Old house with 2 prong receptacles

Reply

  #1  
Old 06-16-18, 04:41 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Old house with 2 prong receptacles

I have a house built in 1955 that has 2 prong outlets. I want to install gfci outlets and then regular 3 prong outlets downstream from them. I have a sub panel in the kitchen with 5 breakers that everything in the house is connected to. I tried using a digital circuit breaker finder but it is not picking up anything on the sub panel. It only works outside on the main panel and that breaker that feeds the sub panel. How can I change my receptacles to 3 prong without installing gfci receptacles on every outlet? Do I just need to find the first outlet that is connected to each of the 5 breakers in the sub panel? Thank you in advance
 
  #2  
Old 06-16-18, 04:54 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Do I just need to find the first outlet that is connected to each of the 5 breakers in the sub panel?
Yes. Start by identifying a specofic circuit on one of the breakers. At the receptacle closest to the subpanel remove the wires and turn the breaker back on. Check to see if all the receptacles on the circuit are now dead. If not you will need to reconnect the receptacle and repeat with the next.

You could also use GFCI breakers instead of receptacles.
 
  #3  
Old 06-16-18, 04:54 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I do not have any grounding in the outlets. I touched the metal box with voltage tester and there's no ground.
 
  #4  
Old 06-16-18, 04:56 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
I do not have any grounding in the outlets. I touched the metal box with voltage tester and there's no ground.
Not unexpected. Probably wired with ungrounded NM cable.
 
  #5  
Old 06-16-18, 04:57 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ok. So it's just 5 I need to locate right? For the 5 breakers in the sub panel
 
  #6  
Old 06-16-18, 05:00 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Yes just the five in the subpanel.
 
  #7  
Old 06-16-18, 05:15 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
One of the breakers in the sub panel is 25 amp. I've never seen a gfci outlet that is 25 amp
 
  #8  
Old 06-16-18, 05:34 PM
A
Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 4,293
Received 109 Votes on 101 Posts
Any way to replace the 25 amp breaker with a 20 amp breaker (or 15 amp if there is 14 gauge wiring in that branch circuit)?

Lights, small appliances, electronics, etc. with plugs that go into standard 120 volt 15 amp receptacles are rated for use on branch circuits not exceeding 20 amps.
 
  #9  
Old 06-16-18, 08:17 PM
T
Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: usa
Posts: 399
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
On the 12/2 wiring at panel I'd use the gfcis 20 amp breakers.
on any 14/2 wiring the 15amp gfci breakers.

What wire size is on 25 amp -12/2?
 
  #10  
Old 06-16-18, 08:55 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I misread the breaker is a 15 not 25. I am trying to track the wiring and from the sub panel and I think one wire is split to one outlet and then to a light switch which then goes to one more outlet. Neither of the outlets are downstream from each other but they are on the same circuit. If that is the case, would I need a gfci outlet for both of those outlets? I gfci breaker would be much easier but I would need 5 of them for that sub panel which would cost much more.
 
  #11  
Old 06-16-18, 11:10 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
I think one wire is split to one outlet and then to a light switch which then goes to one more outlet.
If you put a GFCI receptacle ahead of the light all would be protected. The only slight inconvenience would be you'd lose the light if the GFCI tripped.

You could also put a GFCI ahead of the light and feed the light from the line side of the GFCI instead of the load and put a second GFCI at the first receptacle after the light. That way the light wouldn't go out if the GFCI tripped.
 
  #12  
Old 06-17-18, 03:37 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I thought it might be easier to just install gfci/afci breakers. Do I need plug in or pigtail breakers for this panel?
 
Attached Images  

Last edited by ray2047; 06-17-18 at 04:31 PM. Reason: Crop, rotate, and adjust colors.
  #13  
Old 06-17-18, 04:21 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Or do I need to install just one gfci/afci breaker in the main panel breaker that supplies this sub panel?
 
  #14  
Old 06-17-18, 04:33 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
do I need to install just one gfci/afci breaker in the main panel breaker that supplies this sub pane
No, each circuit needs its own GFCI breaker. You don't want a single GFCI trip leaving everything dead. Plus makes it harder to troubleshoot a trip.
 
  #15  
Old 06-17-18, 04:35 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
In the pic above, do I need pig tail breakers? Run the neutral wire to the breaker and the pigtail to where the original neutral wire was?
 
  #16  
Old 06-17-18, 05:26 PM
J
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: usa
Posts: 9
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I haven't seen any gfci breakers at the store that will fit this setup.
 
Attached Images  
  #17  
Old 06-17-18, 07:05 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 13,806
Received 253 Votes on 221 Posts
You will not find and GFCI breakers for that pane,l it appears to be FPE. I would strongly recommend replacing that panel.
 
  #18  
Old 06-17-18, 09:14 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 15,224
Received 105 Votes on 91 Posts
Even if you found gfi breakers for that panel you would not want to pay the price. I too will say change the panel and then add the gfi protection if desired.
 
  #19  
Old 06-18-18, 10:57 AM
Z
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 5,564
Received 160 Votes on 142 Posts
I too would suggest budgeting for replacing/upgrading your panel some point in the near future. Circuit breakers wear out over time (decades), and FPE does not have a very good safety record to begin with.

In the meantime, I'd go back to the idea of GFI protection at the first receptacle. You could also pull the circuit out of the panel and add a new box with a faceless GFI on it. That would protect everything on the circuit like a GFI breaker.

 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: