appliances and grounded wall outlet

I know someone whose kitchen's wall outlet/receptacle has 3 prong connector. However, tester show that they are not grounded.
These receptacles are in the kitchen, where there's plan to plug in (different outlet) - free standing gas oven/range - refrigerator
My questions are 1. is it dangerous to run these appliances on ungrounded receptacles? what's the risk with such setup? 2. the handyman who helped with some of the fixup said it's difficult to "ground" those receptables. It pretty much require toring up parts of the kitchen, where cabinets/ceramic tiles are installed, and there's no plan to do any serious remodeling To make things more difficult, this is a 3 floor building, where ground floor is car garage, and 2nd and 3rd floor is residence, and this kitchen is on the 3rd floor, and there's no plan to disturb 2nd floor at all 3. one person suggested to put a surge suppressor adaptor between the wall outlet and appliance, in lieu of a grounded connection. Is this advisable 4. would a GFCI receptacle/extension cord help in this scenerio
I am not familiar with electric at all, so I apologize if I am asking dumb questions. What I like to know is what options are available
a. take the risk and plug in to an ungrounded outlet b. have some sort of workaround (adaptor/suppressor/gfci/etc), using ungrounded outlet c. have some other set of eyes looking at the receptacle, and maybe get lucky by just do some simple/quick wiring, and get a grounded outlet
Sorry for the long post
K.K.
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Clueless,
Have an electrician take a look. It's really likely that the old wire can be pulled and new wire installed without any tearing up of walls. May be expensive though. A much cheaper fix would be to see if the junction boxes are grounded and run wire from there to the receptacles.
Dave M.
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The easiest way to improve the situation is to replace the receptacles with GFCI ones. You don't need a ground wire to do this, and it greatly improves safety.
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I never thought so, but from reading these things, some people seem to get the idea that having the GFCI actually provides a ground. It doesn't.
--
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Mark Lloyd
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Thanks for the feedback
I keep seeing GFCI mentioned in my research as well
I guess the part that I don't understand is: Is there any problem running a 3 prong appliances (such as gas range or fridge) on a GFCI receptacle that is not grounded? Also, does a surge suppressor do anything to an electric equipment that does not ground properly?
My understanding is that IF some wire got loose within an electric equipment, and the loose wire is in contact with the metal casing, the casing itself become "hot", and anything (such as a person) that touches the casing will causes the electricity to travel from casing to the person
With a properly grounded receptacle, the ground wire will carry most/all of the electricty from casing to ground, and possibly tripped the circuit breaker
This may sounds like I am playing with fire, but I just want to understand the situation: if there are no wire coming lose within the equipment itself, then there's technically no need for that ground...
Again, appreciate all the feedback thus far
K.K.
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Clueless wrote:

No. GFCIs are permitted by the NEC on circuits without a ground. Mark the GFCI with a label included with the GFCI - "No equipment ground". GFCIs should be tested periodically acording to directions.

Not a good idea - if anything it will make the shock hazard worse.

Right except the person needs contact with the "hot" casing and another point to get a shock. With a GFCI, when that contact is made and a current through the person reaches 5 mA the GFCI will trip. (Actually when there is a 5 mA current difference between the hot and neutral by whatever path.) As Mark said, the GFCI does not manufacture a ground, it just detects a current difference.

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Bud-- wrote:

Is what you are talking about what you see in newer bathrooms where if it trips you press the reset button?
The OP stated that this was to avoid using grounds in the kitchen for such things including the refrigerator. It doesn't seem practical to me to have something where everytime it tripped, you would have to pull out the refrigerator to get to the outlet behind it! Am I missing something or did everyone just miss that these would be hard to reach outlets with heavy appliances?
-- John Ross
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Clueless posted for all of us...

and the loose wire is in contact with the metal casing, the casing itself become "hot", and anything (such as a person) that touches the casing will causes the electricity to travel from casing to the person

situation: if there are no wire coming lose within the equipment itself, then there's technically no need for that ground...

--
Tekkie "There\'s no such thing as a tool I don\'t need."

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Might be GFCI protected, so check for one.
Also, when it comes to electricity, only trained personel are allowed to work on energized equipment, so getting an electrician sounds like a good idea.
later,
tom @ www.CarFleaMarket.com
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