If your house was built after 1962, you shouldn’t have to read this

That’s because houses are currently built with a ground wires that act like an emergency off ramp in case something goes wrong. If a wire got loose in your fan, it would create a “short circuit”, and instead of spinning the blades, would take the shorter path to ground. If the fan had a ground wire, the electricity would go straight to ground without passing through you first.

Remember; electricity always wants to go back to where it came from, through the ground.

Before there were ground wires to all outlets, the outlets all had only 2 slots. The trouble starts when those outlets get replaced. If the replacement outlet has three holes, a person could be unpleasantly surprised if the fan developed a short circuit, and that person touched something grounded. The person would be the path. No good.

So, what to do? Easy; Hire an electrician to install GFCI’s

Honestly, if you’re surprised by anything you’ve read so far, you’re not qualified to perform home wiring. I still love you, but don’t let ego help you start a fire. An electrician will help the fan’s loose wire problem stay manageable by taking out the outlet and installing a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. If you want to see what it looks like to have an electrician do it, click Don’t do this yourself!

It will have a little sticker on that says “No Equipment Ground”. That means that surge protectors won’t perform properly, which means that your computer and TV won’t be protected in case of a nearby lightening strike.

 

Want to learn more? (Are you kidding? Are you at work? Who PAYS you to wander all over the web, looking at every link, everywhere? Fine. Click here.)

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About the author

Joe has many years of experience as a Home Inspector. Joe is a proud member of ASHI, MAHI, WAHI & SAAR. He follows the Best Practices as described by the American Association of Home Inspectors and the Wisconsin Association of Home Inspectors. He is licensed in Wisconsin and is Radon Certified. Joe also complies with ASHI's Code of Ethics.

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