3 prong receptacle w/out equipment ground wire

How would you respond in the following situation?

A home has been remodeled and rewired. All of the wires leaving the panel are 2-wire w/ground. The home has grounded receptacles. The contractor wiring the home pulled the 2-wire w/ground to the walls and left the old 2-wire without a ground in the wall, therefore the equipment ground on the receptacles is not wired. I am going back to inspect this home tomorrow and I suspect that at the interior walls, they pulled the new 2-wire w/ground into the wall, but at the exterior walls where access is difficult, they may have just jumped the neutral over to the ground prong on the receptacle to try and fool me. I am going to remove some exterior wall receptacles and check for this. How would you respond to this? Is there any tolerance for a situation like this.

Whenever I find something like that I explain the differences and possibilities to the client.

And this goes in the report…


**The use of three-hole ground-type receptacles on a two-wire electrical system gives the impression that safety protection is present in the circuit, when in reality it is not. Older style two-hole receptacles are still available and should be installed to eliminate this false sense of security. Three-hole receptacles may be more convenient (and often less expensive), but are often installed without giving consideration to this situation. **
**The use of a three-pronged plug in an ungrounded receptacle can be a safety concern. The plug has the grounding provision for a reason and electrical appliances should always be used for the function they were intended to perform. **
**All such installations should be labeled “No Equipment Ground” on each receptacle that applies. **Grounding of all “three-pronged” receptacles or protection with a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) on each is recommended for safety reasons, prior to the close of escrow or after taking possession of the property.

**“Two-hole” outlets are not grounded and should never be used with a “three-pronged” plug. Adapters have been devised for this usage, but there is still no adequate ground and such adapters are not always safe. Until the electrical system is upgraded for “three-pronged” usage, it would be prudent to not use adapters, extension cords, or “three-pronged” plugs in any way. Consider that “three-pronged” plugs have been engineered for use with a “three-hole” grounded receptacle. **


Jea, that is an EXCELLENT and clear explanation that you use in your reports.

To answer your question, I would have no tolerence for this. I would describe the situation, inform the client what a bootleg ground is, let them know it is hazardous, and recommend repairs by a licensed electrician.