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Home electrical question. #5394014 04/04/20 10:20 PM
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73guna Offline OP
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Put a GFCI outlet in bathroom and outlet tester keeps reading bad ground.
Here is what I did...
Jumped a 14/2 wire from an outlet in adjacent room.
My house was built in '59, two prong outlets, no grounds. Ran a separate ground wire from GFCI outlet to cold water pipe and attached with ground clamp, still bad ground. Unhooked from cold water and ran to main water line before meter, still bad ground. Unhooked and then ran straight to ground on panel, still getting bad ground.
The GFI still trips using the test button.
Is the ground wire needed?
What am I doing wrong?

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394017 04/04/20 10:22 PM
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JHZR2 Offline
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Can’t think right now about the diagnosis, but I’ve seen where GFCI is accepted in lieu of a safety ground as a protective device. So ground is not needed in all jurisdictions (check code).

I’m thinking perhaps polarity is reversed?

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394034 04/04/20 10:48 PM
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Sounds like reversed polarity to me also. I replaced every single receptacle in our 1953 house, and several of the existing outlets were 2-prong (had a grounded metal box, though). I found more than one where the wide pin was hot, and the small pin was neutral, opposite of how it's supposed to be. YMMV. This is why I ALWAYS check my work with a multimeter when I'm done. Measure from what you think is hot to ground, you should get 120v; hot to neutral should also be 120v; neutral to ground should be a few ohms max.


'11 Fusion SE 2.5L - 93k miles - HK 0w20 syn, Carquest Blue filter
'08 Sedona LX LWB 3.8L - 149k miles - Havoline HM 5w20, Fram XG filter
Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394036 04/04/20 10:52 PM
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Jethro_Bob Offline
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Did you check the service ground outside on or near the meter? GFI's do "go bad" and may need replacement.

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: Jethro_Bob] #5394042 04/04/20 11:02 PM
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Klutch9 Offline
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Originally Posted by Jethro_Bob
Did you check the service ground outside on or near the meter? GFI's do "go bad" and may need replacement.


This too. I've had a GFCI receptacle fail on me after one use.


'11 Fusion SE 2.5L - 93k miles - HK 0w20 syn, Carquest Blue filter
'08 Sedona LX LWB 3.8L - 149k miles - Havoline HM 5w20, Fram XG filter
Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394047 04/04/20 11:08 PM
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Get rid of the wire you ran to the water pipe. If there is ground wire in any of the wiring you don’t have a grounding system in the house. The GFCI will work properly without it but an outlet tester will always show a missing ground.

Do not try to rig something up to get it to work. You will end up causing more problems than you fix. If it bugs you get an electrician to update the service and run the proper grounds.


Sparks fly from my fingers.

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Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394053 04/04/20 11:30 PM
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73guna Offline OP
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Ground looks intact at service.
I should have mentioned I had the meter moved years ago during a remodel and panel was upgraded to 150 amps I believe.
All grounded outlets I've added test fine.
I'll check polarity on outlet I'm drawing power from in the morning.
Will let you all know what I find out.

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394267 04/05/20 08:38 AM
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Oildudeny Offline
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no ground is needed in older 2 wire systems the gfi acts as the ground. those little stickers that come with the gfi you'd use the sticker that says no equipment ground. yes i would check that your polarity is correct "hot/neutral" reversed. also check all your neutrals on the bus bar in your electrical panel could have a loose neutral.

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394358 04/05/20 10:05 AM
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Fitter30 Offline
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Possibly!of no ground rod. Bad connections at panel or rod.

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394389 04/05/20 10:41 AM
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BigCahuna Offline
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If you can read 120 volts between the wires in your bathroom thats good. Now try to read 120 volts between the hot or black wire to the box. If there's no voltage between either wire to the box, there is no grounded wiring. If your house has the old cloth style wiring you won't read anything to ground. If your house has BX wiring, you should be able to read voltage to ground. If you wire up your GFI and there's power to it, push the test button. It should trip. That's the best your gonna get. The only other option is to rewire your house with new modern grounded cable at this point.,,,

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394571 04/05/20 01:41 PM
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73guna Offline OP
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Checked ground wire connection at meter to panel, no breaks connections tight.
Checked all neutral and ground connections at panel, all tight.
Checked polarity at GFCI and outlet I'm drawing power from and another outlet upstream, polarity correct on all outlets.
Had a new GFCI outlet laying around so I swapped them out. GFCI trips when pressing test button. Still get a bad ground light on tester.
Like some have said this is the best I'm gonna get short of a rewire.

I'll leave it as is knowing that it's acceptable with my old wiring.

Thank all for the advice.

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5394636 04/05/20 03:12 PM
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Oildudeny Offline
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Welcome

Re: Home electrical question. [Re: 73guna] #5407012 04/18/20 01:39 PM
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73guna Offline OP
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*Update*

I ended up having a bad outlet tester.
I disassembled the tester and found loose wire/solder connection from ground prong to circuit board.
Purchased a new tester and all outlets that were in question before tested correct.

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