Dryer has three prong plug, but outlet has 4 prongs

Here’s my situation. I just moved in to my new house last week. I went to hook the dryer up and noticed my dryer’s power cord has three prongs, but my wall outlet (220) has 4 holes. So I started doing some research.

Most places state that you can simply buy a 4 prong power cord and replace the power cord on the dryer with the new 4 prong cord. For some reason this just doesn’t seem right.

I would rather buy an adapter that plugs onto the end of my 3 prong converting it to a 4 prong. Do these exist?

Anyone have any experience with doing this? My last dryer I blew up messing with the wires in the back so I would like to avoid that if possible. :stuck_out_tongue:

Oh yeah I’m in America, so if your not and you have weird power disregard this message.

cut the plug off the end of the dryer wire. Trim all the wires back so they’re all bare. The take pot shots at poking the different wires into different hole combinations until it works :slight_smile:

Just don’t use the 4th prong [insert scratching head smiley here]

The plugs do not match up to the holes correctly.

Is your dryer 220 electric or 110 electric? If it is 220, you can find an adapter at most appliance stores. If it is 110, call your electrician to install a new plug.

Time for the magic hammer to come into play and make the prongs fit! :smiley:

But seriously, if the wall socket has four prongs, there’s no reason why an adapter wouldn’t be available for it. Might not be easy to find though.

drill another hole


Ok I went ahead and bought an entire cord with the 4 prong plug on it. I installed it and everything works fine now. Here’s a good wiring diagram if anyone is interested:


I learned that the fourth plug is now the new standard, and is just an additional ground for safety. Both the three and four prong dryers are 220 watts.

Excitement never stops in good ol’ Indiana!

That would be Volts, rather than Watts. It’s interesting though, because I was under the impression that North American power was all 110V. Maybe I am mixed up.


:eek2: Yikes that looks dangerous! I wouldn’t be surprised if that were illegal here. How many Americans are electrocuted by exposed live wires like that?

FYI, Larger appliances use 220VAC to keep the current draw down. If the same appliance was to run on 120VAC it would take way to much current to run.

Doubt it is that many… Unless you live in an area without natural gas, most people use natural gas dryers which only use 110 V. Usually there is a cap that goes over the electrical connections as well.

Amazingly enough they sell a lot of dryers now with NO plugs. You have to go buy the one that fits your socket.

Anything for a buck… Gas Dryers don’t come with the flexible gas line either. When I bought my last clothes washer, one of its “features” was that it included the water lines. I still had to buy new ones because the ones included were cheap things with low burst pressure.

At least these things can be reused if still in good condition so you don’t necessarily have to purchase one. Most people will buy it though because the salesman will tell them they need it.