What Wire Is Required for a Wall Oven?

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A wall oven functions just like a freestanding oven, but is installed into the wall. This gives you more kitchen space and greater flexibility because you can have your stove top in another part of the kitchen. Wall ovens have similar wiring requirements to their freestanding equivalents, but should be mounted and installed by a professional. Know the wiring requirements before setting up your wall oven to save yourself from potential hassles later on.

Gauge

  • Wire size, or gauge, is determined by the National Electrical Code’s AWG wire numbering system. Note that thinner wires with lower capacities have higher numbers, while thick, high-capacity wires have lower numbers. A 220- to 240-volt wall oven with a 40-amp breaker requires an AWG No. 8 gauge wire. The same oven that uses a 50-amp breaker requires a AWG No. 6 gauge wire. Check with the manufacturer or consult the owner’s manual for the recommended wire gauge for your unit.

Length

  • Because a wall oven is installed directly into the wall, a long wire is not usually necessary. The wire should be just long enough to reach the outlet without stretching or bending. You shouldn’t need a wire longer than 6 inches, but check the configuration to make sure the wire is the right length.

Plug

  • New ovens generally use four-prong plugs and outlets, just as washing machines and dryers do. Your power cord should have one red wire, one white wire, one white wire and one green wire to meet the four-wire requirement. You may need to install a special outlet to accommodate the four-prong system. This job is best left to a professional electrician.

Material

  • Choosing the right material for your oven is also important. Use a solid copper wire to power a wall oven. Aluminum wires or copper-coated aluminum wires are less resistant and many local electrical codes prohibit them these days.

Precautions

  • Whenever working with electrical wiring, turn off the oven and the circuit breaker for the kitchen. This practice will prevent painful burns, electrical shocks and fires. Never use a thinner wire than the recommended size, as a thinner wire can cause the unit to malfunction. Before using a new wall oven, hire a professional to test the electrical wiring system properly.

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