How to Ground an Outlet?

- May 02, 2020-

How to Ground an Outlet?



1.  Check your local electrical codes and schedule inspections. Several inspections and permits are required for most residential construction projects, especially when it involves electrical work. To make sure you're up to code, you may need to schedule a temporary service inspection, a rough-in inspection, and a final inspection. This needs to be done whether you're doing it yourself or hiring an electrician.


2.  Purchase a circuit tester at a local home repair store. A circuit tester plugs into the receptacle and has several light combinations to indicate the different problems a receptacle may have. If you're going to ground a receptacle, it's an important tool to have. You can purchase these at any home repair store. One model has a button to test GFCI receptacles by shutting off the outlet if it detects any excess current. It's a little more money but a better buy to verify the GFCI is also grounded


3.  Test the receptacles in your home. Plug the circuit tester into each receptacle and look at the indicator lights. If the lights indicate the receptacle is not grounded properly, mark the cover with a piece of masking tape. Move on to the next receptacle


4.  Turn off the power at the main electrical box. Either turn off the circuit breaker that controls the receptacles to the specific room or turn off the main switch for the whole house. If you only turn off the breaker, retest the receptacle with the circuit tester to ensure it's the correct one.


5 . Remove the cover plate of the receptacle. For the most part, cover plates will be attached with flathead screws, which means you should be able to easily remove them with a small, flathead screwdriver. If paint or wallpaper is in the way slightly, you might need to carefully cut around the receptacle with a utility knife to keep the wallpaper from tearing and making the wall look raggedy.