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Is Your Electric Clothes Dryer Shocking You?


By Dave Rongey - Summary:

How to Check a Dryer Electric Circuit: Troubleshooting Dryer Electrical Wiring Connections. I have a 3 prong dryer outlet and I connected it but when I plug in the dryer it shocks me when I touch it.

Faulty Electric Dryer Connections May Cause Dangerous Shocks!

Electrical Question: Why am I getting shocked by my electric dryer?

This electrical wiring question came from: Michael, a Handyman from Hanford, California.
See more about Electrical Wiring for California

Additional Comments: This website is very helpful for people like me, Thank You.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical safety question Michael.
This question describes a very dangerous condition that needs  to be corrected right away.

How to Check a Dryer Circuit for a Wiring Problem

electric dryer wiring

Application: Testing 240 Volt Dryer Circuit.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with hand tools and electrical troubleshooting skills.
Precaution: Identify the circuit, turn it OFF and then Tag it with a Note before making inspections or wiring modifications.
Note: Electrical troubleshooting is best performed by a qualified electrical contractor

Troubleshooting Dryer Electrical Wiring Connections

More about Wiring a Clothes Dryer

Dryer Wiring

Electrical Wiring for a Clothes Dryer
Wiring a Dryer

For more information about 220 Volt Wiring Diagram
220 Volt Wiring Diagram
220 Volt Wiring Diagram



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FAQs Frequently Asked Questions and Comments

6 Responses to “Is Your Electric Clothes Dryer Shocking You?”
  1. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Latisha,
    Leave the dryer circuit turned off and keep the dryer unplugged. A dryer repair technician should be called to identify the problem with the dryer and determine the extent of the necessary repairs. The technician should make sure the dryer vent is not clogged and any accumulation of lint should be removed to provide proper ventilation.
    I hope this helps,
    Dave

  2. latisha says:

    Hi, my dryer started to smoke and tried to catch fire. I quickly turned it off along with the breaker. It is still shocking me though and I unplugged it after that. What should I do?

  3. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Frank,
    The dryer circuit should be turned off right away. Next the cause of the sparking in the back area of the dryer will need to be inspected and repaired. The dryer circuit electrical wiring and the receptacle outlet should be carefully examined. Once the repairs have been made then the circuit components should be tested to make sure it is OK before the dryer is to be used again. Please reference the dryer section for more information about wiring a dryer circuit and receptacle.
    I hope this helps,
    Dave

  4. Frank says:

    My electric dryer was sparking in the back until it stopped working. I plugged a new dryer in and the bottom of the frame feels like there is electricity running through it.

  5. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Samantha,
    Cold weather can definitely be a factor where static electricity may be more frequently noticed because cold weather can make the air very dry. The ingredients in the fabric softener may have an influence as well. However I would encourage you to have the dryer circuit checked to make sure it is properly grounded and that the electrical ground and bonding at the main service panel is correct. If everything checks out OK then you may want to consider using a cling free product with your clothes dryer.
    Dave

  6. Samantha Hoslkins says:

    YES! have a gas dryer 2-3 years now, nothing has changed except it has recently started shocking me and my dry clothes seem to be full of extra static. Using same soap and fabric softener, both are the more expensive name brands, as I said, nothing has changed but the weather! Good lord, have a load of blankets in now, couldn’t put it off any longer and I’m scared to death!