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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2000, 10:39 AM
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Can you use a 3 prong cord with a 4 prong 220v?

Well I'm finally move into El Paso. Much better jeepin situation than Maryland. Anyways, we have a 220v outlet in the garage for the dryer accepts 4 prong electical cords. My welder has 3 prongs and looks like it would fit in just fine. What is the 4th prong for? Can I use my welder on this outlet? Also, is it possible to make an extension cord for the welder? If so what are my length limitations? Thanks.

BTW I only needed to use the hi lift once on the move out here. I somehow bent the tire protector on the tow dolly into the tire about 300 miles into the trip. Used the hi lift to spread the tubing back out so the wheel could turn.

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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2000, 11:06 AM
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Re: Can you use a 3 prong cord with a 4 prong 220v?

The 4 prongs on a dryer outlet are two phases, one neutral, and 1 ground. Your welder plug has only two phases and a ground because a neutral is not required for a welder. If your welder plug fits into the dryer outlet it is still not a good idea to use it that way because the two outside slots are the phases which is o.k. but the center prong of your welder plug would be matching up to the neutral slot of the dryer outlet not the ground (round hole) where it belongs. You should get a plug for the welder to match the dryer outlet and terminate the welder ground to match the dryer outlet ground and ignore the dryer outlet neutral as it's not needed for a welder. Yes, you can use an extension cord for your welder but if it's longer than maybe ten feet you should get at least one size larger wire. i.e. if the welder cord is #6 AWG then the extension cord should be made of #4 AWG remember smaller 3 = bigger wire.

Good luck and don't forget to turn off the juice if you get into the outlet!!

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2000, 11:22 AM
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Re: Can you use a 3 prong cord with a 4 prong 220v?

I have done this with my AC welder. It works OK. I was given a 20' piece of industrial electrical cable and I joined the dryer plug to that and attached the other end to my welder. I have fairly long welding cables but if I need to, I can move my welder and reach most things I'm working on.

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2000, 11:44 AM
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Re: Can you use a 3 prong cord with a 4 prong 220v?

I also have an extension cord for the Welder, and yes, it plugs into the dryer outlet, no problem. I used some industrial (2 Ga maybe) cable and it works fine, is also about 25' long. Been using it for years, even ran it one year off 100' of 220 Romax cable (to get from the trailer to the shop).

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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2000, 11:52 AM
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Re: Can you use a 3 prong cord with a 4 prong 220v?

I have to agree with Jay on using the earth ground. In most cases in a properly wired house, the neutral is tied to earth ground anyway. However, if something goes wrong and you loose that connection....And as we all know, there is a lot of juice there...it may be all amps and little voltage....but Murphy really has a sick sense of humor.

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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2000, 08:45 PM
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Re: Can you use a 3 prong cord with a 4 prong 220v?

[img]/wwwthreads_images/icons/tongue.gif[/img] Some devices have a "true earth" ground in addition to a neutral. In the case of the dryer, it is actually a wise thing to have a fourth wire because the tumble motor and low heat in a dryer is actually 120V and it is using the third wire in the three-wire plug as a current carrying leg. If you lost that leg in the main panel, you yourself would be the neutral for the 120V[img]/wwwthreads_images/icons/crazy.gif[/img] Trailer houses have a four-wire service, and in many states are considered an "appliance". The welder does not use anything but 240V, so it can be three-wire no problem. You can swap the plug out and just leave the fourth wire open, unless you change the welder to a four-wire cord, which would be a good thing to do. How about this....make your extn cord four wire and just use a three-wire female receptacle on the welder end.[img]/wwwthreads_images/icons/tongue.gif[/img]

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