Three prong outlets

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cnavarro wrote:

It is possible that your outlet boxes are grounded. Check for a bare ground wire in the box, probably connected to the metal box. If so, you need to test the ground and make sure it's good, then buy a self-grounding outlet and install it and you're good to go.
Otherwise, it's OK only if you put a GFCI breaker or outlet upstream of the new 3 prong outlet, and you put a sticker on the new outlet that says "GFCI PROTECTED, NO EQUIPMENT GROUND". Or you can replace the outlet with a GFCI outlet, which really ought to be labled "NO EQUIPMENT GROUND". Or you can run a separate green wire back to the breaker box or ground electrode conductor (that big bare copper wire that comes out of the breaker box and goes to your water meter.) I've run a few green ground wires in my 55 y.o. house, and installed an ungrounded GFCI in my kitchen because it was too hard to route a ground wire there.
BTW, the reason it's worse than the old 2-prong outlets is if you install 3-prong outlets without connecting the ground, you give the *illusion* that the outlets are grounded.
-bob
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zxcvbob wrote:

Testing for a grounded box is not as easy as it sounds. Most electrical testers draw too little current to actually test the Equipment Grounding Conductor (EGC). Only a test conducted using special tools or techniques will actually test the EGC. Call the tool rental places to find one that rents an Ideal suretest. -- Tom H
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Takoma Park Volunteer Fire Department Postmaster wrote:

That's why I glossed over it. Before renting a tester, or rigging up a test load and hoping you don't start a fire with it, it would make sense to test for a ground using a cheap neon light tester or one of those little outlet testers. If they say your ground is good, then it is worth doing further testing.
Best regards, Bob
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They still sell 2 prong outlets !
On 1 Apr 2004 16:37:51 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@sbcglobal.net (cnavarro) wrote:

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One other option to consider is to replace the outlet with a new 3 pin and to put epoxy or some other similar substance into the ground hole. This prevents anyone from using a 3 pin plug. And before I get a barrage of e mails telling me this is is illegal etc, it is not. I have a safety certificate from a hydro inspector who, discretely, suggested this and gave me a full inspection on a property. Did I agree with it? The other options were to leave old 2 pin outlets in this property that posed a bigger fire risk due to age and bad contacts, or to re-wire, however that was not an option, short term for me. The GCFI oulet is the safest and best way to go if a 3 pin grounded plug will be used. Good luck whichever way you go. Rob

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On 1 Apr 2004 16:37:51 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@sbcglobal.net (cnavarro) wrote:

While your Home Depot may not have a two prong outlet, your local electrical supply house should have them available.
Jeff
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What kind of cabling do you have? It's perfectly acceptable to use the conduit as the ground if it's in metal flex conduit. Thne you only need to run a short stub from that to the ground terminals on your outlets.
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Childfree Scott wrote:

That simply is not true. The US national electric code places heavy restrictions on the use of flexible metallic conduit as an Equipment Grounding Conductor (EGC). viz.
250.118 Types of Equipment Grounding Conductors. The equipment grounding conductor run with or enclosing the circuit conductors shall be one or more or a combination of the following: (5)    Flexible metal conduit where both the conduit and fittings are listed for grounding. (6)    Listed flexible metal conduit that is not listed for grounding, meeting all the following conditions: a.    The conduit is terminated in fittings listed for grounding. b.    The circuit conductors contained in the conduit are protected by over current devices rated at 20 amperes or less. c.    The combined length of flexible metal conduit and flexible metallic tubing and liquid tight flexible metal conduit in the same ground return path does not exceed 1.8 m (6 ft). d.    The conduit is not installed for flexibility.
Most of the "Flex" that is available is not listed for grounding. The pot metal fittings that are often used with flex are not listed for grounding. -- Tom H
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