Thread Number: 82423  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
Power requirements for vintage washers and dryers?
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Post# 1064735   3/26/2020 at 22:09 (1,429 days old) by revvinkevin (Tinseltown - Shakey Town - La-La Land)        

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Should an older (50's/60's/70's) washing machine have a 15 or 20 amp circuit?   What about a vintage 240V dryer? 

 

The plan is to run new circuits for a 1955 Frigidaire Unimatic washer & Filtrator dryer, a 1969 Lady Kenmore Combo (240V) and a number of other machines. I'm also running additional water & drain lines so I don't have to heft washers around on a dolly, or play the multiple-extension cord game.

 

During my 2012 Spring Wash-In I had 4 older washers plugged into (1 circuit I think?) and with 3 of them running, the breaker would trip when the '55 Unimatic started to spin.  (I currently have 5 newer FL washers plugged into that same circuit and all 5 can be running w/o tripping the breaker.)

 

A friend who shall remain nameless (Thomas) is pushing for this so (he / I) can have the ability to walk up to any machine in the garage, put laundry in and start it.  Personally I don't know that every machine needs to be hooked up, so lets see how far this goes.  tongue-out

 

Thanks!

Kevin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





Post# 1064738 , Reply# 1   3/26/2020 at 22:42 (1,429 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

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I can run both of my Kenmore portables on the same circuit without tripping the breaker but I usually plug them directly into the wall outlet or use a heavy duty extension cord if I want to run them but I still prefer to have them plugged directly into the wall outlet.

I wouldn’t want to plug a Maytag into a extension cord and I did that with my very first Maytag A209 washer in 2015 and I ended up killing the motor since it didn’t like being plugged into a extension cord and I sadly no longer have the Maytag A209 and I ended up getting the Maytag A810 set as a replacement for that washer


Post# 1064739 , Reply# 2   3/26/2020 at 22:42 (1,429 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

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I can run both of my Kenmore portables on the same circuit without tripping the breaker but I usually plug them directly into the wall outlet or use a heavy duty extension cord if I want to run them but I still prefer to have them plugged directly into the wall outlet.

I wouldn’t want to plug a Maytag into a extension cord and I did that with my very first Maytag A209 washer in 2015 and I ended up killing the motor since it didn’t like being plugged into a extension cord and I sadly no longer have the Maytag A209 and I ended up getting the Maytag A810 set as a replacement for that washer


Post# 1064740 , Reply# 3   3/26/2020 at 22:43 (1,429 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

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Ignore duplicate post

Post# 1064741 , Reply# 4   3/26/2020 at 23:00 (1,429 days old) by CircleW (NE Cincinnati OH area)        

Kevin, if you are going to have a separate circuit for each washer, 15 amp is fine. If two washers per circuit, I'd use a 20 amp circuit. Regardless, use #12 copper wire.

Almost all electric dryers (new or old) specify a 30 amp 240 volt circuit (#10 copper). An exception would be the high speed Kenmore, which requires a 50 amp circuit (#6 copper) to use the full heat.


Post# 1064752 , Reply# 5   3/27/2020 at 00:17 (1,429 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        

The Frigidaire Unimatic machines draw a full 15 amps when they drop into the start windings at the start of spin when the motor is almost at a dead stall. Consumer reports used to advise that these machines should be on their own circuit and it should be protected by what was called in the 50s, a "slow blow" fuse. Most modern circuit breakers will accommodate the heavy draw for a few seconds.

Post# 1064766 , Reply# 6   3/27/2020 at 05:51 (1,429 days old) by thomasortega (El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles de Porciúncula)        

Unnamed, moi? LOL

Kevin, just look everything I have at Six Flags.

In my case i have 2x 20A circuits.

1) Samtag, Magic Chef, Ez-rinse, Silk Lux, Grandma.'Tag, Baby 'Tag, LG, Mini Whirlpool wringer, Thin Twin, World Washer, Ultra mate and Calypso, Mojave and Magic Chef dryer. Note that Samtag and LG have internal heaters.

2) Samsung washer, Skinny Mini impersonator, Marathon washer, Catalyst, Niagara, Hotpoint portable, that round prototype, Mrs. Tag, (gap waiting for Frigidaire Gallery), Samsung Dryer, Marathon Dryer.


