Hot ground reverse

Help Support House Repair Talk:

swimmer_spe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
755
Reaction score
132
I had to redo a wiring job from the previous owner. I wired everything up right. I then turn on the breaker and check an outlet and get a hot ground reverse on my tester. I think the problem is there connection to the power supply, which is not a breaker, but a plug into a wall outlet. I am thinking the 2 wires are reversed on the plug that gets plugged in. Would I be right that it would be a simple fix by rewiring the plug?
 

kok328

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2007
Messages
3,088
Reaction score
339
Wire the outlet with correct polarity and anything plugged into it should test OK. If not, then start checking correct polarity on whatever it is your plugging in. Apparently, something is not wired correctly.
 

JoeD

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2006
Messages
1,740
Reaction score
344
Hot ground reverse is often a sign of an open neutral on those plugin testers.
 

swimmer_spe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
755
Reaction score
132
OP here. My plan is to start with the plug in and wire it up properly according to the way it was connected on the other end. hen check outlet. If I still have an issue, I will chase other connections.
 

kok328

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2007
Messages
3,088
Reaction score
339
Hot ground reverse is often a sign of an open neutral on those plugin testers.
not sure what brand/model tester the OP is using but, mine has a "Open Neutral" reading in addition to "Hot/Ground Reversed".
 

swimmer_spe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
755
Reaction score
132
OP here.
I have a potentially bigger issue. The problem is not the wiring of the male plug or the other end that is wired up. The problem is in the house. I may need an electrician as it might be at the panel. I am not touching a panel. Ironically, there are a few issues with electricity in this house that I was planning on getting someone in to fix. I'll add this to the list.
 

BuzzLOL

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2015
Messages
167
Reaction score
75
Your house prolly had a botched wiring job and then 'fixes' to make things look right and as you started correcting the mess, you unfixed the fixes... which is why we hate to follow somebody who didn't know what they were doing...
Pulling the main fuses/switching off the main circuit breakers should make everything below them in the panel dead... of course, want to verify that with a meter before touching anything... and also test to make sure even the outside wiring coming into the panel is correct... hot wires on left and right... neutral/ground in center... hot wire to neutral/ground is 110-120 volts... hot wire to hot wire is 220-240 volts... can also pull the outside meter, just tell the meter reader to reseal it with a fresh metal seal clip...
I was working on a girlfriend's house trailer wiring and someone hadn't wired the clothes dryer just as the cord is layed out... left wire to left terminal... center to center... right to right... for some reason they did the difficult thing of swapping left and center wires on the terminals... this ended up electrifying the dryer body and entire outer metal shell/metal shell doors of the trailer! The rear door of the trailer didn't have steps by it so her son jumped down barefooted onto the concrete slab while holding onto the metal door handle and was frozen there by the current and had to be knocked loose with a board... and after that is when she asked me to look at it... well, actually, she was more concerned about the dryer not working...
 

afjes_2016

Established Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2016
Messages
514
Reaction score
236
...I have a potentially bigger issue...I am not touching a panel...
Good for you! You recognized your limitations and went in the direction of safety. Working in a panel can be dangerous unless you know what you are doing and more importantly you respect electricity - not fear it.

If you feel uncomfortable with the thought that there are other issues with the electric then by all means call in a licensed electrician. It is well worth the investment. Let the electrician educate you in the way of what he/she is doing and why. It is good to have an overall understanding of how it all works.
 

Eddie_T

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2015
Messages
381
Reaction score
211
@swimmer_spe Please be sure to post the fix when the problem is solved. That's how the knowledge base grows so others can be helped.
 
Last edited:

ctviggen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2020
Messages
59
Reaction score
17
Location
Connecticut
You could take off the outside metal cover of the panel and take a picture. That might help everyone figure out what's going on. A voltmeter can help in these situations, too.
 

afjes_2016

Established Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2016
Messages
514
Reaction score
236
ctviggen: swimmer_spe has basically reached his limitations of his comfort level in the panel itself.

With what has been described so far it is best a licensed electrician check on this in person. There could be issues that we can not see by just looking at a picture of the "guts" of the inside of the panel.

I know how swimmer_spe feels. Respecting electricity is important.
 
Joined
Apr 12, 2020
Messages
22
Reaction score
7
Location
Jacksonville, FL
this helped me to remember, when I was 1st doing home wiring, infrequently, I read this somewhere: "black on brass, save your ***...." Now I think of that EVERY time I attach a black / hot wire.... ha ha ha
 

ctviggen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2020
Messages
59
Reaction score
17
Location
Connecticut
ctviggen: swimmer_spe has basically reached his limitations of his comfort level in the panel itself.

