Inspection Tips by Joe Farsetta



I notice you have a special link on your main page called Paige Peters?

Is this a Nachi project?
Just noticed the video is on

Personal Inspector site right ?

It’s his personal site to sell his educational products.

Can someone explain to me how a two prong outlet is grounded and how we should not state in our reports that they are an ungrounded system.?

From Joe’s comments on the subject.

I failed to comprehend that part of it. :slight_smile:

Well if we are critiquing I noticed at the start that the stringer looked like a riser.


I noticed that too Bob. :slight_smile:

thanks Ben…a number of good points in a very short time …of course it is always easy to pick something apart, but I appreciate your efforts Sir…

No doubt.
I did not wish to go on and do that.

I am not critiquing, I am asking a simple question that confused me, and my wife says that is not hard. :mrgreen:

Ben does an excellent job as well as Joe, I just want someone to explain the two prong deal a little better.
I certainly would not want to word it wrong in a report, whenever the hell I get another one to write. :mrgreen::wink:

And Bob, by order of importance and safety, mine goes first. :wink:

Marcel I’m only guessing here but my best guess would be that with a two prong plug, there may be a third wire terminated at the box, and there is no way of telling by viewing the plug only…like i said just a guess but i have seen this before…
and for the record I wasn’t picking on you or Robert…sorry if it appeared that way my Friend…

To me it’s a play on words. The receptacle can be grounded, without being a grounding receptacle. Either way, only a grounding receptacle that is properly grounded can provide protection. WRITE IT UP!:cool:

The other issue is you cannot tell without opening up the outlet.

No problem here Jim, just trying to fully understand a possible confusion.

My house has still got two prong receptacles, and wired with 14/2 with an 18 gauge ground wire that does not go anywhere because it has to place to tie too, so most of them are cut off.
I have been replacing with GFCI’s as I go, but at $16 a pop, it is expensive.
So I am confused as to how it is not suppose to be called ungrounded. :slight_smile:

Never had a friend call me Robert.

Not looking to find the faults ,as it is a private video not representing NACHI Education.

Marcel, that 18ga grounding conductor grounds the metal box. The frame of the non-grounding receptacle is grounded by its attachment screws. The issue is the grounding system stops there. The three prong grounding receptacle would allow the system to be extended beyond the outlet box.

I have found a bunch of these over the years Marcel with the ground wire terminated at the back of the box, You can extend that wire to a three prong outlet and be fine…if the third wire is missing altogether the Gfci outlet is the simplest solution in my carpenter type opinion…My last house was similar to the one you describe and in the boxes where no third wire was available i used the gfci outlets …I’m sure one of the more sparkified members can make more sense of it

If you have a grounded system as we have been discussing, a simple grounding receptacle with a ground screw pig tail is sufficient for all convenience outlets. GFCI’s will not do a thing for you since they need to be bonded to the system also. Residential grade grounding receptacles are all that is needed in convenience locations with a pig tailed ground wire. They cost around $1.00 for both.

Drew, are you saying that a pig tail to ground the box would give you the same grounding protection as would a three prong?

First of all, you could only use a two prong male plug, like a lamp or something, so if I am standing in water, would that two prong pig tail grounded to the box accomplish anything if I am touching the metal parts.?

Still confused. :slight_smile:

No, you still need to change the device to a three prong (Grounding) receptacle. The pig tail wire will bond the device to the box, which is already bonded to the grounding system.

The purpose of changing the device is to make the grounding system available to the three prong appliance that is plugged into it.

I think Joe Farsetta makes a poor example of this in the video. When you open the panel cover you will see all of the ground wires there, and then you know you have a grounded system. The receptacles though, are not grounding type, which means that a three prong adapter that attaches to the coverplate screw will convert the receptacle to a grounding type.(sometimes) This conversion method however is so unreliable that I would not recommend that to a client. The coverplate screw is attached to the device frame which is attached to the box by two screws. You can see several places for failure to occur.

It is best just to write up that the outlets are non-grounding type, but that they have a grounding system. The outlets should be upgraded to three prong type by a licensed electrician. Easy fix.