10 represents the gauge number for the  30amp current and 240v in this case.

The digit-3, which you’ll find below the digit-10, represents one neutral and two hot conducting wires.

10/2 Or 10/3 Wire For Dryer?

You should probably use 10/3 cable if it’s for your dryer. Yes, 10/3 cords perfectly fit the 120v and 240v loads of dryers.

10/2 cables, on the other hand, are meant for other appliances like electric wall heaters, which have no 120v loads.

These appliances usually don’t need two conducting wires, unlike 10/3 appliances such as dryers.

10/3 cables are cables of 10 AWG, two hot conducting wires, and one neutral wire. These three wires are generally designed for 220v and 240v circuits that draw current capacities of 30 amps.

These circuits are dryer circuits.

You should know that the electrical resistance of wires increases with a decrease in diameter. In other words, the resistance of a wire operates inversely with its diameter.

On a similar note, the more the resistance flowing through your cable or wire, the more it’s likely to heat up.

You’ll notice the outer rubber covering of a 12 gauge cable melting when giving current to a dryer.

You must get a 10/3 cable with two conducting wires for your dryer. You’ll avoid several issues, including excessive heat up.

For the effective operation of your dryer, use 10/3 cables. You can get one on Amazon.

Is 10/3 Wire Heavy Enough For A Dryer?

Though 8/3 wire could be better, merely utilize the standard 10/3 wires. 10/3 wires are thick enough for your 30 amp dryer.

So they’re fine for your dryer.

Some electricians may suggest 10/4 cables. In my opinion, they’re not suitable; they are typically utilized in residential appliances.

10/3 cords are efficient and acceptable for residential fabric dryers.

Can You Use 12-2 Wire For A Dryer?

I wouldn’t suggest a 12/2 cable for your dryer. NEC recommends a 10/3 wire for electric dryers that draw currents of 30amps.

Instead of utilizing a 12/2 cord for your electric dryer, use it when it comes to washers.

Some technicians bring up suggestions of mixing a 12/3 wire and 10/3 cable on a 30amps dryer. Here’s what I think.

Even if you mix them both, you’ll be limited to the lower-12/3 one. The combination of these two may interfere with the smooth operation of your dryer.

Is 12/3 Wire Heavy Enough For A Dryer?

12/3 wires aren’t weighty enough for your residential drying machine.

10/3 gauge is the standard for electric dryer wire sizes. NEC(National Electric Code) recommends that size.

You can utilize 12/3 wires for your electric drying machine. The only problem is that 20 gauge wires are only ideal for conducting about 20 amps.

They’re not like 10/3 meant for 30amps.

To avoid a fire outbreak due to an electrical fault somewhere, merely use what’s ideal. If you’re confused about any installation process, call the attention of your electrician.


The wire gauge type that fits your drying machine is majorly dependent on the current drawn from its circuit. Most dryers nowadays make use of dryer circuits that draw about 30 amperes.

Thus, the suggested dryer size and probably the minimum is 10/3. But if the current draw from your dryer circuit is 40amps thereabout, use an 8/3 gauge wire.

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