GFI electrical outlet tester question

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Old 03-05-04, 05:30 PM
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GFI electrical outlet tester question

I have one of those little red outlet plug tester that displays different combinations of LEDs depending on the condition of the outlet being tested. The instruction that came with it wasn't very clear so here's my question:

You plug in the tester and press the button on the tester and if everything is ok GFI outlet should trip? Is this correct? I tested the only GFI outlet that we have, and LEDs show that it's ok, but the outlet won't trip. Is the GFI outlet broken?
 
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Old 03-05-04, 05:37 PM
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Could be the GFCI is not grounded. Does the test button on the gfci work? If the tester does not show open ground then the receptacle might have a bootleg ground. That is an illegal connection between the ground and the neutral. It makes the receptacle look grounded but it is dangerous.
A GFCI is a valid replacement for old 2 prong receptacles. But not with a bootleg ground
 
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Old 03-05-04, 05:56 PM
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Yes, the test button on the GFCI outlet works. And the tester's LEDs indicate that the wiring is correct, but the tester won't trip the outlet.
 
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Old 03-05-04, 09:34 PM
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The internal test function on the GFCI proves that the receptacle is still providing protection. The external tester, however, needs a good ground to conduct this test. Since your tester does not show open ground, that suggests three possible explanations: (1) Your outlet tester is bad, or (2) You have an improper ground (e.g., a bootleg connection of the grounding screw to the load-side neutral)--good enough to fool the lights on the tester, but not good enough to allow its GFCI tester to work. (3) Line/load reversal on the GFCI installation.
 
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Old 03-08-04, 12:30 PM
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Problem fixed. Here's what happened:

There are three wires coming into the box. One of them is hot and the other two carries out. The hot wire and one of the two wires that carry out the power were connected to the Line side of GFCI outlet. I wire-nut-ed two load wires (?) and pigtailed into the Load side of the outlet and I connected the hot wire to the Line side of the outlet. Everything's working perfectly, now.

Thanks everyone.
 
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Old 03-21-04, 10:17 PM
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Originally posted by John Nelson
The internal test function on the GFCI proves that the receptacle is still providing protection. The external tester, however, needs a good ground to conduct this test. Since your tester does not show open ground, that suggests three possible explanations: (1) Your outlet tester is bad, or (2) You have an improper ground (e.g., a bootleg connection of the grounding screw to the load-side neutral)--good enough to fool the lights on the tester, but not good enough to allow its GFCI tester to work. (3) Line/load reversal on the GFCI installation.
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Hello... and yes.. Im a nube.. to this board. Ive done a lot of searching.. and thanks to you all, this is a great board/forum.. and finially got signed in.
.
In this post, am I to presume that if the GFCI outlet/receptical test/reset works, ie trips and resets with its led coming on, that that GFCI recepticle is protected... although, not Grounded, when I plug in my A.W.Sperry tester (with the 3 lites).. which shows an 'Open Ground'?
Ive done a little re-wiriing on this circuit..which controls 1/2 my kitchen and opposite bathroom..yet that circuit is NOT Grounded.
This is an OLD house, 1948 with 2 cable wiring. 1 Black, 1 Red.
Other parts of the house with same wiring is grounded. (!?!?!?)..From what Ive been able to determine, the BX lines from the Main Box, runs up to the attick where there are j-boxes to feed the different parts of the rooms below.
Im just trying to get a handle on what this set-up is all about, as Im doing some reno's on the front (old part) of the house and planning on extending some outlets to better suited locations.
Is that GFCI outlet (on the kitchen circuit) -at the end of the line ( I believe) protected without being 'grounded'
Thanks alot to all you pro's...
Being a 'handyman' ..Im able to do most things around our home.
Thanks in advance....
 
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