Still No Dryer

May 12, 2007

My dryer saga continues. Home Despot says they don’t have a 220-to-120v wall converter. And even if they did, I’m not certain the fire department would be happy with it. (I tried calling the number they’d left with the inspection notice to clarify, but nobody answered. Maybe Monday.) Meanwhile, the guy at Home Depot advised me to try an “electrical supply house.” Or something.

I called my landlord and gave him an update. I concluded my remarks by saying we were rapidly coming to a two option situation: a) I get a new dryer, b) he installs me a new outlet. He went for option c), call the fire department on Monday to get some more detail.

So I’m out two afternoons, some gas, $13 for the appliance cord that I cannot use, and my good humor. Plus I have laundry to do. My neighbors graciously allowed me to use their dryer – and I did, twice. But I don’t want to continue doing that. My kids are arriving for the week tomorrow, and their presence means an increased laundry volume.

One ray of hope: a few google searches eventually found me this bit of advice:

Q: I would like to know if I can convert 220 volts to 110 volts without using a step down transformer?

A: Short answer is: “yes”, you can do this without a step down transformer.

To give you a specific answer I would have to know the exact application and the specific situation. However, the most common example would be replacing an electric range or dryer to a natural gas unit that now only requires 120V power.

In this example, you have some choices.

Option One
You can purchase an adapter plug that inserts in to the existing 125/250V outlet and converts it to a 15A 120V regular outlet complete with overload protection in the form of a pop-up breaker, or a simple fuse.

Unfortunately, I cannot seem to locate the item referred to in “Option One.” Option Two was a bunch of rewiring, which I’m clearly not qualified to do, nor inclined to do on a property I don’t own.


No comments yet

  1. Scott:

    If your dryer works fine, getting a new one is ridiculous.

    I would really push your landlord to install or convert to the proper outlet. More info from the inspector sounds like a stall tactic, but I would comply and then make it clear that since he provides the gas line for a gas dryer, he also needs to provide the proper electrical service for that appliance.

    Running an extension cord to a permanently installed appliance, especially one below grade and of higher current capacity, is not acceptable. Shock hazard during flooding also becomes a big issue. Converting the outlet would be cheaper than adding or moving the existing gas line closer to the available 110v outlet, with less interruption to the building tenants.

    Till this is resolved, you might want to invest in a clothes line.

  2. The extension cord was run overhead, not on the floor. Flooding would not have been an issue.

    But you’re right. I think eventually he’ll install the outlet.

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