In recent years, most dryer manufacturers have adopted the 4-prong electrical cord over the dates 3-prong model. While they can both effectively power a traditional dryer, the 4-prong model contains an extra grounding wire as a preventive measure. If the electrical wiring tied to your dryer malfunctions, the voltage burst may travel through the appliance and shock the user. With a 4-prong dryer cable, however, the grounding wire is there to catch the burst of electricity by grounding it. Unfortunately, though, most of the older homes don’t offer the convenience of a 4-prong dryer outlet, forcing the tenant or owner to change the cord on their dryer back a 3-prong model. If you’re simply dead-set on changing a 4-prong to 3-prong dryer cord, you can hire a professional electrician to come out and replace the outlet in your home. Be warned, though, it’s not cheap and will likely cost you several hundred collars. A cheaper alternative is to simply replace 4-prong dryer cable with a 3-prong. Most of the homes today are relatively safe as far as the electrical wiring goes, and you shouldn’t have a problem with it malfunctioning or sending out bursts of energy.
Purchase a 3-Prong Dryer Cord
First and foremost, you’ll need to purchase a 3-prong cord to install on your dryer. You can find these for sale at most Home Depot and Lowe’s stores for about $15-$20 bucks. If you’re lucky, you might be able to find someone willing to give you theirs in exchange for your current 4-prong cord. People are always in need of certain dryer cords, so call around to some friends and family members to see if anyone is up for a trade.
Replacing The Cord
Go ahead and pull your dryer unit back from the wall so you have more freedom and room to move around. Next, unplug the current cord going into the electrical outlet as well as the duct going into vent. You should see a small metal faceplate where the electrical cord runs into the machine. Take a screwdriver and gently remove the 2 screws holding it in place. Remove the faceplate and lay it off to the side along with the screws. With the faceplate removed, you can now attach the necessary cords to the dryer terminals. The silver wire attaches to the center terminal, while the other two wires go off to the sides. Lastly, attach the remaining wire (grounding wire) to the center terminal. As previously stated, 4-prong dryer cords have their own dedicated terminal for a grounding wire, but you must attach it to an existing terminal with a 3-prong model.