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  1. #1
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    Duplex receptacle orientation code ?

    With a standard grounded 15 or 20 amp receptacle - does the NEC specify the orientation of the ground portion? Does it have to be up? Does it have to be down?

    If it does: what is the section of the NEC which addresses this issue?
    PHM
    --------
    The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking.

  2. #2
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    Now a days I see them all ground up. Where as back in the day it was vise versa.
    I came to the conclusion that if a spatula slid down the wall it would hit the ground first.

  3. #3
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    I've got a touch of OCD in me. Nothing too medical, it's just a hunch of mine.

    Outlets need to be installed with the ground down. You'll never see an outlet with the ground up in my house.

    On a bit of a tangent, did I ever tell you of the time I was a child of maybe 10, and I intentionally dropped a penny on the hot legs of a plug that wasn't all the way in? Oh yeah, got to meet mister sparky . . . LOL
    If you were a real tech, you'd solder a relay on that board and call it good to go.

    I do a triple evac with nitro to remove non condensables.

    I use 56% silver on everything except steel.

    Did you really need the " If you were a real tech " ??

  4. #4
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    There is nothing in code denoting either direction. All code states is that it has to be installed per manufacturer's instructions. I've heard excuses from every Sparky trying to support either way but it's all crap. The best one I've heard is that if you have the ground up and the cover plate is loose it would hit the ground and it wouldn't be a safety issue. But I'd rather see the plate hit the hot and common and trip the breaker so no one can get zapped.

    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    Thread Starter
    I find the ground-up orientation disturbing to look at. Although ground-down does look like an annoyed Frenchman's face. Still; I find that a far more acceptable appearance.

    I have heard many times that ground-up is safer as a thin metal object sliding between a plug and a ground-down receptacle could produce a short and fire hazard - whereas a ground-up orientation would present the ground first and so prevent the short.

    This "logic" is ridiculous as most plugs do not have a ground prong and so the H and N prongs would be equally accessible for short circuiting in either receptacle orientation.

    But: none of that addresses my question. Which is: Does The NEC specifically address receptacle orientation?

    PHM
    ----------------


    Quote Originally Posted by VTP99 View Post
    Now a days I see them all ground up. Where as back in the day it was vise versa.
    I came to the conclusion that if a spatula slide down the wall it would hit the ground first.
    PHM
    --------
    The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking.

  6. #6
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    Iowa City, IA
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    Our University design standards require ground up. This is said to prevent things like paperclips or other metal objects from sliding down the wall and arcing. Legit concern in an office environment I guess.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poodle Head Mikey View Post
    I find the ground-up orientation disturbing to look at. Although ground-down does look like an annoyed Frenchman's face. Still; I find that a far more acceptable appearance.

    I have heard many times that ground-up is safer as a thin metal object sliding between a plug and a ground-down receptacle could produce a short and fire hazard - whereas a ground-up orientation would present the ground first and so prevent the short.


    This "logic" is ridiculous as most plugs do not have a ground prong and so the H and N prongs would be equally accessible for short circuiting in either receptacle orientation.

    But: none of that addresses my question. Which is: Does The NEC specifically address receptacle orientation?

    PHM
    ----------------
    No there is no NEC code for orientation.
    NEC Article 406

  8. #8
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    I have never installed one ground up and never will. A long time back I checked the NEC and never found a requirement for up or down. To me up looks wrong no matter what any code may say.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

  9. #9
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    Dec 2002
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    Saw a commercial last week and they showed an outlet in the top surface of a counter top. that is a code violation. You can still put outlets in a floor, but need a cap to seal when not in use.

    Only seen a few that were on bottom of surface, like garage door opener or under a baywindow outside (weird place for one, but out of weather)

    never heard of an orientation requirement, even on a range or dryer outlet. Problem there is there is no standard for where the bumpout space on the back of a range is located, so a range may not push against wall when you replace it w new.
    Col 3:23


    questions asked, answers received, ignorance abated

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by billygoat22 View Post
    Saw a commercial last week and they showed an outlet in the top surface of a counter top. that is a code violation.
    That is correct.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  11. #11
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    Put the question to Mike Holt. On this forum, I look to Timebuilder for answers to these types of questions. And whatever he says, I do not question. Above Timebuilder, is Mike Holt. That's where the answers are.
    If you were a real tech, you'd solder a relay on that board and call it good to go.

    I do a triple evac with nitro to remove non condensables.

    I use 56% silver on everything except steel.

    Did you really need the " If you were a real tech " ??

  12. #12
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    Sep 2002
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    Thread Starter
    Behind electric stoves I install a 'fire block' between the wall studs at 13" up from the floor and leave the space below the block open. Then I mount the stove receptacle to the side of the wall stud which is closest to the center of the stove-space.

    That way any stove will fit flush to the wall behind it.

    PHM
    ---------


    Quote Originally Posted by billygoat22 View Post
    . . . . there is no standard for where the bumpout space on the back of a range is located, so a range may not push against wall when you replace it w new.
    PHM
    --------
    The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking.

  13. #13
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    Sep 2002
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    I cannot stand to see them ground up

    Some cords have to loop up and hang over backwards when they put them like that

  14. Likes UmmScott liked this post
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