No Ground Conductors in Panel, but three prong outlets

Hello, New inspector here. I recently inspected two homes. Each home did not appear to have any ground wires connected to the neutral bus in the panel. But when I went around with my receptacle tester, I got a good reading and not a reading that says open ground? What gives? If there are no ground conductors in the panel, why do the receptacles appear grounded?

What was the wiring method used to feed the receptacles? Was it Armored Cable? Photo’s always help.

Yes, both had armored cable. I will see if I can post some pictures soon. Still need to download them.

In many cases the metallic jacket of the AC cable can serve as the EGC so you will not see any separate wire type EGC’s.

Thank you for the response. Is there any way to tell that the armored cable seves as the EGC?

You could also have bootleg grounds installed on the receptacles.3 light readers will appear normal.

When were the homes built?

Modern AC cable (manufactured after the mid 1950’s) will have an integral metal bonding strip which indicates that it is suitable as an EGC.

Maybe you should look at the grounding bus for grounding wires instead of the neutral bus?

He stated that there are no “ground conductors” in the panel which is consistent with using AC cable as a wiring method.

Sorry, this is all I read:

Happens to me too. :smiley:

In an effort to not sound too…ummm…Upidy!

  1. Those “ground wires” are actually Equipment Grounding Conductors (EGC) and they connect to the Grounded “Neutral” Bus, which is also the Equipment Grounding Conductor Bus in Service Equipment, Unless of course you add a separate one and provide a main bonding jumper ( or just a bonding jumper if one exists)

In terms of the different in Type AC Cable and Type MC Cable, both of which are armored cables technically speaking…but they do have a very clear different. But rather than explain all the differences and so on I will provide a link to a location where you can learn all you care to learn about the differences.