Ungrounded Outlets

Reply

  #1  
Old 01-21-01, 11:25 AM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
I want to buy a 1956 house that has outlets that are 2 slot receptacles. I want to use a 3 prong attachment to plug in items that have 3 prong plugs. If the wallplate screw is not grounded what is my options to ground this receptacle? One three slot plug in house states with tester that it is a open ground. I didn't check with a circuit tester just a plug tester so couldn't check the two slot outlets. Suggestions please?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 01-21-01, 02:42 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
There are no simple options to ground an ungrounded recepticle. The only solution is to run a grounding wire from the recepticle all the way back to the main panel. For a few outlets, this might be reasonable. For a whole house, this would be very expensive.

But it depends on what you want to accomplish. If you want true grounding (e.g., because you need to use a surge suppressor to protect computer equipment), then you have no choice but to do the above.

However, if you just need to use three-prong plugs, then code allows you to do so if you protect the circuit with a GFCI outlet somewhere earlier in the circuit. One GFCI outlet will allow you to replace all downstream outlets with three-prong outlets. However, this isn't true grounding.

What are you trying to accomplish?
 
  #3  
Old 01-22-01, 08:44 AM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Thanks for your reply, I am looking for a quick, easy, safe and less expensive way to protect computer and TV equipment etc. Untill at which time I can pull new wire back to the box. I have up to date circuit panel and only need the outlets taken care of. I have a total of about 12 outlets that I'm needing to do but really only about 2 outlets that need immediate attention. Recommended estimate of pulling new wire and such in a small house with attic and crawl space would be? Thanks for your response in advance.
Mike
 
  #4  
Old 01-22-01, 10:09 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fayetteville, NY, USA
Posts: 1,052
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
One thing not mentioned is that if you replace 2-prong receptacles with a GFCI, or do as John said and place one earlier in the circuit and change those downstream to regular 3-prongs, each 3-prong that has no ground must bear a label that says "No equipment ground", according to the National Electrical code. (A sheet of stickers comes in the package with most GFCIs you buy.) Then everybody who uses that receptacle knows up front that the 3-prong equipment they just plugged in isn't really grounded. Just so they don't get cocky and use their non-double insulated power drill while standing barefoot in a puddle on their poured-concrete basement floor!

As a temporary measure only I have picked up a length of green colored insulated wire, #14 AWG, and drilled a 5/32 hole in my floor near the 2-prong receptacle in question and ran the wire down and across my basement to the breaker panel where I hooked it under a screw on the panel and tightened it down. Back at the other end I had a 3 to 2 prong adapter that has the little green wire with a fork terminal instead of the round ground-screw tab. I snipped off the fork terminal, stripped the end of both green wires and joined them with a wire nut.

I got my ground, and later I cut open the wall and ran new 12/2 with ground from the main panel and replaced the 2-prong receptacle properly. I advise the above, again, as a strictly temporary measure.

Oh, and the person who replaced some of your 2-prong receptacles with regular 3-prong receptacles probably didn't know any better. I think some people just think that 2-prongs are the old-fashioned kind and 3-prong are the new-fashioned kind, and don't have a clue that they're violating the electrical code and placing people's lives in jeopardy. But people do this all the time. For anyone reading this - Please don't do that anymore. Thank you.

Juice
 
  #5  
Old 01-22-01, 11:17 AM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Thanks, John and Juice for your information. Juice could I just as easily ground it to a galv. pipe if it's near and 10' extends into the ground for a temp measure?
 
  #6  
Old 01-22-01, 11:22 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fayetteville, NY, USA
Posts: 1,052
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
Only at a point on the pipe that is 5-feet from its point of entrance into your building. If it is farther in than that it poses a shock hazard to persons touching any part of your plumbing while touching any electrical device. that's NEC. Hope that helps.

Juice
 
  #7  
Old 01-22-01, 11:59 AM
Wgoodrich
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
John Nelson, I am proud of how you made your first reply in this post. Well put, well coverd, little room for misunderstanding, and to the point. Very professional reply, I commend you.

Juice, you did good too. Just got impressed with the precise wording of John's first reply. I needed to comment on his presentation.

Both of you were correct in what you said and very professional.


Are you guys good or what?

Wg
 
  #8  
Old 01-22-01, 12:03 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fayetteville, NY, USA
Posts: 1,052
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
I'm honored. And obviously travel in good company, hanging out with the likes of Mr. John Nelson. Thank you, Wg.

Juice
 
  #9  
Old 01-23-01, 08:25 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
In the interest of safety, it would best to rewire the entire home up to code. But understanding that this takes alot of time and money, for a solution wich i feel is temporary....The national electrical code states that a GFCI
receptacle is a acceptable replacement for ungrounded circuits.But must be clearly marked "no equipment ground"
article 210-7,3

c beilman any further questions please repost...
 
  #10  
Old 01-24-01, 05:43 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fayetteville, NY, USA
Posts: 1,052
Received 1 Vote on 1 Post
I indicated the labeling requirement in an earlier reply. I did not, however, know where the heck it was stated in the NEC. Thanks for the reference number, c beilman.
 
  #11  
Old 01-25-01, 03:07 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Your welcome juicehead............C Beilman
 
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
Display Modes
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: