Why Grounding Your Dryer is Important

Posted by Stephanie Junek on

Did you know some dryer plugs are 3-prong and others are 4-prong?  Have you wondered why this is or have you had trouble connecting your dryer to your home electrical dryer outlet because they don’t match?

NEMA 10-30R outlet

The old style of 3-prong dryer cords did not include a ground wire.  Changes in the National Electrical Code now require dryers to be wired with a ground wire.  This means the cords now have 4-prong plugs.  There are some cases where you cannot plug your dryer into your receptacle.  This is because you may have an old dryer and a new construction home or a new dryer and an old home. 

NEMA 14-30R outlet

AC WORKS® brand residential collection contains a few options for you to adapt to the current outlet you have in your home, meaning you won’t have to hire an electrician to re-wire your outlets. 

When using an old 3-prong cord, the neutral wire had to be tied to the ground connection on the case of your dryer, which is metal.  When converting with a 4-prong adapter it is important to make sure the neutral terminal is not connected to the ground case. 

Make sure you are correctly connected before you plug your dryer in.  There are many things that can go wrong with a dryer that has been incorrectly ground.  For example, your hot wire could cause your dryer to become live, causing electrocution or shock to anyone who touches it. 

The 4-prong cords contain two hot wires, a neutral, and a ground wire.  This provides a safe path for any current traveling to the machine to be re-routed and avoid danger. 

We have a variety of dryer adapter types to find solutions allowing you to convert a 3-prong to a 4-prong or vice versa. 


AD14301030 Dryer Adapter by AC WORKS™


S10301430-018 Dryer Adapter by AC WORKS™


S14301030-018 Dryer Adapter by AC WORKS™

If you have any questions about how to convert or properly hook your dryer up to your current outlet contact our sales engineers for solutions.  info@acconnectors.com We are happy to help find the solution to work best with your existing hookups and teach you how to install them properly and safely. 

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  • Am I correct that when changing a 3 wire plug to a 4 wire plug, the extra white jump or piggy back wire that is hooked to the ground on a 3 wire should be coupled with the green wire from the 4 wire replacement on the ground switch? The dryer is not working. The home was inspected (although they missed some things) and I believe they would have checked that outlet (although, now I question it). Pretty sure Home Depot’s video instruction led the correct way on the second white ground wire pairing with the green ground. Never had an issue connecting red to red, white to white, and black to black. It is pretty basic. But I have never seen an additional white ground wire. Does the dryer need resetting somehow after moving it? 🤔

    Susan on
  • Dave, please check with an electrician or your dryer manufacturer for this question. Typically, a gas dryer should only be using a regular household plug that is grounded.

    Stephanie on
  • How do I ground a gas dryer? Purchased a home with a gas dryer. Inspector stated I need to ground my gas dryer
    How do I do that

    Dave on
  • Hi Rhonda. Yes, your dryer needs to be grounded to operate safely. If you need help grounding it, please consult a local electrician to get your grounding wire fixed or replaced.

    Christopher on
  • Will my dryer work without the ground wire not ground to anything it just there I think the person that put it in cut it to short to be able to connect it. Will that keep my dryer from working.

    Rhonda on

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