Ungrounded plugs

I have a selection in my report software when report on ungrounded three prong outlets that reads. [FONT=Verdana]If no ground is present “repair” can be as simple as filling the ground slot with epoxy. I have been questioning this and removing it from my reports. Is this a common recommendation that any of you use. [/FONT]

This goes against the listing of the receptacle. I have seen it done, but I do not endorse this practice nor would I recommend it.

Should I remove this sentence from my recommendations?

If the receptacle is a 3 hole version that is illegally done…because it is a 2 wire setup…explain they can use a GFCI on the circuit and follow the requirments that allow you to do this…and they can leave the 3 prong plugs in…if not…other suggestion would be to tell them to remove them and replace back with 2 prong recepts.

If they wish to ground the receptacles for use with 3 prong plugs…thats an option also…but they need to seek a qualified electrical contractor for information on that…do not overstep the suggestions.

I would replace it with, “Have a licensed electrician replace the ungrounded three prong outlet with a two prong ungrounded outlet” or “Have the circuit rewired with a proper ground”


Anatol…don’t forget the GFCI option…:wink:

Most people are concerned more about powering their computers than personal safety. I will add the gfci option to my list.



The GFCI option is really “OK” ?

(I always recommend having a qualified elec. further evaluate and leave it a that…)

I also just posted a similiar question on this MB…maybe you’ll see it.
Also, just visited your site for the 1st time and registered. I don’t post a lot but have always gotten some great eduacational info from you, Paul.


I have a local authority, that does not allow gfci’s to protect ungrounded circuits. Meaning he wants it to be either two prong, or rewired with an equipment ground. This is a report from another electrician, since he had to explain what the AHJ just told them to do.

Might want to get to know your AHJ, so you can prepare your clients for R/R stuff.

Just thinking out loud.


Does using a GFCI receptacle in place of an ungrounded repectacle, in your opinion, satisfy the requirements of 250.114? What I’m asking is, if I replace all my 2 prong ungrounded receptacles with 3 prong receptacles that are GFCI protected and correctly labeled, can I, per 250.114, plug my refridgerator in to it and still meet code.

What good does “further evaluation” do to your client? You have already done the “evaluation.” Now it’s time for correction.

I happen to believe anything in the way of uping the safety factor is acceptacle. I am not talking about an isolated circuit for a computer here…simply installing a GFCI to protect personal protection on 2 wire setups…NEC accepts it…and if the lessor of the BEST thing…I accept it.

So are you saying that a local AHJ is Re-Writing Code on his own time?..Quite Interesting as I believe I could fight that argument if I was local but alas…most do not question the AHJ…

Yep…get to know your local AHJ…:slight_smile:


IN my view the requirements of 250.114 simple allow for the use of a listed double insulated appliances, motor-operated hand -held tools, stationary and fixed motor operated tools and os on as to not requiring an equipment grounding connection.

[FONT=Times-Roman]****[FONT=Times-Bold]250.114 Equipment Connected by Cord and Plug.

Under any of the conditions described in (1) through (4),
exposed non

–current-carrying metal parts of cord-andplug-
connected equipment likely to become energized shall
be grounded.

*Exception: Listed tools, listed appliances, and listed equipment
covered in (2) through (4) shall not be required to be
grounded where protected by a system of double insulation
or its equivalent. Double insulated equipment shall be distinctively

(1) In hazardous (classi
fied) locations (see Articles 500
through 517)
(2) Where operated at over 150 volts to ground

*Exception No. 1: Motors, where guarded, shall not be required
to be grounded.
Exception No. 2: Metal frames of electrically heated appliances,
exempted by special permission, shall not be required
to be grounded, in which case the frames shall be
permanently and effectively insulated from ground.

(3) In residential occupancies:
a. Refrigerators, freezers, and air conditioners
b. Clothes-washing, clothes-drying, dish-washing machines;
kitchen waste disposers; information technology[FONT=Times-Roman][size=2]
equipment; sump pumps and electrical
aquarium equipment
c. Hand-held motor-operated tools, stationary and

xed motor-operated tools, light industrial motoroperated
d. Motor-operated appliances of the following types:
hedge clippers, lawn mowers, snow blowers, and
wet scrubbers
e. Portable handlamps

I don’t see where the NEC limits the acceptacles of a Fridge on a GFCI if the client so chooses…but it also states that if the above applies it does not need a ground as well. Either way in my mind they both comply.



Not rewriting, just omitting where you can use a GFCI on an ungrounded circuit.

I guess it’s his job to make ‘stronger’ ‘safer’ rules, to protect those who pay his salary.

Go figure…


I have this in my report — it is compiled from various donors on this board and tell me what you think…

**The use of three-pronged 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-pronged receptacles are still available and should be installed to eliminate this false sense of security. Three-pronged 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-pronged” 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-pronged” grounded receptacle. **


Considering a GROUNDED receptacle will not save you NEARLY like GFCI Receptacle will. I would think the safety aspect would be within the GFCI…just does not give you a grounded plug…but the GFCI is safer.

OOOPPPsss, I conveyed this wrong. "SAFER"for the equipment. If the manufacturer designed their products with a grounded plug, then the equipment must be plugged into a grounded receptacle. Equipment is already designed to be UL/people ‘safe’, and part of a product’s design is to be plugged into a grounded receptale.

So “safer”, per manufacturers instructions/design. If you want to put in a gfci after you run a new grounded circuit, that’s OK, but then it’s your choice. However, grounded receptacles on an ungrounded circuit wasn’t a choice.

tom <== Not an effective poster. :stuck_out_tongue:

lol…Ok now…you know what I mean…in an OLD home…are you going to be nearly as concerned for 95% of the standard appliances that do not need a ground plug…or for the safety of the older wiring and the process of NO grounding at all…GFCI adds a safer mentality to many areas of the house…if needed…

Lets not be so BLACK and WHITE…lol…these are options that the NEC clearly gives the consumer.

Not to mention…what if they put in those nice old 3 prong plugs anyway…?

If you’re referring to my post just ahead of yours, notice the “Recommendation:”

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.

lol…No Jae…not yours…lol