Outlet Replacement Issue

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  #1  
Old 01-11-16, 03:57 PM
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Outlet Replacement Issue

Hello Everyone,

I have an older home built in the 50's, two prong no ground outlets. I was replacing several with GFCI outlets as per code requirements. Everything going smoothly until the last one. I took the outlet out and noticed wedged in the back of the box were several wires wrapped with electrical tape.
I have spent the last few hours untangling the mess and here is what I have discovered. There are three load and one line coming into the outlet box. Someone had spliced the loads into the line and wrapped the whole mess with electrical tape. Coming off of the tape was a single line (White/Black) connecting to the outlet. I have traced the loads down. One goes to an outlet in the kitchen, the other to the kitchen light (Overhead), the last one goes to an outside light and another outlet in the living room.

The outlet I was replacing is located in my living room on the opposite wall of my kitchen. It has been this way for many years as I have had no reason to inspect that outlet. I wanted to plug a power-strip into that outlet and needed a ground plug. Found out I could replace it with a GFCI outlet as long as it was properly labeled.

I know I can run one load off of the outlet. Does anyone have any suggestions on what I can do with the other two?? I did notice on the back of the Leviton GFCI outlet there are connections for two separate loads. Can you run two loads off of one outlet?? I could skip the third load as it runs to a single outlet above my stove for a clock. I don't use it anyway. I would appreciate any help. Thanks....

Rob
 
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  #2  
Old 01-11-16, 04:09 PM
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You would pigtail the wires and put the pigtail under the screw clamp.
 
  #3  
Old 01-11-16, 04:15 PM
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There are three load and one line coming into the outlet box
You can connect all three loads to the GFI.
Connect your source wires to the Line side of GFI.
Wire nut the load wires with a single pigtail to the Load side of GFI.
Everything downstream will be protected and the GFI box includes stickers for downstream receptacles.
 
  #4  
Old 01-11-16, 06:11 PM
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Hi Guys,

Thank you for the responses. So, If I am understanding right I can basically put everything back the way I found it only correctly this time though. What you guys have posted is basically what I found once I got everything untangled/untaped. Two loads were taped to the line. Off of that was a single line pigtail going to the line side of the outlet. The third load was attached to the load side of the outlet. I was under the impression you could not have more than 1 load coming off of an outlet??

Rob
 
  #5  
Old 01-11-16, 06:40 PM
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I was under the impression you could not have more than 1 load coming off of an outlet??
The load didn't come off the receptacle. The receptacle was just a bridge.

Note most GFCI will take two wires on the load side so you may not need to pigtail. Be sure you identify the hot cable and connect it to the line side. (A non contact tester can not be used to determine which cable is hot.)
 
  #6  
Old 01-11-16, 07:37 PM
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Hello Ray,

Yes, I already have the line(hot) cable marked and separated from the other three cables. On the Leviton I am using I do see 2 separate connections for both line as well as load. I understand the "bridge" concept. How many loads can you "bridge" using a receptacle? I thought only one downstream load was permitted.
I would have to pigtail the connections. I would not want the downstream loads protected by this outlet. The other downstream outlets have been replaced by their own GFCI receptacle. I also would not want my overhead lights GFCI protected by this outlet as well.

Rob
 
  #7  
Old 01-11-16, 07:51 PM
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I would not want the downstream loads protected by this outlet
In this case, do not use the load terminals. The load terminals are taped off at the factory, leave it that way.
You have a source and 3 loads. All these need to go to the GFI line terminals. The only way to do this is by wirenutting the wires with a single pigtail to the GFI.
Pigtails are a good idea in any wiring situation.
 
  #8  
Old 01-11-16, 08:07 PM
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Hi Brian,

Thanks for the reply. Is having 3 loads wired on this receptacle safe or permitted?? I have never encountered anything like this before. All the others I have swapped out either had no load or just one.

Rob
 
  #9  
Old 01-11-16, 08:08 PM
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Brian, I suggested load side because I was thinking if he can identify the downstream receptacles he could replace those also with three prong receptacles labeled GFCI Protected - No Ground and have some other receptacles to use for grounded plugs.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 01-11-16 at 09:58 PM. Reason: Clarification
  #10  
Old 01-11-16, 09:55 PM
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The downstream could be protected without each needing to be a gfi itself.
 
  #11  
Old 01-12-16, 04:49 AM
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Brian, I suggested load side
I suggested load side also in post #3, OP came back and said it's not desired.

OP Lawgiver, you can see all the recommendations are to install the GFI to where it protects everything downstream. The downstream GFI receptacles should be removed and replaced as Ray stated in post 9. Save the single GFI's for other locations you want to change out.
 
  #12  
Old 01-12-16, 09:50 AM
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My only reasoning for not wanting to protect everything downstream is "convenience". This particular outlet isn't in a very good place. It's directly located behind my entertainment center. If it trips TV, A/V equipment, furniture, etc. would have to be moved out of the way. If I protected each receptacle on its own GFCI I wouldn't have to worry about anything downstream tripping this outlet. There are also two lights involved also with the downstream bundle. Unless you guys are telling me it's advisable to have the lights GFCI. This is my last outlet. Everything else has been swapped out that I wanted to change. One of my concerns was the amount of downstream connections on this receptacle. I always thought anything over one connection is to much? I appreciate all the assistance.

Rob
 
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