Yes, you may connect the ground and neutral together as long as this is a replacement in an exsisting dwelling,for new construction you must have a four wire circuit with separate neutral and grounding conductor.It was never the intention of the code to make home owners replace exsisting three wire circuits with four wire when replacing equipment. .
The new cooktop has a 4 wire connection. Red & Black are hot. White is neutral, and green is ground. You existing panel is wired with 3 wires. Black & Red are hot and green is ground. There is no neutral wire. Connect the black to black, red to red, and then connect the white and ground together at the plug.
Typical voltage to a residential cooktop would be 208 V. It is usually a three or four wire hookup. The wires will go to a two pole circuit breaker. A black wire will connect to one pole of the circuit breaker, a red wire to the other pole on the circuit breaker. The white wire is the neutral and the green wire is the ground. Always consult an electrician if you're not sure!
The electrical code states that the only place that the ground wire comes into contact with the neutral wire is at the distribution panel. All other circuits connected to the distribution panel require the ground to come back as a separate wire. No where in the field wiring must a neutral wire connect to a ground wire.
If you have to connect the neutral to ground to make the circuit work then you have an open neutral in your circuit. Be careful in handling the neutral as there can be voltage potential on the neutral if a load is connected. In a properly wired home that has been inspected by the local electrical inspector the neutral should be bonded to the ground at the main service distribution point. There will be a green screw that projects through the neutral bus and is threaded into the back of the electrical panel. This should be the one and only place in the whole electrical system where this neutral to ground connection takes place. Dangerous!!!!! The ground is the safety to prevent you from getting shocked due to a malfunctioning piece of equipment. By using the ground for a neutral you will be energizing the entire ground system of you house or business. Thus anything with metal on it and a ground wire going to it will be electrified if the ground fails at the breaker box or building ground rod. Do you want to take this risk? Not I..........
A bare grounded neutral should never get close to the ground if it is wired properly. When the neutral leaves the meter base it is in conduit and should enter into the distribution panel where it connects to the neutral buss. It is at this junction that the copper ground wire is connected after coming from the outside ground rod or ground plate which ever grounding system was used.
Ground and neutral should only be connected at the main electric panel to prevent parallel neutral currents. If it is a new installation, you must provide four wires (two hots, 1 neutral, & 1 ground) and connect to the four separate (appropriate) places on the dryer. If it is an existing installation and it only has three wires (two hots and a neutral) connect the neutral to both the neutral and ground connection of the dryer (the National Electrical Code allows this exception for older homes). Call a qualified electrician to do any electrical work.
It is very rare to have three-phase electricity coming into a residence. One of the wires is probably the neutral (It will be white or black with white stripes.) The ground comes in from a ground rod near the main, and connects to the ground coming from the meter, AND (If the main fuse box is the first disconnecting means,) the neutral and ground bars have to be bonded together in the box.
Yes, the bulb will light up.However, and this is critical, it is illegal (at least in the US and Canada) to connect a load between hot and ground. You have to connect the load between hot and neutral. (Or between hot and hot.) Ground is reserved for protective earth ground, i.e. chassis or frame ground, and you are not allowed to pass operating current on ground.
You connect neutral and earth ground together at a distribution transformer because neutral is supposed to be at ground potential. The two are also connected at each distribution panel. Even so, current return is via neutral, not ground - any other path reflects a ground fault, which is an unsafe condition. The purpose in connecting neutral to ground is so that faults in devices that cause hot to ground current paths either trip a GFCI breaker, or they trip an ordinary breaker for the case where fault current is high. Excessive hot to neutral currents also trip breakers - instantaneous for short circuits - and timed for moderate overloads that last beyond the inrush time limit. If you did not connect neutral to ground, and all of the local grounds were also open, then the hot legs could rise to the primary voltage. In a 13.2kv US system, the primary is 7.6kv to ground, star configuration. That amount of voltage inside a building, connected to devices expecting 120, 240, or 480 volts, would be catastophic and extremely hazardous.
You have some serious wiring problems, for sure. My first guess is that your grounding conductor and neutral are touching somewhere and your ground is acting as the neutral when the neutral is disconnected. The light coming on when the hair dryer is used is another mystery. You need to hire a competent electrician to trouble shoot these problems.
As the neutral point of an electrical supply system is often connected to earth ground, ground and neutral are closely related. Under certain conditions, a conductor used to connect to a system neutral is also used for grounding (earthing) of equipment and structures. Current carried on a grounding conductor can result in objectionable or dangerous voltages appearing on equipment enclosures, so the installation of grounding conductors and neutral conductors is carefully defined in electrical regulations. Where a neutral conductor is used also to connect equipment enclosures to earth, care must be taken that the neutral conductor never rises to a high voltage with respect to local ground.
If you have a missing neutral you have a problem that needs to be corrected. You cannot connect to the ground because you will create potential ground loops. Unless you can provide more information you need an electrician. I guess he could be up to the new code and have an empty neutral pulled to a switch box? Who knows......
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