I can use all washers at the same time, (NO DRYERS), unless I'm using both samtag and LG on sanitary cycle.
On the other circuit, I can use all washers at the same time but 1) Marathon and Skinny Mini can't spin at the same time if all the other washers are running and 2) if I have Marathon, Samsung and Mrs. Tag dryers running, plus the samsung washer running on sanitary, i can't let the Marathon washer spin and 3) I can't start all dryers exactly at the same time. (I wait at least 30 seconds before starting the next dryer)

All that said, I have an issue much worse than lack of electrical circuits. My water heater. I have only one 50 gal. unit.

During the winter it's impossible to run all washers at the same time. The heater is enough to fill the Marathon, Ultra mate or the Catalyst with hot water, plus one of the front loaders. When I start the third washer, using only hot, the water is already warm (great for light colors). a fourth washer will start filling warm and complete filling with cold (so the water will be lukewarm, more to the cold side, perfect for delicates. a fifth washer is unthinkable because water will be super cold.

During the summer I can use one washer more with hot water and one more with warm. (so 2 loads more at the same time).

Thanks to this limitation, i have to wait until the first washer finishes filling the rinse to then start another washer. this ends up cycling the washers to gradually start using the dryers.

Other thing that helps me a lot is the laundry sink. as I can't have all machines draining at the same time, I already learned a perfect timing to synchronize the washers in a way that they don't drain at the same time. When the Marathon drains (and draw a lot), other washers are filling for the rinse.

I won't consider the 240v machines you have, only the 120v.

Two circuits will me more than enough for you as soon as you wait until a maytag starts agitating before you start the next. this will make the spins always be 2-minute apart from each other. But you can't use the 120v Mieles on sanitary.

You can use the Frigidaire, but ignore most of the others in the same circuit or again, synchronize in a way that it spins when the others are filling for the rinse.

The only thing you really need to focus is "start the next washer when the previous finishes filling".

And again.... Unless you have a wash-in, I really doubt you'll use ALL the washers at the same time. In 3 years here, I used them all only once because i had the roommate's clothes to wash, plus those loads that I rarely have (duvet, blankets because i had a guest, sofa liner, rugs, all at the same time) and you know, I'm kinda OCD sorting clothes.

In your case, AFAIK, you usually have 7 loads per washday (same as I do), eventually 1 or 2 loads more to wash at the same time. Considering the 240v Mieles, plus the first wall, i really doubt you'll have anything left for the 3rd and 4th walls and, if you decide to use the 3rd or 4th walls, the first wall will probably be off.

And... you'll be limited by the water heater recovery time anyway. unless you wash in cold.


Post# 1064767 , Reply# 7   3/27/2020 at 06:03 (1,429 days old) by thomasortega (El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles de Porciúncula)        

And yes, the main idea on Disneyland is keeping them all in perfect order and connected, so you can simply walk in and choose what toy you want to play with.

I'll consider myself "satisfied" only the day I see even the Apex fully restored and running and the coin op westies ready to be used...

And don't forget we need to find a "Kevin-ator" pair to give them a special highlight.

Note to add:

My original idea (that subpanel) I was thinking of pulling FIVE 20A circuits together with the 3 240V circuits. There will be plenty of space for more circuit breakers when the new panel is ready.


Post# 1064853 , Reply# 8   3/27/2020 at 21:09 (1,428 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Power Requirements For Vintage US Laundry Appliances

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20 Amp circuits are best for the 120 volt washer circuits, although if you are willing to have a separate circuit for every washer you can get away with 15 Amp 120 volt circuits.

 

All vintage electric dryers work well on a 30 Amp 240 single phase circuit with only about 3 exceptions where a 40 Amp circuit is required for a few KM and a Philco Hi wattage dryer.

 

You can usually get away with two washers running at the same time on the 20 Amp circuits, but you can only run one dryer at a time on the 30 Amp circuits.

 

John L.


Post# 1065115 , Reply# 9   3/29/2020 at 19:38 (1,426 days old) by LowEfficiency (Iowa)        

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We just went through this at our place.

My region follows the 2017 NEC, so for two washers and two electric dryers, that resulted in 2x 20A 120V circuits with both GFCI and AFCI protection for the washers, and 2x 30A 240V circuits (standard breakers) for the dryers.

The 20A washer circuits are "designated" (not "dedicated"), so if anyone ever switched to a gas dryer, the dryer could share the same 120V circuit with the washer, and therefore a duplex receptacle was allowed. But each washer needed to have its own circuit, and the room was required to have a separate circuit for other general-use receptacles.

Sounds overkill, but in the end it's only a small change in cost/time to pull four wires instead of two through the conduit. The biggest expense are those dual-function breakers... $50/each.




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