With what has been described so far it is best a licensed electrician check on this in person. There could be issues that we can not see by just looking at a picture of the "guts" of the inside of the panel.

I know how swimmer_spe feels. Respecting electricity is important.
True. I guess as someone with a BSEE and MSEE...I just think differently from most. (Though I've known many EEs I would not want entering a panel or doing any electrical work for that matter. I just happen to be one of those who likes to do that stuff.)
 

swimmer_spe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
755
Reaction score
132
True. I guess as someone with a BSEE and MSEE...I just think differently from most. (Though I've known many EEs I would not want entering a panel or doing any electrical work for that matter. I just happen to be one of those who likes to do that stuff.)
I have made it a personal rule that I do not touch 240V or higher. That means if I need to rewire the plug for my dryer, or if I need to open the panel, I am calling someone. I hate electrical to begin with.
 

bud16415

Fixer Upper
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Feb 5, 2013
Messages
6,128
Reaction score
2,243
Location
Erie, PA
I have made it a personal rule that I do not touch 240V or higher. That means if I need to rewire the plug for my dryer, or if I need to open the panel, I am calling someone. I hate electrical to begin with.
Electrocution between 120v and 240v is like saying would you like a 1000 pound weight put on your chest or a 2000 pound weight is my opinion. Both need to be shown the same respect and with the same knowledge. As both have what it takes to kill you if the current path is thru your bodies core.



Good practice is what it takes and no shortcuts if the power is killed to the section you are working on. Switching a breaker off makes that circuit safe. Switching the main off makes the breakers safe. Pulling the meter makes the main safe and so on.



Sometimes during trouble shooting you need to test things under power that’s where having a good quality meter made for the job and understanding how to use it safely is the key. When it comes time to work on it you want it dead and then you want to verify it is dead.

I worked with an old industrial electrician when I was an apprentice and he gave me a big 100 ton mechanical press to rewire totally. He pulled the mains feeding the press gave me a pile of parts and a sketch and said go for it. He comes back in a week when I was done looks it over a little puts the 550v fuses back in and tells me to stand way back. He gets to the side of the switch panel turns his head away and puts a finger in his ear on that side and throws the switch and I thought he was being funny. The press worked fine so I did good I guess. Later I saw him go thru that every time. By the time I retired it was mandatory for all electricians to suit up before throwing a switch, full face PPE vest and gloves. The funny part was the average worker turning it on and off wasn’t required. I always remembered that and to this day when I reset even a breaker I stand to the side and look away.
 

swimmer_spe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
755
Reaction score
132
Electrocution between 120v and 240v is like saying would you like a 1000 pound weight put on your chest or a 2000 pound weight is my opinion. Both need to be shown the same respect and with the same knowledge. As both have what it takes to kill you if the current path is thru your bodies core.
1 amp will kill. I know this to be true. The panel has 200 amps, the circuit is 15amps. A little less.

Good practice is what it takes and no shortcuts if the power is killed to the section you are working on. Switching a breaker off makes that circuit safe. Switching the main off makes the breakers safe. Pulling the meter makes the main safe and so on.
I don't touch a circuit unless the breaker is shut off by me and I verify that it is off. I don't know how to pull a meter.
 

Eddie_T

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2015
Messages
381
Reaction score
211
I have always liked electrical circuits but detested plumbing as it seems to be locked into past designs; wax, plumbers paste, stem packing, etc. Just don't believe it when someone tells you electricity always seeks the shortest path to ground. Actually electricity isn't seeking anyhing it follows all conductive paths that lead back to the source (transformer). We just have to be careful not to let our bodies become a conductive path to the source either directly or via the ground.
 

swimmer_spe

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
755
Reaction score
132
I have always liked electrical circuits but detested plumbing as it seems to be locked into past designs; wax, plumbers paste, stem packing, etc. Just don't believe it when someone tells you electricity always seeks the shortest path to ground. Actually electricity isn't seeking anyhing it follows all conductive paths that lead back to the source (transformer). We just have to be careful not to let our bodies become a conductive path to the source either directly or via the ground.
A loose connection with plumbing is easy enough to find. With electrical, not so much. You can revers the hot and cold lines on plumbing with it sstill working reasonably safely, but do that on electricity and you end up posting about it online.
 
Top