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Old 08-17-2009, 12:31 PM   #16
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


This thread must be over a year old. I should have not told the OP to do, what I would have done in my house.

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Old 08-17-2009, 01:06 PM   #17
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by mpoulton View Post
Turn off the breaker for that circuit. Check for continuity between the neutral wire in the box and the metal box itself. You should read essentially no resistance (same reading as with your test leads shorted together). If that is the case, then look to confirm what the grounding path is: Is the box installed with metal conduit? Is it fed with metal-sheathed cable? Is there a grounding wire connected to the box? Any of those things would be fine. If you can't tell how it's grounded, don't trust it and install a GFCI instead.
Forgive me but what type of meter should I be using to test this?


and as far as i can tell there is a screw that is located in the back of the box towards the top, and I can see a metal wire attached to it. I would still like to have a way to verify that its grounded properly
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Old 08-17-2009, 04:53 PM   #18
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by tb582 View Post
Forgive me but what type of meter should I be using to test this?


and as far as i can tell there is a screw that is located in the back of the box towards the top, and I can see a metal wire attached to it. I would still like to have a way to verify that its grounded properly
A resistance/continuity/ohm meter. Almost all multimeters do this.
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Old 08-17-2009, 08:02 PM   #19
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


Quote:
This thread must be over a year old. I should have not told the OP to do, what I would have done in my house.
tb582 has turned it into his thread


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Is there a way to check and see if the metal box is grounded properly, so I can bypass all this and just install regular 3prong oulets?
It's electrical 101 but you need an understanding of how electricity flows thru a simple circuit.

With a voltage tester, check hot to neutral (black to white) and you will have 120 volts. Then check hot to the metal box. If you have 120v, you have some kind of a ground. If you have metal jacketed cable, it may or may not be an approved ground. If you have old non metallic jacketed cable you will see the bare ground wires in the box (99% of the time)

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and as far as i can tell there is a screw that is located in the back of the box towards the top, and I can see a metal wire attached to it. I would still like to have a way to verify that its grounded properly
I missed this. Take a pic to be sure but it sounds like you have a ground wire in there. For a short period in the late 50's/early 60's, they started using grounded cable and ground the box but still use 2 prong receps.

Last edited by 220/221; 08-17-2009 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 08-18-2009, 12:40 PM   #20
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
tb582 has turned it into his thread

Take a pic to be sure but it sounds like you have a ground wire in there. For a short period in the late 50's/early 60's, they started using grounded cable and ground the box but still use 2 prong receps.
I took pics this morning but forgot the memory card on my desk - I'll post pics later on. Hopefully we can solve this
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Old 08-18-2009, 07:12 PM   #21
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
tb582 has turned it into his thread




It's electrical 101 but you need an understanding of how electricity flows thru a simple circuit.

With a voltage tester, check hot to neutral (black to white) and you will have 120 volts. Then check hot to the metal box. If you have 120v, you have some kind of a ground. If you have metal jacketed cable, it may or may not be an approved ground. If you have old non metallic jacketed cable you will see the bare ground wires in the box (99% of the time)



I missed this. Take a pic to be sure but it sounds like you have a ground wire in there. For a short period in the late 50's/early 60's, they started using grounded cable and ground the box but still use 2 prong receps.
Pics attached, hopefully I can just install std. 3prong outlets
Attached Images
  
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Old 08-18-2009, 08:00 PM   #22
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


You do have grounded cable.

Test from hot to ground to make sure the ground is complete.


Turn off power. Test to make sure it's off.


1. Remove the screws and clamps from the box. Removing the clamps will make more room. It's a technical violation but the cable is not going to magically get pulled out of the box at this point.

2. Install a ground screw (or the existing screw) in one hole and wrap the ground wire around it clockwise to effectively ground the box.

3. Install a short (appx 5") bare or green pigtail with a ground screw (or existing screw) in the other hole using the same method.

4. Install your new recep using the screw terminals rather than the back stabs amd making sure that the bare wire doesn't end up touching the side screw terminals.

Last edited by 220/221; 08-18-2009 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 08-18-2009, 08:45 PM   #23
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
You do have grounded cable.

