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Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

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  • Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

    I have a woodshop in my garage. The door opener receptacle is a single plug one in the ceiling. I have a 12 gauge electrical cable reel I"d like to put in there too, can I change the single plug to a double one to supply both the door opener & the cord reel?
    Thanks
    Dennis

  • #2
    Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

    No reason why not. Just be sure when you turn the breaker off you identify any other devices that are on that circuit. In newer construction garage receptacles are also protected with a GFCI.

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    • #3
      Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

      Most likely the reason for the garage door recep. is a single round unit is because the electrician who installed it did so to avoid using a GFI outlet. Technically if the recep. is going to be used for other than the door opener ie as a convienence outlet like you will be converting it to, it should be GFI'ed. By code, because it was a single recep. and the opener was plugged into it, it was considered a "dedicated" outlet and did not require a GFI. If you change it to use it for other than the opener, you should make it a GFI. Some inspectors will accept a duplex un gfi'ed opener outlet because it could be considered "not readily accessible" being 8ft on the ceiling. Since you weill be using it as a conviennce outlet, it should be GFIed in a garage.

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      • #4
        Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

        Thanks for the info. Is installing a GFI any different from installing a regular receptacle?
        Dennis

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        • #5
          Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

          After turning off the circuit breaker (use a circuit tester to insure breaker is off), pull the old receptacle out of the box and remove it. If there are only two wires plus a ground coming into the box you can safely assume that is the end of the run and attach the wires to the proper terminals on the line side of the GFCI. If there are four wires plus two grounds coming into the box you will have to determine which is the line side (coming in) and which is the load side (going to the next device). Do this by separating the wires to prevent shorts and turning on the breaker so you can test to see which of the wires is hot, using your tester. Turn the breaker back off and connect the wire that was hot and its neutral to the line side of the GFCI. The other hot and neutral get connected to the load side of the GFCI. The line and load sides of the GFCI will be identified for you usually with a strip of yellow tape over the load side terminals.

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          • #6
            Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

            In the state of New Jersey even though they have adopted the 2008 NEC. Receptacles that are not readily accessible in garages and unfinished basements do not have to be GFCI protected.

            The 2005 NEC did not require the garage door opener to be GFCI protected. The 2008 version does.
            Last edited by swoosh81; 12-26-2008, 12:20 PM.

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            • #7
              Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

              there should be no need to install a gfci on a garage door opener in any room or garage that is drywalled. depending on how many amps the reel is pulling will tell you if you can do that

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              • #8
                Re: Change receptacle from 1 to 2 plugs

                get yourself a double-gang tiger box, use the existing outlet for the garage opener and get a gfci for your cordreel. take a 3" piece of #12 and jumper the hot(black) from your garage opener outlet to the gfci and take one piece of white and green(or bare) #12 and wirenut white to white and bare to bare and you should be set.

                also note that if you get confused there should be diagrams on the back of the outlet that will help show you were your black(bronze screw) white(silver) and ground(green) wires are landed and witch ones to use to run to another outlet and also de-energize the circiut before you remove the outlet.
                Last edited by elec-bw; 01-16-2009, 06:30 PM.

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