Do they all get GFCI outlets

Old 02-13-09, 08:41 PM
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Do they all get GFCI outlets

I have a small house (built 1956) I would like to change the 2 wire outlets to 3 wire. I heard i can do this with GFCI outlets.
Wireing them accordingly (line/load) with the first outlet on the circuit ,,so they protect the other outlets downstream on that given circuit. 4 of the 14 outlets have 2 romex cables running into the outlets boxes. The other 10 have 1 romex cable running into the outlet boxes.

* Do the outlet boxes with 1 cable running into them necessarily mean the other end goes directly back to the breaker box/panel?

* Outlet boxes are all metal/aluminum and measure 2-1/4"DX2"WX3"H with no armored or BX conduit.

Thank you to all replys electrician or diy'ers!
Old 02-13-09, 08:49 PM
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* Do the outlet boxes with 1 cable running into them necessarily mean the other end goes directly back to the breaker box/panel?
No. It may be the last receptacle on the circuit. Once you have matched every receptacle and light to a circuit breaker you will know for sure.
Old 02-13-09, 08:52 PM
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GFCI protection legally allows you to use 3-hole receptacles, but they don't provide grounding if none is there (although with metal boxes, you might already have grounding if all the boxes are connected using metal conduit).

There are a variety of wiring patterns that were used in the old days. In some of them, there are no "downstream" outlets.

If a box only has one set of wires running into it, it may be because it's the end of the line, or it may be that it was "octopus" wired with all wires running from a common place (often the light fixture in the center of the room). In either case, there's nothing downstream. There may or may not be anything upstream. Read on.

Figuring out what is downstream from what normally involves trial and error. If you remove one of those outlets with two sets of wires in the box, and separate all the wires from each other, then everything that is still dead when you turn the breaker back on is downstream. You can then put that receptacle back, wiring it exactly as it was before, and conduct the experiment again with another outlet. Keep good notes and eventually you'll understand how the wires are routed.

Your boxes are pretty small. You may have trouble getting a GFCI to fit, especially if there is more than one set of wires.

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