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Kevin
Kevin, Licensed Electrical Contractor
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 3594
Experience:  30 years Licensed Electrical Contractor in Illinois, Adjunct College Electrical Instructor, Former Electrical Inspector, Diploma: Digital Electronics, FCC Technician License
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We are replacing an outlet and have 4 black and 4 wires plus

Customer Question

We are replacing an outlet and have 4 black and 4 white wires plus a ground. I was reading and the suggested a pigtail to create one wire going into the new outlet
JA: I'll do all I can to help. How long have you been dealing with this?
Customer: Just today
JA: Do you plan on doing the work yourself?
Customer: Yes
JA: Anything else we should know to help you best?
Customer: Nope
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

Hello and welcome to Just Answer. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist you with your electrical question.

1) Yes a pigtail will be required.

2) Refer to the diagrams shown below for pigtail examples:

Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

1) If the circuit breaker is a 15 amp, the pigtail wire size needs to be 14 AWG copper.

2) If the circuit breaker is a 20 amp, the pigtail wire size needs to be 12 AWG copper.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
When we did this it killed the two outlets on each side of the outlet we replaced. But the outlet we replaced works
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

Thanks for the replies.

1) Was the original wall receptacle split wired where 1/2 was always live and the other 1/2 was controlled by a wall switch?

2) Was the middle tab located in between the 2 brass screws on the original receptacle removed?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Here is what the original looked like
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
The last pick is what we have done now
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I don't remember using the wall switch but let me turn on all the switches
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

Thanks for the pics.

1) I recommend to replace the receptacle with the standard type that has side screws. Back-stab wired receptacles are prone for the wires to easily come loose. Always terminate wires to the side screws of a device and never to a back-stab hole.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
We are using the side screws. Here is a picture of the outlet that does not work
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Here you go
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

1) If the receptacles do not work, then you will need either a 2 wire lead AC voltage tester (a contact type) or a multimeter to confirm the voltages. Somewhere on the circuit you either have an open neutral or an open hot wire.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
The first outlet we replaced had 4 white and 4 black wires. The second outlet only had 1 white and 1 black
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

1) One black/white set is the circuit feed. The 2nd set of black/white is extending to a downstream device.

2) Get a meter to confirm voltages at the 2 black and 2 white neutrals.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thanks for the help. We got it to work
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.

No problem, glad to assist.

Good job.

Hope this helps………If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks.................Kevin:)