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Maybe a simple question...I apologize up front.

My inlaws built their house in 1969. The whole house has grounded three prong outlets except in the garage. There are three two prong outlets.

They want to install a small second fridge in the garage that has three prongs. Is it safe to just install a GFCI in the garge to handle this?

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Maybe a simple question...I apologize up front.

My inlaws built their house in 1969. The whole house has grounded three prong outlets except in the garage. There are three two prong outlets.

They want to install a small second fridge in the garage that has three prongs. Is it safe to just install a GFCI in the garge to handle this?

First check to see that the cables that feed the receptacles. If they have grounding wires, it might be simple enough to provide grounding to the receptacles.

After that, it's a good idea to provide the GFCI protection to those receptacles whether they're grounded or not.

If you're concerned about a GFCI tripping, install a freezer alarm.

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Maybe a simple question...I apologize up front.

My inlaws built their house in 1969. The whole house has grounded three prong outlets except in the garage. There are three two prong outlets.

They want to install a small second fridge in the garage that has three prongs. Is it safe to just install a GFCI in the garge to handle this?

Unless they used old wire (in addition to using old receptacles) a ground wire should be present.

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If the boxes are metal, sometimes you'll find that the ground conductor is spiral wrapped around the cable sheath and clamped under the securing clamp where the cable enters the box. In these cases, the metal box is grounded. You can simply install a three prong receptacle and it will be grounded by its metal mounting tabs being fastened to the metal box.

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If the boxes are metal, sometimes you'll find that the ground conductor is spiral wrapped around the cable sheath and clamped under the securing clamp where the cable enters the box. In these cases, the metal box is grounded. You can simply install a three prong receptacle and it will be grounded by its metal mounting tabs being fastened to the metal box.

It's not quite that simple. There are some rules that must be followed.

Article 250.146 ( in the 2011 NEC ) covers this issue.

You need to remove the fiber ( cardboard) screw retaining washer from the receptacle. You must have direct metal to metal contact between the box and the mounting yoke of the receptacle ( using the screw to carry the ground is not allowed).

If the device is in a 1900 box ( 4" square) and the receptacle is a cover mounted receptacle then the cover screw mounting holes must be a flat ,non-raised portion of the cover in order to provide the best possible surface to surface contact

If the outlet is changed it must also meet the rules in 406.12 in the 2011 NEC. That says that it must be a tamper proof receptacle as well

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Article 250.114 also needs to be considered.

250.114 Equipment Connected by Cord and Plug. Under

any of the conditions described in 250.114(1) through (4),

exposed, normally non?current-carrying metal parts of

cord-and-plug-connected equipment shall be connected to

the equipment grounding conductor.

(3) In residential occupancies:

a. Refrigerators, freezers, and air conditioners

b. Clothes-washing, clothes-drying, dish-washing machines;

ranges; kitchen waste disposers; information

technology equipment; sump pumps and electrical

aquarium equipment

c. Hand-held motor-operated tools, stationary and

fixed motor-operated tools, and light industrial

motor-operated tools

d. Motor-operated appliances of the following types:

hedge clippers, lawn mowers, snow blowers, and

wet scrubbers

e. Portable handlamps

Installing a GFI still would not comply with this section.

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If the outlet is changed it must also meet the rules in 406.12 in the 2011 NEC. That says that it must be a tamper proof receptacle as well

How long does the exemption for old stock non tamper resistant outlets last?

Seems there was an allowance of some sort when this rule came out.

Tamper Proof receptacles were added to dwellings under the 2008 NEC. The NEC made no exception for "old stock". The local jurisdiction may have an exception. Electricians just used the non tamper proof ones in areas the TR was not required until they used up the old staock

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Since when does replacing a duplex receptacle require upgrading the branch circuit to current code?

Your not required to upgrade the branch circuit ( well maybe - you have the option) , but you are required to install the code compliant receptacle. So if your replacing a standard outlet that by today's code should be a GFCI , your are required to install a GFCI device or GFCI protect the circuit.

The same goes for areas that now require AFCI protection. When a receptacle is replaced on a circuit that would require AFCI protection you are required to install a AFCI receptacle ( or protect the circuit)

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