Installing a GFI

A simple task, I know.
The GFI in my kids' bathroom went bad. I installed the new one. When it's hanging out of the wall, it works. When I push it back into the box and press the button, I get sparks and it trips the breaker in the basement.
The damn ground wire keeps popping off, no matter how hard I torque it down.
All the other wires stay intact...they're the type that plug straight into a hole in the GFI, then a screw tightens them in.
What's the trick for getting the ground wire in tight? There's a little metal plate, but the wire doesn't fit under it...so I'm just trying to tighten it under the screw head.
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On Feb 11, 12:41 pm, Mitch@_._ wrote:

Honestly, your efforts sound so clumsy that you might consider hiring someone to help yu with this. One trick is to bend the wire around the business end of a screwdriver makin a nice loop in the wire then you can loop the wire around then nut rather than just stickin it in there.
Lawrence
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It is looped.
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On Mon, 11 Feb 2008 19:02:02 GMT, Mitch@_._ wrote:

If you have room in the box a green wirenut with the ground pigtail (spade terminal) does a good job
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On Mon, 11 Feb 2008 19:02:02 GMT, Mitch@_._ wrote:

BTW I think he is talking about a full loop, twisted shut, not just a hook.
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On Feb 11, 1:17 pm, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

TY
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On Feb 11, 1:41 pm, Mitch@_._ wrote:

I'm a little confused. Your post makes it sound like this has happened multiple times. First off, the ground popping off would not cause sparks and or a breaker trip unless the ground wire came in contact with the hot. A GFCI with no ground would operate just fine.
IIRC, the ground screw is on the opposite side of the GFCI from the hot leads, so it would not only have to pop off, it would need to find it's way over to the hot lead in order to spark and trip the breaker. In fact, if it sparks only after you press the Reset button, then the ground wire would have to have found it's way to Load side hot lead. Otherwise, if it was touching the Line hot, it would spark and trip as soon as you turned the breaker on.
I don't have a GFI in front of me, but every image I can pull up on Google shows the Load hot diagonally opposite the ground screw. How is the ground wire finding it's way all the way to the load hot while pushing the device back in the box?
I think you have something else going on besides a loose ground wire.
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Not necessarily, some manufacturers make them more dificult to wire than others. The new Leviton brand GFCI has a hole for the ground, just like the hot and neutral, so their pretty easy, also be careful how you arrange the wires in the box as you push the outlet back in, especially the bare ground.

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be certain to loop all wires clockwise around the screw as you tighten it........
coming off is very easy if its backwards
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On Feb 11, 10:41 am, Mitch@_._ wrote:

Double check that the wire nuts are tight with no exposed wire. Then wrap them with black tape.

That's funny, I just put one of these in and also had the hardest time getting the ground wire to tighten in that hole. Turned out I just had to turn the screw really hard to get to to tighten. Now, assuming that you have the same type that I struggled with, inside the hole and connected to the screw there is a metal plate. Unscrew the screw to its end, then slip the wire on top of that metal plate, then tighten the screw. The screw will pull that plate up until it's tight. You will know it's tight when the screw doesn't move around, and of course the wire is held in tight. I tightened mine till I thought the screw couldn't go any farther, but finally noticed that the screw was still loose in the hole. I finally turned it really hard and got the screw to start again.
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wrote:

Thank you!
Anyway, one of the hot wires had a nick in the insulation. So when everything was pushed back into the box, it shorted to the box.
Man, that stuff is such a tight squeeze.
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Mitch@_._ wrote:

No always, and the newer GFCIs sure are wide in a box.
I always wrap a strip of black electrical tape (its politically incorrect these days, but I've always known it as "jap wrap") around the outside perimeter of the GFCIs, covering both the screws on the hot terminals and both screws on the neutral terminals.
I make sure there is no, zero, da nada, zippo, bare wire at the rear holes / terminals on the hot and neutral legs.
I take some green tape and wrap a single turn of the green, separately around the "Line" black wire and "Line" white wire, so I don't later have to do a lot of testing / guessing about which incoming wires in the box are "line" and which are "load" if, as always seems to happen, I have to replace the GFCI 10 years from now.
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