Testing 2 Prong Outlets

I was wondering if anyone tests two prong outlets when they find them in an inspection to see if they are functioning, and if so, how? Thanks.

By testing do you mean is there 120 volts present?

Any home with two prong outlets needs upgrading NOW !!!

These work


2 prong.jpg

I always do. I use this tool that has two prong things on it. One goes in the hot side of the outlet. The other goes on the metal screw in the faceplate. If the tool lights up it is grounded. If it does not, then it is not grounded. You can find them for like 10 dollars. they should be tested regardless of the fact that they should be upgraded

I dont remember what its called. I was just taught to use them at AHIT

Why ???
I never found a home that had all two wire outlets with a ground .
Do you test all plugs in the house or just some .
I am sure when you take the panel cover off you know immediately this home needs upgrading .
Usually Knob and tube They did use two wire cable in the Fifties but it needs to be upgraded NOW .

The box holding the receptacle may be grounded, but not the two wire system.

Yes. And I pretty much got the answers I expected. Does anyone else test for ground like Juan does?

Here most homes are wired with BX thus a ground is provided.

I found this site. Its called a pig tail tester apparently.

I use a two prong splitter to see if the slots are still tight enough and a non contact voltage detector to see if voltage is present. After all that, my report recommends upgrading or GFCI blah blah…

I disagree. There is no “requirement” that they are changed out. As long as the proper type of equipment is plugged into the receptacle, there is absolutely no issue.

Additionally, the BX is not a sufficient grounding source and should not be used as such.

If you use one of these testers how would you know if the neutral were broken?

Thanks Jeff but I bet if it was your home it would be upgraded immediately.
I would still write needs upgrade immediately…

To a degree you are correct. I would ensure that proper grounding is established at every receptacle where grounding may be necessry - laundry area, garage, refrigerator outlet, etc.

However, I would not be concerned at all with most wall receptacles where I would plug in lamps, alam clocks, phone chargers, etc.

Additionally, I don’t write my reports based on my “preferences,” therefore, I don’t arbitrarily recommend changing-out non-grounding type receptacles with grounding type or adding GFCI protection.

Just having fun Jeff I am sure we both always have happy satisfied Clients .
All the best … Roy

Still a lt of 2 wire systems here . most things do not require a ground . We be tared and feathered Roy if we said upgrading immediately here . I just inform them anything that needs a ground should be only used in a grounded circuit.

WOW!!! tar and feathers I do not think I would like that . 2 wire sounds better to me now . Thanks for the warning… Roy