How do you write up an open neutral

Believe it or not, this is a first for me. I’ve had lots of open grounds and reverse polarity outlets, but not this one, and I don’t have a good write up for it.

GFCI outlet in Kitchen, and other outlet on same circuit, read an “open neutral”.

I didn’t pull the plate, but my guess it that the GFCI was installed incorrectly, but that’s strictly a guess.

How would you write it up?

I bet it is more like the GFCI didn’t close all the way after you tested it.
They open both sides on a device type GFCI. I would trip it and reset it a few times before I gave up. It may have never been tested and had some dirt in there. Well designed contacts “wipe” and tend to be self cleaning.

Since the neutral is needed for proper operation of the receptacles they would not be working.

Could you not just note that the receptacles do not work and to have them repaired?

I agree with this, as I have seen it many times, however, any GFCI that can be improperly reset, is defective and should be replaced.

Thanks guys. That helps a lot.

Hypothetically, what would you have said if I told you that there were just two regular outlets on the circuit?

Some GFCI’s will reset to a “reverse polarity” condition also.

After finding this 3 times in 3 years, I always check them again after resetting.

Tripping and resetting again or a few times will clear up the problem too.

Although your three-light tester will indicate reverse-polarity, that’s not the condition that actually exists.

I haven’t discovered what it really is, but when you plug anything else into the receptacle that draws current, the GFCI will trip again.

I have a letter somewhere from a Leviton rep. where we discussed this. I’ll see if I can dig it up, but in any event, these receptacles are defective and should be replaced.

Jeff that happens when the neutral contact doesn’t close and you have a load on a downstream receptacle. It reflects the hot on the <open> neutral. In a 3 light tester you could get all 3 lit.
If this is a one time occurance on a GFCI that has not been tested in years and clears up after tripping a couple times I probably would not replace it. If you are testing them regularly and it happens, toss it.
I suspect we will be seeing a lot of defective GFCIs since they are being made to hit a price point and there are plenty of counterfeits out there. The most dangerous are the ones that don’t “trip”.

Here is a pdf of an IAEI article about GFCIs