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Old 01-13-2013, 01:45 PM   #16
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


FYI - A GFCI is like a bank teller. It "counts" how much electricity is going out one wire and coming back on the other wire. If some electricity is "unaccounted for", then the GFCI instantly shuts off the electricity!

So if someone was electrocuted, "some" of the electricity would flow through their body to "ground". Then the "bank teller" would notice some electricity "missing" and instantly shut of the electricity on the GFCI outlet.

A GFCI tester simulates this by leaking a small amount of electricity to the 3rd ground prong of the outlet. That will not work if that 3rd ground prong is not connected to anything. However the GFCI tester should work just fine in the GFCI outlets below the panel (with new wire going to them).

How a GFCI works...
http://ecmweb.com/content/how-gfcis-work

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Old 01-13-2013, 03:42 PM   #17
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


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It is current code to use gfci's to protect 2 wire ungrounded outlets.

I have done this in my own house, but in my case I was able to replace the first receptacle in the chain with a gfci outlet.

The remaining outlets are required to be marked 'no equipment ground' and 'gfci protected outlet'. These stickers actually come with the gfci outlets for exactly that purpose.
White receptacles with ivory covers? Tacky

Oops, I have a few in my house
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:06 PM   #18
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


What your electrician did was make the circuits safe -- for humans. You are now protected from errant ground fault conditions, since you obviously had 3-prong outlets connected to non-grounded circuits.

While this procedure protects YOU -- the occupants of the house -- it does NOT protect your equipment! Things like plug-in surge devices will not work properly connected to these older non-grounded circuits.
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:19 PM   #19
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


Exactly what I was thinking. Sounds like he took the easy way out.
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Old 01-13-2013, 06:37 PM   #20
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


He may have taken the easy way out but what he did is perfectly to code and would pass an inspection.
It depends on what you requested him to do and what the contract said as to whether he fulfilled what you hired and paid him to do or not.
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Old 01-14-2013, 10:25 AM   #21
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


He could have turned the first receptacle on each circuit into a GFCI instead. This would have looked better but then you would have had to hunt around for the correct GFCI whenever one tripped. There are plenty of threads on here from people hunting for GFCIs. These are more accessible and they are all in one place.

Plus GFCIs are bulky and your existing boxes may be too small.
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Old 01-14-2013, 11:06 AM   #22
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old outlet attached to gfci downstairs


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He could have turned the first receptacle on each circuit into a GFCI instead...
But with an old house, finding those first receptacles could have taken many hours of the electrician's time. And that would have cost the OP more money.

Thus another reason why I like the idea of placing the GFCI's under the panel for the old wiring.

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