Adding a 2-wire receptacle with 12/2 wire

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Pete C. wrote:

. The first problem is pluging the tester in when the outlet should be 2 wire. Simple plug in testers can tell you there isn't a ground. They can't reliably tell you there is a good ground - they test with a very low current. RBM's idea of a pigtail socket and light bulb is better.
I agree that a GFCI outlet that protects the downstream outlets is a good idea. Downstream outlets can then be grounded type, even though they are not grounded. Mark them as in the Mike Holt link.
If there is no ground I would try to avoid attaching the ground wire to the boxes. If you had an event that makes one box hot they will all become hot. If you have a GFCI outlet and protected downstream grounded type outlets all the outlet grounds will be hot. (But the GFCI should protect you.) The bare ground wire could be insulated with tape.
--
bud--

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Ahah! Thanks. I thought I remembered reading something about that somewhere, but I wasn't sure. So, I was wondering if connecting the ground wire to the metal could actually end up creating a potential hazard rather than eliminating one.
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attach them both to the metal boxes with a green grounding screw. fyi: if you want real grounding protection for both outlets you can install a gfci to the first one and run the other off of that, then both would be grounded. -c

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Interesting situation.
Ideally, you would like to follow the info given in the *second* Q2 at this site:
http://www.mikeholt.com/mojonewsarchive/NECQ-HTML/HTML/May-NEC-Questions~20050510.php
You can replace the first outlet with a GFCI receptacle and then replace the downstream outlets with 3 pronged outlets, You won't gain an equipment ground, but you will gain protection for the users as well as the convenience of being able to plug in three prong cords without an adaptor. If the circuit isn't grounded, you shouldn't being using an adaptor anyway.
However, as noted at that site, the permission to use 3 pronged receptacles on an ungrounded circuit applies to existing receptacles only, not to new (branch-circuit extention) receptacles.
Feel free to use that information as you see fit.
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Your new receptacle should be ran to the service panel so that it will be grounded.
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wrote:

If your 2-wire electrical outlet is allowable, then just fold back the unused ground wire. Do not install a 3-hole outlet if it is not properly grounded. However since this is a safety issue, it would be a very good investment and wise to upgrade all 2-wire outlets to grounded outlets.
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yeah homes around here were all 2 prong 1950 vintage
I upgraded 2 to all grounded added GFCIs and helped some neighbors do the same. BX made it easy:)
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new 2 prong outlets are still made but not commonly sold
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Code says that if you install a 3-hole outlet, it MUST either be properly grounded OR, have a GFCI upstream of it (and have a "protected by GFCI" sticker applied to the new outlet).
_If_ you're relying on GFCI instead of true grounding for a new 3 hole outlet, its box and receptacle grounding terminal MUST NOT be interconnected to any other ungrounded outlets, including the GFCI. So, if you use three wire to connect from an ungrounded GFCI to an ungrounded 3 hole outlet, the ground wire should (as Phisherman says) not be connected.
The reason for this being that if you have a series of outlets with ground interconnect, but no true ground, a hot-ground fault in any device on any outlet, makes all the other 3-wire devices on all of the outlets live. Which could even include plumbing segments (sinks, taps etc), appliance enclosures etc. At least with a GFCI, it should trip and prevent you getting electrocuted. Without a GFCI or if it fails ... ouch.
--
Chris Lewis,

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On Mar 19, 3:15pm, snipped-for-privacy@nortelnetworks.com (Chris Lewis) wrote:

re: Code says that if you install a 3-hole outlet, it MUST either be properly grounded OR, have a GFCI upstream of it
But doesn't code also say that the GFCI protection option is only available for existing receptacles? I've found conflicting info on the web, but most of the info I've found say the old circuits are grandfathered, but anything new (like the OP's) situation is not allowed to be simply protected by a GFCI and must be properly grounded.
Do you know the definitive answer?
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DerbyDad03 wrote:

Yes you are right. I didn't catch the problem even when you pointed it out the first time. The 2 wire circuit cannot be extended unless a ground is picked up for the new boxes. For an extension that can be a separate wire to permitted locations - usually anywhere on the grounding electrode system or the branch circuit panel ground bar. (250.130-C)
Nice catch.
--
bud

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Attach the bare wire to the box. That's what electricians have been doing for thousands of years. Caves in Egypt show bare wires in dinosaur days atached to the metal boxes.
--
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