How to Pigtail Wire an Electric Range


Receiving a new electric range from your local appliance dealer may leave you with a lack of confidence on how to install the range. One of the most disconcerting steps is how to wire the range when it doesn't have a cord. Using a pigtail obtained at the local hardware store will solve this problem.

Things You'll Need

  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Strain relief
  • Open the access plate at the bottom of the range on the back panel. It will contain three power connection screws and a grounding screw. The grounding screw connects to the center power screw by a copper grounding strap. Like most appliances, the power connection screws reside in a metal enclosure that serves as a junction box.

  • Punch out one of the wire holes on the bottom of the range inside the junction box. Affix the strain relief in the hole before passing the end of the pigtail through the hole. Use only one of the screws in the strain relief at this time; the other will be installed at the completion of the wiring job.

  • Feed the four wires of the pigtail through the strain relief into the junction box. Each wire on the pigtail should terminate in a connector. The four wires are colored red, green, white and black. Both the red and black wires are hot wires that carry 120 volts. The white wire is the neutral wire, and the green is the ground wire.

  • Remove the grounding strap between the neutral and ground terminal. The National Electrical Code has required four prong connections since 1996.

  • Make the connections with the power terminals in the following order: red to the right-hand terminal, green to the green-colored terminal, white to the center terminal and black to the left-most terminal. Tighten the screws firmly.

  • Install the second screw in the strain relief and tighten until it securely holds the cable. Do not crush the cable by overtightening.

  • Reinstall the cover panel.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure the power is off to the power outlet.
  • Do not plug the pigtail into the outlet before wiring the range.

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  • Photo Credit Close-up image of an electric range heating element image by Alexey Stiop from
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