Can I hook up my electric dryer to my generator? ?

I asked this before and got some weird answers. NO! I’m not looking to make a “Suicide Cord.” I’m simply trying to dry my clothes. This pic is of my generator. I have a 3 prong dryer outlet. Thank you. 

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  • 1 month ago
    Favourite answer

    Certainly. The same receptacle is sometimes used for household dryer receptacles at 120/240V and under 30A, where you need a "twist-locking" connection.

    All you need is a way to adapt your dryer cord to the receptacle, which says it is an L14-30R rated for 30A.

    There are numerous off-the-shelf adapters for that.

    If you want a cheaper solution yuou can buy the plug at many hardware stores or order it online and wire it in place of your existing plug, or build an adapter from a 3-prong receptacle and the required L14-30 plug. 

    We can only guess whether your generator has enough power to run the dry. Mine does, at 15kw, but I don't know about yours.

    Source(s): https://www.amazon.com/L14-30P-Generator-3-Prong-R... L14-30 generator adapter to 10-30R
  • John P
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    I assume that you are in the USA and that your generator puts out 110 volts in alternating current (a/c) and that your dryer uses 110 volts a/c. Check the output of your generator in watts or amps and check that your dryer is not of higher wattage or ampage. If your dryer is higher in power requirements then do not use it with that generator.

    In Britain I am not familiar with the concept of a 4 prong outlet, so do take note of the other answers which refer to the 4 prongs.

  • Andy C
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Yes,  but only if you have a 4 prong outlet on the generator or if you like playing with fire, you could hook up 2 separate hot wires from the gennie and one neutral and one ground to the dryer.

    If your generator has separate outlet circuits AND is rated for the wattage of the dryer (30k?)

  • 1 month ago

    Todd: The short answer is YES, you can do it. But the long answer is no. You don't give us enough info to give you sound advice. I'm guessing that is a 240VAC-30 amp twist lock receptacle on your generator in the photo. How many watts does your generator make, and it would be good to know the duty cycle as well. You say you have a 3 prong dryer outlet, Is it a gas dryer that uses 120VAC, or an electric that requires 240VAC? Both type have 3 prongs, but are quite different. We'll assume its 240 volt.  If your gen is at least a 6 or 7 thousand watt unit, it should do it. If you know the gens duty cycle, do the math. example of a 50% duty cycle: 50% of 10 minutes = 5 minutes. That means your gen can power your dryer for 5 minutes before it will start to over heat. You will then have to let it sit for 5 minutes at idle to cool down before restarting the drying. The cord on the dryer, if its flat with 3 conductors, the 2 on the outside should be the hots and the center the ground / neutral. Looking at your photo of the receptacle, the "bottom" slot with the extra cutout is the ground, the 2 sides are the hot, and the top is neutral. Buy a plug and hook it up accordingly, or..if you feel like living on the edge, just insert the wires in the correct slots. I don't recommend that, but it can be done, just make sure everything is off before you start.  Don't use a generator inside. If your dryer is in your garage or on a porch, start the gen, then start the dryer. Good luck and for goodness sake be careful.

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    The dryer should be 4 prong.  3 prong is used on electric stoves.  Also there is a set pattern for the dryer you can't change .  So your generator is worth nothing.  Have you tried a sunny day and an outside clothes line strung from house to a tree?  That has worked for Thousands of years.

  • Mr. P
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    It would work but is terribly inefficient. If you need a generator because you have no power it would be better to use a gas powered dryer or dry your clothes on a rack in front of a heater or open fire. (Use a fire guard and keep an eye on it). I grew up with a clothes horse around a coal fire to dry clothes.

  • Edwena
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    If the plugs don't fit, it won't work.   The plugs are made to keep you from plugging in the wrong thing. 

  • 1 month ago

    read the dryer's power requirements off the rear label.  chances are NO! ... home generators aren't near powerful enough

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    No you do not. 

  • 1 month ago

    You can't plug a 3 prong cord into that outlet.

    If the generator has that outlet, my recommendation is to upgrade the home outlet to a 4 prong outlet and replace the existing cord on the dryer.

    As you didn't say anything about the wattage of the generator, we can only GUESS if it will handle the dryer.

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