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Question DetailsAsked on 8/14/2012

I'm changing my electrical outlet and there's gray and lavander wires. Which one is the hot wires.

What is the gray electrical wires means and what the lavander wires means. I'm changing the elctrical outlet in my kitchen island with a 15 amp.

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2 Answers


Gray should be neutral. White is the standard color for neutral these days.
Lavander is hot.
Be careful. You may want to talk to somebody who knows how to use a volt meter.

Answered 8 years ago by Kestrel Electric


This must be a very old house - gray is usually instrumentation communication color now and lavender is power for a controller. These may have been red (hot) and white (neutral) at one time and changed color with age or heating.

My recommendation if you are doing this yourself - get a tool you should have anyway - a plug-in circuit tester - has LED lights on the front that come on in different colors or pattersn to tell you which wires are connected wrong, or if all all right - about $10 for a decent brand, looks something like this -

Of course,if you are really electrical handy and don't mind holding probes into outlewts, then a volt ohm meter works just as well.

I would test the current outlet with the tester to see what it says, then hook the new one up with wiring swaps as appropriate if it says the live and neutral were switched, for instance, then retest after hookup. This device is a good way to check for swapped or unconnected or miswired outlets on a one-time basis house-wide, then test for defects in outlets from then on.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD

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