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Polarity and Grounding of Receptacles
Electrical receptacles (or outlets) have both a hot and a neutral pole. Reverse polarity happens when the neutral wire gets connected to the incorrect side of the outlet. Reverse polarity creates a potential shock hazard. This effect is amplified in the presence of moisture and/or water. Because of this, outlets that are located near plumbing fixtures or moisture, such as those in bathrooms, kitchens, the outside of the building and garages, are required to be GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlets or breakers.
GFCI outlets initiate an instant break in the electrical current whenever they register a surge in voltage. This prevents sparks that could lead to fires or the risk of electrocution. The home inspector will make sure that GFCIs are installed where they need to be and that all are functioning properly.