End of run outlet has 2 sets of wires


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Old 10-25-21, 03:14 PM
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Question End of run outlet has 2 sets of wires

I have an old outlet that I would like to replace with a double outlet/gang box. This outlet has 2 sets of wires coming in that lead back to a junction box. The only other wire in the box is the power source which has 4 additional outlets on it before it connects to the panel. There are no additional outlets after this one. Why would there be 2 sets of wires (1 to each plug) from one circuit? Since I planned on making it a double outlet anyway, can I use one wire for each outlet?
 
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Old 10-25-21, 03:47 PM
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So, you have three cables coming into the box?

You said two of the cables lead to a junction box. Are there any other cables leaving the junction box? If so, follow them to find out what is powered by those wires exiting your outlet box. If the only cables in the junction box are the two from your outlet box then you have your answer. They don't power anything.
 
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Old 10-25-21, 03:57 PM
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Hello Pilot Dane, out of the junction box, there is a total of 3 cables. 2 go to the one outlet I'd like to update. The 3rd leads to the circuit panel but also has 4 outlets along the way.
 
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Old 10-25-21, 04:21 PM
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Ok.... lets' step back and clarify.

One cable is the feed from the panel to the junction box.
Then there are two cables that connect that junction box to the receptacle you want to update.

Sorry.... that doesn't make sense and doesn't sound likely. It would make more sense for one of those cables leaving the junction box to go somewhere you are not aware of.

You're going to need to open the splices in the junction box, remove the receptacle and test the wiring. You could remove both cables from the receptacle and see if they are both live.
 
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Old 10-25-21, 04:52 PM
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How are the cables connected in the junction box and to the receptacle?
I suspect you one power in cable and two power out cables unless the receptacle is half switched. Then one cable goes to a switch..
 
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Old 10-25-21, 05:28 PM
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PJmax, "One cable is the feed from the panel to the junction box.
Then there are two cables that connect that junction box to the receptacle you want to update."
Yes, that is what I believe I'm dealing with. I'll do some further inspection tomorrow, per your recommendation, and get back to this post. Getting ready to get hit with a pretty good storm.
 
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Old 10-26-21, 05:10 AM
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I think it would help everyone if you could provide a wiring diagram of the circuit from the breaker panel breaker to the outlet you want to replace. It is possible, but not likely, that each receptacle on the outlet you want to replace has power from a different breaker.
 
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Old 10-26-21, 10:42 AM
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Just re-verified and included diagram. Junction box has 3 cables; 1 to panel and 2 to a single outlet. Also, turn off circuit and everything on that run shut off. From the area of the junction box, I can see through the hole that the 2 wires feed through. They are going to that one outlet.


Two wires to one outlet from junction box.
of scenario
 
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Old 10-26-21, 10:53 AM
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Do you know what kind of load was on the outlet (washer, gas dryer, sump pump, refrigerator)? I wonder if someone misinterpreted a code requirement for "separate circuits" as separate plugs on the receptacle. The way it is wired does not give any added power or protection just a parallel path for the same circuit. I am assuming that the four outlet circuit from the panel is a two wire circuit (black, white) and not a three wire circuit (black ,red, white).
 
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Old 10-26-21, 11:07 AM
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2john02458 - As far as I know, it's just a general purpose outlet. But at one time it was 1 of only 2 outlets in a 13ft x 11ft sitting room space. The only other outlet was designated for a window ac. The 4 outlets on the cable going to panel are also general use (14/2 - 15amp circuit) that were added during a basement update.
 
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Old 10-26-21, 12:27 PM
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A wire is singular. A cable has more than one wire. Do you have 2 wires or 2 cables between the junction box and the outlet you want to change?
 
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Old 10-26-21, 12:50 PM
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beelzebob - Sorry I was using them interchangeably. They are all 14/2g cables.
 
 

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