DIY Simple Steps to Wiring Your Electric Oven
I recently bought a Frigidaire electric oven to replace the old cook top unit that we had been scraping by with. Unfortunately, the wire that was used to power the old cook top was under sized for a fully functional oven. Not only that, but the breaker that the cook top ran off of was too small as well. This meant that I had to run new wire, replace the breaker, and put in an outlet for the oven to plug into. If you are in a similar situation, read on and I will explain the process I went through to wire my new oven.
Determine What You Need
First, you need to determine the power requirements of your oven. Then compare them to what you already have, and buy the proper supplies. Here are a few things you need to look at.
- Look for the current capacity on the power cord. Mine was 40 amps. In order to run 40 amps, you need at least #8 gauge wire. Hint: the smaller the wire gauge, the higher current it can carry. Look up the proper wire gauge for your oven's particular current rating.
- You then need to look at the plug you bought and see if it is three prongs or four. With three prongs you will need three copper conductors. With four prongs, you will need three copper conductors plus ground.
- Figure out where your breaker box is. Decide what rout you will take to get the wire from the breaker box to the oven. Approximate how many feet of wire you will need and make sure you buy some extra feet. It is terrible to come up a foot short.
You will also probably want to run your new oven off its own breaker. Check your breaker box and see what type of breakers it contains so you can get one to match the style you have. Also make sure that you have room for another breaker. You may be able replace an old breaker with a new one. In my case, I replaced the breaker previously used for the cook top with the new breaker for the oven. You will need a two pole breaker. You may need to purchase an outlet for your oven as well. Ovens run at 240V and have a special receptacle. Make sure you buy a receptacle that will fit your plug.
Wiring the Box to the Outlet
After you purchase the proper supplies, you are all set to start running new wire. Before you start any work on the electrical box, make sure you turn off power at the main breaker, or have a qualified person show you what safety precautions to take. It is a good idea at this point to use a voltmeter to make sure there is no power to the area you are working in. You may need a flashlight because you won’t have power for the lights. Install your new breaker and run the black and red wires to the two terminals. White and the ground conductor (if you needed it) will connect to the ground bar. Make sure you keep the oven breaker in the off position for the remainder of your wiring after you turn the main breaker back on. Rout the wire over to where you will put the outlet. This might be simple and easy, or difficult depending on your situation. To wire my oven, I wired the receptacle as shown below. If you have the ground conductor, it will also need to be connected to the appropriate terminal. Red and black are interchangeable as far as what terminals they connect to.
Your done! Now get cooking and enjoy your new oven. By the way, don’t forget to turn the breaker on for your oven.