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Mike, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 1425
Experience:  Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
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I have run a new 30 amp double breaker dryer circuit using

Customer Question

I have run a new 30 amp double breaker dryer circuit using 10/3 gauge wire for a new 4 prong outlet. I used the same double 30 amp beaker that had the old dryer circuit on it which was only a 3 pronged outlet. Issue is I disconnected the old hot leads from the breaker and installed the new 10/3 hot leads to it , the new ground to the bus bar ground bar and the neutral to the neutral bus bar . The old circuit wires That had the old dryer outlet I just want to cut off and leave them in the wall. There are two issues. First I cannot seem to identify the white neutral wire that goes to the bus bar in order to remove it. What if any issues does that cause and is it a danger? Secondly can I cap off the two old wires with wire nuts and tuck them up in the panel box? I cannot get to the top of the panel box to pull them out.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Kevin replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome to Just Answer. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist you with your electrical question.

1) What was the wiring scheme that was installed on the original dryer circuit? Romex cable or BX cable or conduit?

2) Have you visually traced from where the original 2 hot wires that terminated to the 30 amp breaker? Do the 2 original hot wires end up in the same cable sheath or the same conduit? If so, you should be able to locate the corresponding white neutral wire?

3) Take a look at the neutral bus bar. The original white dryer neutral would have been a 10 AWG white copper wire. Process of elimination, doubt that the neutral bus bar contains too many 10 AWG white neutrals landing there?

4) Yes, the unused original hot wires can be capped off inside the main panel, that is not a problem.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Kevin
Ok the wiring scheme is metal conduit. The old dryer circuit was in its own conduit so I was able to trace the neutral wire back up to the conduit where it entered the service panel on the top. Issue was I could not see it as there was about 20 other incoming wires hiding it as it was tucked behind them. You are right I also saw that there were only a couple of 10 gauge and 8 gauge wires of that magnitude on the bus bar the other two are for two electric stove circuits I am leaving. I will just cap off and mark the 3 unused wires in the service panel just so someone in the future knows what they were for.My other issue is on the attached photo in my bath room I am redoing. The electrical box you see in the photo has 3 sets of wires coming into it and they originally had an outlet box that was controlled by the light switch that I have attached a photo of. I installed two new light switches and used the identical wires that the old ones had so the two switches and their wiring schemes did not change. However the old duplex electrical outlet in the box shown with the 3 wires had two black wires going to it and one white wire. I want to install a vanity light there instead of the outlet they had using the same light switch. Issue is when I just used the 2 black wires and one if the white wires to connect then to the temporary PORCELEAN fixture I blew the circuit. The white romex cable controls the light (which use to control the plug in outlet they had there) , the black romex cable goes to the junction box and controls the ceiling fan, and the 3 wires in the metal conduit are the source. The red wire with the yellow connector on it was never wired to anything and was capped like that in the electrical box. The two black wires are the hot wires when I put my tester on them. So how do I wire in a regular light fixture to this. As I said I had two blacks going to the light fixture and one white and it blew the circuit. Why did that happen as all I did was remove that same wiring scheme they had on the duplex outlet. I have attached some photos
Expert:  Kevin replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the replies and the pic's.

1) You mentioned that the duplex originally had 3 wires terminating to 2 blacks and 1 white. Sounds like this receptacle was split wired since only 1 white neutral. Most likely 1/2 of the receptacle was always live and the other 1/2 was switched. Thus the reason only 1 white neutral existed.

2) If re-using the same 2 black wires onto a switch or to the light fixture, the circuit breaker tripped due to a direct short circuit.

3) In order to confirm the functionality of the 2 black and 1 white wires, you will need either a 2 wire lead AC voltage tester (a contact type) or an AC voltmeter.