Don’t panic if your house has Multiwire Branch Circuits

January 17, 2023 | Buyer Inspections

This article is about the multiwire branch circuit wiring technique in home electrics. It is not common. This panel might appear like that you would find at any home, but there is a key difference that a knowledgeable inspector should recognize and explain.But first, let’s cover some basics to set the stage.Conductor -> Wire -> CableA conductor is the metal that carries electricity. That metal is copper or aluminum. A wire is a bare conductor or a conductor covered with a plastic insulator. So, whether we say conductor or wire, it is the same for practical purposes. Two or more wires covered in a sheathing or jacket is a cable as shown.Home electrical systems are mostly single strand insulated copper wires in 2-, 3-, or 4-wire cables. For this topic, we focus on 3-wire cable.Typical use of 3-wire cable3-wire cables are most often used in one of these ways:In 240 Volt … Continued

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Two Ways To Fix 2-Prong Outlets

April 13, 2020 | Electric Inspections

Homes built through the 1950s had ungrounded (2-prong) receptacles. That was the norm then but is an inconvenience today. Chester County Home Inspections often find outlets with Open Ground faults or other anomalies. Homeowners often simply install 3-prong outlets in the place of the 2-pronged ones, leaving the grounding conductor open. The electric tester shows that ungrounded defect.  You can address the ungrounded receptacles issue with GFCI receptacles as the National Electrical Code explains:Non-grounded receptacles shall be permitted to be replaced with:(a) a non-grounded receptacle;(b) a GFCI type of receptacle. These receptacles shall be marked “No Equipment Ground”; or(c) grounding-type receptacle where supplied through a GFCI. Grounding-type receptacles supplied through the GFCI shall be marked “GFCI Protected” and “No Equipment Ground”InterpretationOption A allows you to replace a broken 2-prong with a new 2-prong.Option B allows you to replace the ungrounded 2-prong with a GFCI receptacle AND properly label it as ungrounded.Option C … Continued

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