I wish to replace an old non-GFCI receptacle with the new GFCI receptacle in a switch controlled outlet in my bedroom. The photo shows the bare ground wire connected to the ground screw, the two white neutral wires "backstabbed" into the neutral wire slots, and with the two black hot wires pigtailed together. Also there is a red wire which only occurs on a switch controlled outlet, which is backstabbed into one of the hot wire slots. So which wire goes where on the GFCI? The Leviton instructions that came with the new GFCI receptacle declare that if there are more than two wires inside each of the two Romex cables (four total, excluding the ground wires), to consult an electrician instead.Old outlet

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    – Tester101
    Jan 13, 2017 at 12:28

1 Answer 1


If the box is being fed by a three wire cable (black, red, white, ground), and a two wire cable is going from the box to other outlets. Here's what you have to do...

  1. Leave the black wires alone.
  2. Connect the white wires together with a short bit of scrap wire, in a twist-on wire connector.
  3. Connect the other end of the short bit of scrap wire (pigtail) to the neutral LINE terminal on the GFCI.
  4. Connect the red wire to the hot LINE terminal on the GFCI.
  5. Connect all the ground wires and create a pigtail to the GFCI and the box if it's metal.


  • This will not provide GFCI protection to any down stream devices (since there are none).
  • Make sure the GFCI you have, does not require you to reset it whenever it loses power (some do, and that will be a pain in the butt).
  • @ Tester101 [Electricity is not my "thing" (except quoting NEC)], wouldn't adding an adjacent outlet that is GFCI protected; up-current of the light switch (but, perhaps, from within the light switch box) allow the GFCI to always be hot while retaining a use for the wall switch and avoid having to reset the GFCI all the time? Jan 10, 2017 at 14:26
  • @JamesOlson If you put the GFCI protection before the switch, then feeding the switch from the LOAD side of the GFCI would provide GFCI protection to the switch controlled receptacle.
    – Tester101
    Jan 10, 2017 at 14:28
  • @ Testor101, Is there a downside to having the OP do it that way? Jan 10, 2017 at 14:37
  • I don't need a reply. Just wondering if OP had a more convenient solution that wasn't considered before asking question. Jan 10, 2017 at 14:43
  • Tester101...I have more photos to show you. But can we correspond by email (I just put in a request with stack exchange to have responses to my questions sent via email)? I can't figure out how to upload any more photos. I'm using an iPhone. Perhaps you thought I was using a PC. I'm using my iMac PC right now hooked up to my iPhone via my "personal hotspot". But I still can't figure out how to upload my photos. I only really know how to send photos via email. Thanx.
    – user62948
    Jan 16, 2017 at 22:40

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