I would have to guess the other way looks stupid because nearly
every one is installed the other way.
There are only two arguments that seem to make sense.
Ground up, does appear to have a slight safety advantage. Notice
I did say SLIGHT.
Ground up does not work well with all plugs (then again ground
down does not work well with some other plugs.)
I don't intend to loose sleep over it, but all my plugs that get
added or worked on are ground up.
Is that the opposite of "sleep tight"?
Discussions here have centered around ground down, except when the
outlet is on a wall switch. I doubt most people would know that
code if they didn't own the home when it was under construction, but
those who pay attention could notice the difference and ask or figure
I have 3 receptacles on wall switches. I should check them..... The
one I can get to is ground down, like the other outlets in the house.
That's what happens when the electrician is a durn furiner.
I read that here too, and is my nature, I believe things when I first
hear them. But in my life, I've only dropped coins in the middle of
the bedroom when I take off my pants, and off the front edge of
kitchen table. I also don't have any loosely plugged in plugs, and
if I did, I can't imagine a coin getting in one.
The reasoning I heard was that if you use metal cover plates and the
screw that secures the cover plate comes loose, the cover could
actually slide down and if you weren't paying attention could hit the
prongs of a plug as it's being removed. With the ground up this is
harmless; with the ground down you could energize the cover plate and/
or short the hot and neutral prongs of the plug if it fell just so.
An infinetesimally rare possibility, but a non-zero one.
Each of the four switched outlets in my house are ground up. The
bottom receptacle is on the switch and the top one is hot. The switch
was indicated by a small sticker on the switch (until folks get use to
the new house).
By visually looking I know they are switched, so treating repairs
New stone in the mix: Does the ground go into the center?
Years ago I worked at a factory where the electricians were required
to install all outlets ground up. I was told that since there was more
of a chance that a metal object would come in contact with a loose
plug from the top than from the bottom, and since in the vast majority
of the installations the type of cord would not be an issue, they
opted for the "safer" method.
In other words, if it makes the factory just a tad bit safer, and
really has no other impact (other then writing it up in the procedure
manual) then why not?
Or at least I did until most of the el-cheapo stuff such as wall
warts, night lights, air fresheners, shaver and cell phone chargers
etc. etc. etc. all the ancillary gear we seem to have to plug in these
days, seem to be ground pin down!
Also thinking; if and when I ever finish off and wire my basement
area, I will install two duplex outlets in each location and one will
be UP and the other DOWN.
However will probably then find then that things plugged into one
duplex outlet will interfere with things plugged into t'other adjacent
It's probably this confusion and the increasing number of 'gadgets'
that has lead the profusion of cheap and in some cases very nasty
'power bars' into which we then plug, even more, higgledy-piggledy too
many of the power supplies for the various gadgets..
I have found a few wall warts with plugs that are L shaped so they are
parallel to the floor and don't block another outlet. These have to
be very light though.
I don't know why they don't just add a piggyback to the big ones.
Actually I do know the rea$on, but it would make everyone's life
It's not necessarily safer. One of the biggest dangers is fires caused by
heat from loose connections. Anything that increases the odds of bringing
your attention to a loose connection is likely to be safer for that reason,
even if it results in a short and a circuit breaker tripping.
Get the recessed outlets, like they use for mounting clocks, then no matter
what slides down the walls - from pennies to drunk relatives - there will be
no hazard at all.
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