Why are my duplex outlets wired this way?

Reply

  #1  
Old 02-13-09, 11:04 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 19
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Why are my duplex outlets wired this way?

I'm replacing some duplex outlets, and all of the ones I've done so far have two pairs of hot/neutral wires coming into the box. Both sets are connected to the same breaker circuit. One pair is wired to the top set of screws, the other set is wired to the bottom set of screws. However... the tabs on the outlets are not broken off.

It seems these outlets have redundant wiring, which leaves me wondering: Is this a common way to wire a house, and if so, why?

Thanks
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 02-14-09, 12:44 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
How did you determine both sets are hot? You didn;t use one of those non-contact testers did you?
 
  #3  
Old 02-14-09, 04:20 AM
Member
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: VA.
Posts: 813
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
That should be the way they are wired. They are "daisy chained" like that in order to continue the circuit.

If the tabs are broken then receptacles downstream wouldn't be getting any power. The only time tabs are broken is with a multi-wire branch circuit(should be on a double pole breaker now) or an SCR(switch controlled receptacle)

The only ones with 1 set of conductors in them will be the last one on the circuit.
 
  #4  
Old 02-14-09, 09:31 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 19
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks for the replies, that clears things up considerably. I had assumed the wires were parallel coming from the breaker, but they are daisy-chained instead.

Is there any common practice for connecting the wires, eg. upstream to the top screws, downstream to the bottom screws? Not that I would depend on that to determine what is hot and what isn't... but if there's a common practice, I'd like to follow it.
 
  #5  
Old 02-14-09, 09:54 AM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New England
Posts: 10,483
Received 33 Votes on 30 Posts
first, the receptacles are still in parallel even though their sequence is one after the other, daisy chain.

second is I like to wirenut my incoming and outgoing together with a pigtail over to the receptacle. Any issues with the screw connections or the tabs and it only affects that one receptacle, rather than everything down line. If you think about how many connections something plugged into that last outlet has to go through, it makes sense to use as few as possible. Opinions vary

Bud
 
  #6  
Old 02-14-09, 12:41 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Is there any common practice for connecting the wires, eg. upstream to the top screws, downstream to the bottom screws?
No. Most of the time the person connecting up the receptacle doesn't even know or care which is which.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: