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Does this light need to be grounded?

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tomtheelder2020

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The LED shop light I bought to hang in my mother-in-law's garage has a three-prong plug but receptacles in her house are not grounded. If this was an incandescent fixture I would think nothing of using an adapter to connect it without ground. Is that OK for an LED light?
 

bud16415

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Everything should have a ground. With that being said I think it will work fine without one.

Being in a garage I would replace the outlet with a GFCI outlet and then you will be good.
 

tomtheelder2020

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Thanks Bud. I am replacing a light fixture over the washing machine with one that has a receptacle, where I will plug in the new light, but found that box is not grounded. The switch for the existing light will also control the new one so there will be no need to touch the light body or a pull cord. Guess I will take a chance on just using an adapter and leave it ungrounded.,
 

afjes_2016

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Is the fixture box metal? Did you actually with a meter check to see if the box is in fact grounded. Many older installations would wrap the ground wire around the cable clamp where it enters the box. You may not see the ground wire. If you have a meter check with the meter carefully hot wire to the metal box.

If you are sure you do not have a ground wire then I would go with Bud's suggestion of using a GFCI receptacle in replacement of the one that is there already.

GFCI receptacles are used all the time in homes where the circuit is not grounded for personal protection.
 

kok328

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Being in a garage, the outlet should already be GFCI or GFCI protected.
 

tomtheelder2020

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Afjes, I had never heard of grounding at the cable clamp; that is great info and I will check it out - thanks!

K, I don't know the year this house was built, maybe 70s, but it does not have GFCI receptacles and the breakers are not GFCI.
 

afjes_2016

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Tomtheelder202

It is very quite possible especially since you don't live there and are not that familiar with every single receptacle inside and outside of that house (even basement) as much so if you lived there it is very possible that any receptacle in the garage is GFCI protected already. Just because the receptacle itself is not a GFCI does not mean it is not gFCI protected. Besides being protected by a gFCi breaker it could be protected by another receptacle that is a GFCI - check all the GFCI receptacles in and outside the house. Press the test button on everyone you find and see if the garage receptacles are affected by powering off. To restore power to the GFCI after testing simply press the "Reset" button on it.

If you do in fact find a gFCI receptacle anywhere in or outside the house that kills power to the garage receptacles then no need to do anything else with the receptacle you want to uses - it is protected already. You would not place a GFCI receptacle as a replacement for a regular receptacle that is already being protected by another GFCI receptacle.
 

Eddie_T

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I have lived in a number of older houses and never got shocked until grounding became the norm (with the exception of accidentally touching hot and neutral). I thoughtlessly wired part of my house with the neutral and ground hot with no shocks. After I got beyond the reach of my extension cord I used a short piece of romex to jumper a cord into an outlet for a circuit already wired. Electricians often do that but I failed to turn the cord outlet upside down so I reversed hot and neutral. didn't realize my error until I decided to temporarily power up the panel and it blew the connector off that extension cord.
 

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