Pigtailing of neutral on 2 wire outlet

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  #1  
Old 08-04-07, 08:16 PM
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Pigtailing of neutral on 2 wire outlet

I've been mapping out the circuits in my house which was built/wired in the 50s. I noticed that on a middle of the run outlet the 2 black wires go to the 2 brass terminals, but the 2 white are pigtailed into a single wire which goes to one of the 2 silver terminals. What is the advantage of doing it this way (as opposed to connecting the 2 whites to 2 terminals)?
 
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Old 08-04-07, 08:18 PM
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I bet there is a pair of red wires spliced in that box as well.
 
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Old 08-04-07, 08:24 PM
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oak,

Advantages of pigtailing is that less subseptible for loose connections (when wrapped around wire) thus less chances of any arcing. Also, if you do have a loose wire being that of a neutral or hot then it will only affect that one receptacle as opposed to be the circuit go out. I heard some electricians will backstabb receptacles knowing that they will come loose and they'll get a call back from. I don't believe in this practice. There's no law saying that you have to wrap or not. Most licensed master electricians will argue the fact that side wiring is the only way to go. Just go through the posts in this forum and see how many people are having loose neutral trouble and all the time spent to find where it is.
 
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Old 08-04-07, 08:29 PM
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There were actually 3 other wires pigtailed together (not connected at all to the receptacle, which I left untouched. they looked black but could have been red. What's the scoop?
 
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Old 08-04-07, 08:31 PM
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appears to be a feed thru from maybe another circuit.
 
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Old 08-04-07, 09:22 PM
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If one chooses to pig-tail then one should, I think, pig-tail both the hot and the grounded conducter, provided of course that its not a split circuit or a multi-wire circuit.(brass tabs in place) This pig-tail is then of course wrapped around each respective silver and brass screw of the receptacle. Personally I prefer to use all 4 screws. Pig-tailing, if not done properly ( to twist or not to twist)can create a very hazardous condition. Personally I think just wrapping a big red wire nut around three 12 gauge wires, without first making a "beutifull" spiral twist can be very hazardous, as underneath the wire nut there well may be a very poor connection, causing over-heating and even eventually melting the wire nut. Back-stabs of course we all know, should be out-lawed. Every third call I go on here in my community of Orange County is a problem related to a overheated and or loose back-stab wire. I am a safety minded Novice or I should say I hope to become a sharp safety minded novice.
 
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Old 08-05-07, 05:34 AM
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"There were actually 3 other wires pigtailed together (not connected at all to the receptacle, which I left untouched. they looked black but could have been red. What's the scoop?"

That was my point. This may be part if a multi-wire circuit, in which case the neutrals must be pig tailed.
 
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Old 08-05-07, 07:15 AM
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speedey Peetey___Of course your'e right concerning a multi-wire circuit fed to a receptacle. Guess I better proof read my own stuff more or go back to my studies (lol) and stick to asking questions (lol). Love this site. It was my first attempt at responding and I guees I maybe only got a "C" (lol) Love your very short but confident responses Later
 
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