need wiring help

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  #1  
Old 08-25-13, 07:08 PM
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need wiring help

Here is the problem and I need some advice.

The wife has a GFCI outlet in her bathroom and started yelling when she lost outlet power this morning while getting ready for her day. I replaced the outlet with a new GFCI and still doesn't work. However, this is what I can tell you

1. I cannot obtain any sort of continuity on the new GFCI

2. I was able to obtain continuity now On the old GFCI on the upper portion of the outlet only.

3. When I removed the outlet this is how it was wired. I have four wires entering the box two black and two white and of course a ground wire. Both black were wired to one side ( brass )and the both white to silver and ground was wired appropriately.

4. Prior to any problems I once tested the outlet with an outlet tester and according to the tester the outlet was wired correctly.

I guess it's possible that a new GFCI it could be bad. But what bothers me even more is where I have two black and two white wires I seem to be reading power with a non contact type tester only on one black wire. Shouldn't both black wires register hot?

where to go from here.

Thanks guys
 
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Old 08-25-13, 07:28 PM
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1. I cannot obtain any sort of continuity on the new GFCI
That is not what you test. You test voltage. And no a non contact tester doesn't really test voltage.

Both black were wired to one side ( brass )and the both white to silver and ground was wired appropriately.
GFCIs have a load side and a line side. From your description both sets of wires must be on the load side. If you put them on the line side it won't work but the bathroom light probably will.

a non contact type tester only on one black
Not a useful device for this type of testing. You need a multimeter, preferably analog.

Bottom line it sounds like you put the wires on the load side instead of the line side.
 
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Old 08-25-13, 07:43 PM
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Thank you,

Ok, I will check with a multimeter. At least I thought that I wired the new outlet identical to how the old one was wired, at least I thought. So you are telling me you cannot use a multimeter to test continuity on a GFCI?

Again. I want to make sure I understand. With two black wires entering the box both should be hot?
 
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Old 08-25-13, 08:00 PM
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Only one of the black wire will be hot. You have a black and white carrying power to the box and then a black and a white going out to other outlets elsewhere. So you need to take a tester determine which of the blacks has power. That black wire goes to the brass screw on the LINE side of the GFCI. Then look in the box and see which of the white wires comes in with the hot black wire in the same cable, this wire goes on the silver screw on the LINE side of the GFCI. The other 2 wires go on the LOAD side of the GFCI on the respective brass and silver screws. If the GFCI continues to trip then you have some sort of issue down the line in other outlets connected to that GFCI.
 
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Old 08-25-13, 08:41 PM
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If this helps this is what I have determined with a multimeter is this right or no.

so with two black wires and two white wires entering the box this is what we have:

I read voltage from only one of the black wires to ground wire. I read voltage from the same black wire in question to one white wire but not the other.
 
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Old 08-25-13, 08:50 PM
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That would be correct. The black and white which you have power on goes to the LINE terminals. The black and white with no power will go to the LOAD terminals.
 
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Old 08-25-13, 08:54 PM
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I read voltage from only one of the black wires to ground wire. I read voltage from the same black wire in question to one white wire but not the other.
Correct. The black wire that has potential on it, and the white wire running with it - the white wire you can read voltage to - are the line feed circuit wires. They need to be terminated to the LINE pair of terminals - black to brass and white to silver.

The other black/white pair feeds an additional load. Where you connect those two wires depends on whether that load needs GFCI protection or not. When you kill the power to this circuit, what do you lose besides this receptacle? An additional receptacle in this bathroom or another one? The lights?
 
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Old 08-25-13, 08:56 PM
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The black and white with no power will go to the LOAD terminals.
Not necessarily. If they go to the light they should also be on the line side.
 
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Old 08-26-13, 09:21 AM
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Ok,

i will here connect the hot black and white to line and the others to load and see what I get and report back here soon. As much as I hate to admit, It is more than likely i miswired this outlet seeing that I didn't confirm anything with a multimeter first. I simply wired the new one identical to the old one. I assumed that would be correct.

lesson learned.
 
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Old 08-26-13, 10:04 AM
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Before you wire the receptacle connect the two blacks with a wire nut and the two whites with a wire nut. If your lights come on put both sets of wires on the line side. If your bathroom light is still working with the receptacle disconnected ignore this post.
 
  #11  
Old 08-26-13, 10:39 AM
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I will try that. the outlet in question is not wired yet i put the project on hold to go to work. But before I do i will note that my house has two bathrooms. With my wifes outlet disconnected my wife states she went in to my bathroom to use my outlet and now my outlet is without power.

should I assume that once hers is connected properly it will restore power to my outlet?. if this is so would the tying the two black and two white still be necessary?
 
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Old 08-26-13, 10:44 AM
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With my wifes outlet disconnected my wife states she went in to my bathroom to use my outlet and now my outlet is without power.

should I assume that once hers is connected properly it will restore power to my outlet?. if this is so would the tying the two black and two white still be necessary?
It sounds as if the circuit feeds your wife's bathroom first and then proceeds to feed your bathroom. Tying the two blacks and the two whites together would confirm this. Assuming your bathroom has a regular duplex receptacle and not a GFCI device, your wife's GFCI device is probably providing protection to your receptacle.
 
  #13  
Old 08-26-13, 10:57 AM
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I will try it. Yes, I have a regular duplex outlet. I will post my results soon. Thanks for all the help I appreciate it. you guys are awesome
 
  #14  
Old 08-28-13, 08:51 AM
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Ok for all the help everyone deserves a good laugh and to know what happened. The problem was simple. I wired the NEW GFCI wrong without using a multimemter to confirm what wire was what and learned a lesson. Simply wiring a new outlet to match the old one is not enough.
I learned a lesson here and thanks for all the help.

you guys are awesome thank you
 
  #15  
Old 08-28-13, 09:23 AM
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Thanks for letting us know the outcome.
 
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