It is believed that words in phraseological units preserve old variant of stress, which is supported by orthoepic dictionaries. For example, in the phraseological unit voleyu sudeb, the obsolete variant sudéb is recommended instead of the modern. However, the results of the experiment with speakers of standard pronunciation show that many recommendations given by the dictionaries should be changed since some phraseological units contain words with stress variation. The experiment includes 28 phraseological units which were divided into 5 groups: 1) word stress in phraseological units and in free phrases is different in the dictionaries, but the same in the speech; 2) word stress in phraseological units and in free phrases is different in the dictionaries, but the stress in phraseological units varies; 3) dictionaries show word stress variability in free phrases and only one variant in phraseological units, but in speech variability is present in both cases; 4) word stress in phraseological units and in free phrases is different in the dictionaries as is in speech; 5) word forms are typically used in phraseological units, the stress could be infl uenced by meaning associations. The article contains the analyses of each group.