When using this device for heavy appliances like washing machines and microwaves, it should be connected to a dedicated 20-amp/120-volt circuit breaker. As of 2014, a GFCI receptacle is now required in a laundry room for the washing machine.
When replacing an ungrounded, polarized receptacle use this type and not the grounded type above, unless it is grounded by a jumper wire to a metal outlet box that is tied to the house service panel ground through a continuos metal conduit.
The neutral wire provides a return path for the circuit and the ground wire provides extra protection from electrocution not found on older 30 amp, 240 volt appliance hookups.
This is an older version of the receptacle in the first diagram. The slots are different sizes to accept polarized plugs, but it lacks a grounding slot. This device does not make use of a ground wire. There is no protection against electrocution as provide by the grounded receptacle.
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