Ground existing circuit for outlets

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Old 03-04-09, 11:39 AM
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Ground existing circuit for outlets

I am setting up a home office where I would like to have a computer set up. The problem I have is non of the outlets are grounded. Is there an easy way to ground these outlets without having to pull all new wire? If so, how would I work this in with the existing wiring? I really do not want to run conduit around the wall or cut out sheet rock to run new wiring if possible.

Thanks for any information in advance.
 
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Old 03-04-09, 12:54 PM
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More than likely you're out of luck.

But do you want to open a can of worms? Some houses are wired with conduit which can serve as a ground. Some houses are wired with "BX" cable which may be suitable for use as a ground. Some outlets are full of old wires with brittle insulation that does not like to be disturbed.

If you dare, turn off the circuit breaker and remove the plate on the receptacle. IF things don't look too hairy, unscrew the receptacle mounting screws and pull it out. Take a few photos, put them on photobucket, and post the links here.
 
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Old 03-04-09, 03:11 PM
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Same with my home office. It's actually 100-yr-old knob and tube wiring, totally ungrounded. I replaced the outlets with GFIs and put the "no ground" stickers on them. As far as I know, the code allows this. Computers and UPS run fine.

(Later this summer I will run a subpanel up to my attic and rip out all the K&T for good.)

Hope this helps.
 
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Old 03-04-09, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by demolition_man View Post
I replaced the outlets with GFIs and put the "no ground" stickers on them. As far as I know, the code allows this.
Yes the code allows this for safety.

Computers and UPS run fine.
The problem is that your surge protectors either won't work or will be less effective without the ground wire, so you're at a somewhat higher risk of losing some equipment during a lightning storm.
 
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Old 03-08-09, 03:07 PM
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Thanks for the help. I ended up just running a new 20 amp circuit from the breaker panel to the office using conduit along the wall. It doesn't look too bad and it is grounded. I feel better about hooking up my computers in there now.
 
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