How to Run Electrical Wire for a Dryer


Installing an electric dryer in a structure or moving the dryer to a new location requires the running of electrical cable from the panel box to the dryer location. Unfortunately, it is against electrical codes to run new wiring across a floor or staple it to a ceiling. Follow local and national codes to run the electrical wire for a dryer. Check with your city or municipality for any specific electrical codes you must follow before beginning your wiring.

Things You'll Need

  • Double-gang old-work outlet box
  • Wallboard saw
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Slotted screwdriver
  • Hammer
  • Pliers
  • Cable clamp
  • Drill
  • 3/4-inch wood drill bit
  • Flashlight
  • Fish tape
  • 10/3 nonmetallic electrical cable
  • Electrical tape
  • Cable ripper
  • Trace the template that came with the double-gang old-work outlet box onto the wall at the dryer outlet location. Cut the drywall from the dryer outlet location with a wallboard saw.

  • Turn the main breaker off at the top of your main circuit panel. Remove the screws from the cover and remove the cover from the panel.

  • Place a slotted screwdriver against a knockout at the top of the main circuit panel. Hit the screwdriver handle with a hammer until you dislodge the round metal slug from the panel box. If the metal slug does not release after you strike it, grab it with pliers and twist it until it comes off the panel box.

  • Remove the lock nut from a cable clamp. Insert the threaded end of cable clamp. Insert the threaded end of the clamp through the knockout in the panel box. Twist the lock nut onto the threads of the clamp, securing it to the circuit panel box.

  • Drill holes through the top wall plates from inside the attic. Use a 3/4-inch wood drill bit and place the holes directly above the new dryer outlet and the circuit panel box. Because the house wiring runs from the panel box in several directions, a hole might already exist that you can use.

  • Get a partner to shine a flashlight through the hole you cut in the drywall for the dryer outlet as you feed a fish tape through the wall plate and down to the opening. The beam from the flashlight helps you guide the fish tape toward the opening.

  • Pull the end of the fish tape though the outlet opening. Secure a length of 10/3 nonmetallic cable to the fish tape long enough to reach from the outlet to the panel box. Take into consideration the height of the walls, the distance across the attic and at least 10 inches of excess cable at the panel box and the outlet location for wiring. Secure the 10/3 NM cable to the fish tape with electrical tape so the wire and tape does not pull apart.

  • Pull the fish tape up the wall into the attic, bringing the electrical cable with it. Pull the cable across the attic to the location above the panel box. Disconnect the cable from the fish tape.

  • Get a partner to shine the flashlight through the opening into the top wall plate above the panel box. Feed the fish tape through the cable clamp you installed in the panel box and into the attic.

  • Secure the cable to the end of the fish tape in the attic with the electrical tape. Pull the fish tape and electrical cable from the attic down through the wall and into the panel box. Disconnect the fish tape from the cable.

  • Rip 8 to 10 inches of the exterior plastic cover from the 10/3 NM cable with a cable ripper at both the dryer outlet location and the panel box location. This exposes the three 10 gauge THHN electrical wires inside the cable and the bare copper ground wire.

  • Push the wires you exposed through an opening in the back of the double-gang old-work outlet box. Leave the plastic tab over the opening connected to the box. It holds the wires inside the box. Turn both screws on the face of the double gang box clockwise until the box is secured to the wall.

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