Replaced Electrical Outlet Problem

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Old 05-30-10, 08:41 PM
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Replaced Electrical Outlet Problem

I have an electrical outlet i replaced that is not working, and as well, it has caused no electricity in the bedroom next door.

This is a 1950's house with a new circuit breaker box. The wires in outlets look original - they are thick copper with a semi-frayed kind of fabric around them...probably due to age.

what i did: I began by replacing a lightswitch and an old two-prong outlet that is controlled by same lightswitch in my office room. I replaced two-prong with 20 amp 3-prong outlet. The old two prong electrical outlet had no ground (i believe)...just two wires (capped into one) attached to one screw on one side of old outlet, and then a single wire attached to other side of old outlet. I divided capped wires and screwed each into the screws on one side of new outlet, and screwed single wire onto one screw on other side of outlet. I did not use the ground screw. bThe replaced light switch and companion outlet work.

Then I went to the outlet on a different wall in the same room that is now not working. It has been working fine before I started this, but I did not check it to see if it was still working after replacing the first outlet on the other wall. Could it be that the feeder part to the former outlet caused this one and the others down the line not to work...? Or did I do something wrong with this particular second outlet replacement? It does seem that the outlets and light switches 'beyond' this one do not work due to something i did.

Regarding this second wall outlet (no companion lightswitch) There were four wires coming out, two pairs...no ground, I believe. I replaced to look the same as the one i removed. The outlet did not work, and the electricity in the room nextdoor (bedroom) now does not work. I tried numerous times switching the wires from either side to the other side of the new outlet, but nothing has work. Very frustrating! I even tried a different new three prong outlet, thinking the first one may have been faulty. Now I am wondering if the problem with this outlet was caused by the first outlet i replaced...help?

I believe my electrical system feeds from one box to the next and this is why the electrical in next room is affected, but i do not know what to do! The light switch and companion outlet I first replaced still work.

I hope someone can help me, as i cannot afford an electrician.

Thanks for your time.
 
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Old 05-31-10, 12:04 AM
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Originally Posted by spinto1 View Post
I have an electrical outlet i replaced that is not working, and as well, it has caused no electricity in the bedroom next door.

This is a 1950's house with a new circuit breaker box. The wires in outlets look original - they are thick copper with a semi-frayed kind of fabric around them...probably due to age.

what i did: I began by replacing a lightswitch and an old two-prong outlet that is controlled by same lightswitch in my office room. I replaced two-prong with 20 amp 3-prong outlet. The old two prong electrical outlet had no ground (i believe)...just two wires (capped into one) attached to one screw on one side of old outlet, and then a single wire attached to other side of old outlet. I divided capped wires and screwed each into the screws on one side of new outlet, and screwed single wire onto one screw on other side of outlet. I did not use the ground screw. bThe replaced light switch and companion outlet work.
Ok ., Did you make a note of the way the switch is hook up ? If you understand what switch loop is ? the switch loop will only have two conductors only in the switchbox.

If that not the case you should see black , white et red conductor in the switch box if you see red that can be used for the switched half dupexes or one or two full duplex recetple switch function.

Look at the duplex recepetale if you have red conductor in there if so you will have to do the extra step in there.

Then I went to the outlet on a different wall in the same room that is now not working. It has been working fine before I started this, but I did not check it to see if it was still working after replacing the first outlet on the other wall. Could it be that the feeder part to the former outlet caused this one and the others down the line not to work...? Or did I do something wrong with this particular second outlet replacement? It does seem that the outlets and light switches 'beyond' this one do not work due to something i did.

Regarding this second wall outlet (no companion lightswitch) There were four wires coming out, two pairs...no ground, I believe. I replaced to look the same as the one i removed. The outlet did not work, and the electricity in the room nextdoor (bedroom) now does not work. I tried numerous times switching the wires from either side to the other side of the new outlet, but nothing has work. Very frustrating! I even tried a different new three prong outlet, thinking the first one may have been faulty. Now I am wondering if the problem with this outlet was caused by the first outlet i replaced...help?

I believe my electrical system feeds from one box to the next and this is why the electrical in next room is affected, but i do not know what to do! The light switch and companion outlet I first replaced still work.

I hope someone can help me, as i cannot afford an electrician.

Thanks for your time.
Read my comment first and also the other thing if your oringal NM cable do not have grounding wire in there at all you must use the new non grounding duplex recepetale or use the grounding dupex receptale but put a sticker on saying " no equiment ground " that the only two way it can be legit.

Merci,Marc
 
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Old 05-31-10, 03:34 AM
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so...

Marc,

Thanks for your note...so if I understand you correctly, I must replace 2-prong with 2-prong...? All of the wires in boxes are black insullated around copper (due to age of house, I guess) - I cannot differentiate colors. No ground wires...What about GFIC (is that the grounded version i need to put sticker on...?)

And why can I not change to a three-prong?

Also, at which outlet am I getting the problem of electricity chain being broken - is it the first outlet i replaced successfully (meaning the outlet it live) or the second one I did not get electricity from after replacing...?

Thanks,
Emily
 
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Old 05-31-10, 06:23 AM
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There are only certain cases where a 2 prong receptacle can be replaced with 3 prong according to the electrical code. One way is to install GFI protection and then mark all the other receptacles "No Equipment Ground".

A non-contact voltage detector could help you identify the hot conductor in your cables. You could also use a regular voltage type detector you would need an extension ground and find a grounded reference.
 
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