GFCI wiring mess

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Old 09-13-17, 10:33 AM
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GFCI wiring mess

I would like to replace a 30 year old GFCI outlet with a newer one. In the box there are 5 wires. They are grey, green, black, white and red. The green is not a bare ground wire as we commonly see. All wires are encased in plastic protective sheathing. I have no idea what I'm up against here when I thought it would be a simple undo and replace setup of maybe 3 wires. Thanks for any assistance here everyone.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 10:43 AM
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My best guess is that gray is ground, which would make the others line and load. Do you have a DMM? Can't you simply connect the new plug as the old one was connected, or did you already remove the old plug?
 
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Old 09-13-17, 10:47 AM
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They are grey, green, black, white and red.
Gray is never ground. Green is ground.

You will be replacing like for like. Look at the back of the GFI. It should be labeled LINE and LOAD. The wires get removed from the old device and get transferred to the new device.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 10:49 AM
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I'm not very good with this stuff, although I have changed many outlets and switches before. It's when you're faced with an unknown that you stop before you act. I don't even have a new outlet yet. I pulled the old one to see what I would need when buying the new. I'm just not sure what wiring comes on a new GFCI outlet. Would it have these 5 colored wires for me to make a color by color swap?
 
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Old 09-13-17, 10:56 AM
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Hi Pete, your diagram makes me wish it were set up that way. Then it's just, undo this and place it there....that's my speed. This outlet, a SLATER GFCI from 1985, appears to have a ll 5 of these wire permanently embedded in the body of the outlet. They are NOT screwed to it like common receptacles. All 5 wires literally come from inside the piece itself. Am I in a bad place here? Thank you for your quick reply.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:06 AM
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picture attached

Here is a pic of the outlet. White and black come out of center of body together. Grey is single wire to the right.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:13 AM
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Please post a picture of the receptacle and wiring.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:15 AM
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This is easy. As your picture shows line and load are marked. Simply transfer those wires to the new GFCI.

Is this a mobile home?
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:24 AM
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Hi Ray, not a mobile home, no. Normal stick built colonial from the 80's. My question is do I cut the existing 5 wires, strip them then attach them to the new GFCI? It's just not clear to me where these wires originate from inside this box, it's pretty full. And what purpose does the GREY wire serve here? Thanks again
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:33 AM
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You may need to pull the wires out but still connected to get a clear idea. Still not sure post pictures of the box with the wires still connected but pulled out.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:42 AM
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Need to see the front of that receptacle too.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 11:57 AM
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wiring pics

OK, here are pics of extended wiring and the face of the outlet. A bit hard to see is the bundle right at the front of the box which has 2 white wires and a grey wire. Behind that in the box is a bare copper ground attached to the plastic covered green coming to outlet. Hope these help more.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 12:46 PM
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Old gfi's had the wires into the device that spliced to the house wires. Just undo the splice and move to the labeled terminals.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 01:00 PM
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Be sure to ID the load wires so that they end up on the LOAD terminals. You can add a short black wire to the two wires for the load black or undo the splice and connect both to the screw terminal which is designed for two wires.
 
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Old 09-14-17, 06:44 AM
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They are grey, green, black, white and red.

Gray is never ground. Green is ground.
A quick google search for older plug wiring gave me that answer. Didn't seem right to me. Shouldn't have posted that.


So...red/gray are load, black/white are line, and green is ground? Like such...
 
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Old 09-14-17, 07:33 AM
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The line and load labels are on the back of the old gfi. Line is the center pair of wires.
 
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Old 09-14-17, 08:53 AM
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What great help you all have been for someone having a hard time with this situation. All I need to do now is get a new GFCI receptacle and transfer wires accordingly. Thanks so much to everyone!
 
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Old 12-08-18, 12:42 PM
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I would very much like to thank all of your for this wonderful, most helpful thread.
Soooo glad that I discovered all of you!!!
Thanks again.
 
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