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  1. #1
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    Apr 2008
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    McKinney Texas
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    Default Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    There's an old saying:

    ........" A man with a watch knows what time it is.....A man with two watches is not quite sure"......

    Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. Three GFCI testers on a known good floor mounted circuit. I made this video today.


    <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJ5SAAsAQTg">



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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    25,439

    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    Gene,

    I would change the title/heading from 'GFCI testers' (because you are not testing the GFCI function) to 'cheap 3-light circuit testers' (because that what you are testing - 'cheap' '3-light circuit testers'.

    What were your results when you followed those with a SureTest?

    Those things are worth what they cost ... when used as night lights (and they are actually kind of expensive for night lights, guess the cost is for 'the industrial design look'?).

    We've beat those cheap 3-light testers to death before ... ... use a SureTest, with the voltage reading, that gives a good and reliable (and relatively quick) test.

    While the SureTest can do things the tester in the photo below cannot do, the tester in the photo does something that even a SureTest cannot do - checks voltage H-N, H-G, N-G all at the same time.
    (top meter read between top H-N slots, lower left meter reads between N-G, right meter reads between H-G)
    (as receptacle is normally installed with ground down)

    First photos shows correct polarity (voltage H-N and H-G), second photo shows reverse polarity (voltage H-N and N-G).

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    Last edited by Jerry Peck; 10-17-2016 at 07:57 PM. Reason: added last sentence showing polarity - then corrected last line
    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    McKinney Texas
    Posts
    470

    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    Hi Jerry, yes I agree completely.

    I suspect the majority of inspectors are using the type of circuit testers shown in the video. Probably nearly all of the inspectors are.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Gene,

    I would change the title/heading from 'GFCI testers' (because you are not testing the GFCI function) to 'cheap 3-light circuit testers' (because that what you are testing - 'cheap' '3-light circuit testers'.

    What were your results when you followed those with a SureTest?

    Those things are worth what they cost ... when used as night lights (and they are actually kind of expensive for night lights, guess the cost is for 'the industrial design look'?).

    We've beat those cheap 3-light testers to death before ... ... use a SureTest, with the voltage reading, that gives a good and reliable (and relatively quick) test.

    While the SureTest can do things the tester in the photo below cannot do, the tester in the photo does something that even a SureTest cannot do - checks voltage H-N, H-G, N-G all at the same time.
    (top meter read between top H-N slots, lower left meter reads between N-G, right meter reads between H-G)
    (as receptacle is normally installed with ground down)

    First photos shows correct polarity (voltage H-N and H-G), second photo shows reverse polarity (voltage H-N and N-G).
    - - - Updated - - -

    Hi Jerry, yes I agree completely.

    I suspect the majority of inspectors are using the type of circuit testers shown in the video. Probably nearly all of the inspectors are.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Gene,

    I would change the title/heading from 'GFCI testers' (because you are not testing the GFCI function) to 'cheap 3-light circuit testers' (because that what you are testing - 'cheap' '3-light circuit testers'.

    What were your results when you followed those with a SureTest?

    Those things are worth what they cost ... when used as night lights (and they are actually kind of expensive for night lights, guess the cost is for 'the industrial design look'?).

    We've beat those cheap 3-light testers to death before ... ... use a SureTest, with the voltage reading, that gives a good and reliable (and relatively quick) test.

    While the SureTest can do things the tester in the photo below cannot do, the tester in the photo does something that even a SureTest cannot do - checks voltage H-N, H-G, N-G all at the same time.
    (top meter read between top H-N slots, lower left meter reads between N-G, right meter reads between H-G)
    (as receptacle is normally installed with ground down)

    First photos shows correct polarity (voltage H-N and H-G), second photo shows reverse polarity (voltage H-N and N-G).



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,348

    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    Did you actually confirm what was going on at that outlet? A wiggy would give you a very quick answer.
    I suspect that two of the testers are defective, and give erroneous readings at every outlet.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    Another thought, I have had outlets you can "wiggle" the tester and change the readings??? Any chance that outlet is loose internally or has loose connections and you were "wiggling" it while changing testers?? I know those things aren't a positive result but I would be sure to rule out any other options first. Just a thought.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Hartshorn View Post
    Another thought, I have had outlets you can "wiggle" the tester and change the readings??? Any chance that outlet is loose internally or has loose connections and you were "wiggling" it while changing testers?? I know those things aren't a positive result but I would be sure to rule out any other options first. Just a thought.
    Are the readings changing because the outlet is wiggling ... or because the tester is wiggling?

    Could be poor connections in the tester.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Caledon, Ontario
    Posts
    4,830

    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    Patrick

    I find I get the same results as you, but I think it is attributable to outlets that are used often. At least in my experience.

    The value of experience is not in seeing much, but in seeing wisely.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Just so you donít get too confident in your equipment. See video

    In 12 years of inspections (I have no idea how many that is but its a bunch) I have never had an outlet test incorrect that wasn't confirmed by repairs as being incorrect. Even the "wiggly" outlets that change the tester to date have all been found incorrect. That doesn't mean I haven't had outlets that tested correctly that may have been bad and the tester didn't pick them up, always possible and I don't 100% trust those inexpensive testers either, I use a much more expensive one that by theory shouldn't have mis-readings. If I find any movement in an outlet I call it out, was trained to do that since moving outlets can wear on components such as copper wiring, they are designed to be solid mounted and therefore should be as such.


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