Test from hot to ground to make sure the ground is complete.


Turn off power. Test to make sure it's off.


1. Remove the screws and clamps from the box. Removing the clamps will make more room. It's a technical violation but the cable is not going to magically get pulled out of the box at this point.

2. Install a ground screw (or the existing screw) in one hole and wrap the ground wire around it clockwise to effectively ground the box.

3. Install a short (appx 5") bare or green pigtail with a ground screw (or existing screw) in the other hole using the same method.

4. Install your new recep using the screw terminals rather than the back stabs amd making sure that the bare wire doesn't end up touching the side screw terminals.

Great I'm going to try to either find my voltmeter or pick one up tomorrow. I'm assuming it will say in the directions for the meter, but does the red prob touch to the HOT wire and the black prob to the screw in the back to test for ground?
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Old 08-18-2009, 10:28 PM   #24
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


Doesn't matter.
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Old 08-24-2009, 09:39 AM   #25
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Great I'm going to try to either find my voltmeter or pick one up tomorrow. I'm assuming it will say in the directions for the meter, but does the red prob touch to the HOT wire and the black prob to the screw in the back to test for ground?

OK tonight is the night I shall verify if the boxes are grounded, this is the meter I have: http://www.homedepot.com/Electrical-...atalogId=10053

However the directions are less than helpful. What should I have the dial set to?

The I simply just touch one end to the hot wire and the other to the screw in the back, correct? and all this while the electricity is still on
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Old 08-24-2009, 03:52 PM   #26
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


Set meter to "AC volts"

One lead on black, one lead on white will read appx 120 volts.

One lead on black, one lead on ground (or anywhere on the metal box) should read appx 120 volts.

White to ground should read appx zero volts.
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Old 08-25-2009, 04:20 PM   #27
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
Set meter to "AC volts"

One lead on black, one lead on white will read appx 120 volts.

One lead on black, one lead on ground (or anywhere on the metal box) should read appx 120 volts.

White to ground should read appx zero volts.

So I'm going on the left side of the meter what do I set the dial to 200? the little audio tone?

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Old 08-25-2009, 08:24 PM   #28
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
Set meter to "AC volts"

One lead on black, one lead on white will read appx 120 volts.

One lead on black, one lead on ground (or anywhere on the metal box) should read appx 120 volts.

White to ground should read appx zero volts.

YUP thats exactly what they read!

Can you shed a bit more light on this?


Quote:
Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
1. Remove the screws and clamps from the box. Removing the clamps will make more room. It's a technical violation but the cable is not going to magically get pulled out of the box at this point.

2. Install a ground screw (or the existing screw) in one hole and wrap the ground wire around it clockwise to effectively ground the box.

3. Install a short (appx 5") bare or green pigtail with a ground screw (or existing screw) in the other hole using the same method.

4. Install your new recep using the screw terminals rather than the back stabs amd making sure that the bare wire doesn't end up touching the side screw terminals. .
I'm going to remove the old outlet - Use my new outlet and connect both the white and black wires to the same connectors as they are on in the current setup. I then need to run a small piece of wire from the new outlet's ground screw (which is on the lower side of the outlet) to the grounding screw in the back, correct?

Where do I get this "bare or green pigtail wire? Can you link to it on homedepot's website?
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Old 08-27-2009, 10:13 AM   #29
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Can you shed a bit more light on this?

I'm going to remove the old outlet - Use my new outlet and connect both the white and black wires to the same connectors as they are on in the current setup. I then need to run a small piece of wire from the new outlet's ground screw (which is on the lower side of the outlet) to the grounding screw in the back, correct?

Where do I get this "bare or green pigtail wire? Can you link to it on homedepot's website?
Anyone?
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Old 08-27-2009, 10:25 AM   #30
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Changing 2 Prong To 3 Prong Outlet


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Anyone?
You don't need someone to post a link to HD for you. Maybe you're thinking too hard about this...

The quickest thing, if you have some same gauge wire around, is to strip a convenient length bare.

At HD (or where ever) you can buy pre-cut lengths of green ground wire, or you can buy off the spool in whatever length you need.

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