Refrigerator tripping GFI

Reply

  #1  
Old 04-01-15, 09:22 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 5
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Refrigerator tripping GFI

Hi guys so I have read a bunch of posts about the debated topic of a fridge on a gfci and here is my question. I have a fridge that randomly (different times in cycle ) trips gfci. I have tried it in other gfci same problem, sometimes trips in 20 minutes sometimes 8 hours sometimes a few weeks. This is a dedicated line to the fridge. I have ohm checked compressor windings and they passed I have ohm checked defrost heater defrost thermostat and they passed I have check function of the defrost timer and it passes , the compressor fan spins freely and is clean. All grounds good all connections solid at this point I'm starting to go down the route of not using a gfci . It's in kitchen and not a countertop service I just wanted to be sure there wasn't a safety issue causing the trip. Please give me some thoughts
 

Last edited by Bigredram87; 04-01-15 at 09:23 PM. Reason: Autocorrect
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 04-01-15, 10:24 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 59,061
Received 1,109 Votes on 1,029 Posts
Welcome to the forums.

Code now dictates GFI protection on refrigerators. I disagree and do not use GFI protection on any of my refrigerators.

Whether or not you were able to locate a ground fault it still exists. You said you ohm checked everything out.

What did you have the ohmmeter set to ?
You need to set the meter to a high ohms setting Rx100k if analog and auto on digital. You need to disconnect each item you are checking and check from white to ground and black to ground.

You could have a leak in the defrost element that didn't show up until it was in heating mode.
 
  #3  
Old 04-01-15, 11:04 PM
F
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wet side of Washington state.
Posts: 18,495
Received 35 Votes on 27 Posts
How old is this refrigerator? I have to agree with PJ that you do indeed have a ground fault, albeit an intermittent one. For what it is worth, I have never had a refrigerator trip my ground fault circuit breaker yet the portable tester will trip it every time.
 
  #4  
Old 04-02-15, 03:32 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 5
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks

The fridge is maybe 8 years old. I am very curious with the water in the heater element tube. Also thanks so much for suggestions i was working on this thing for so long I apparently wasn't thinking clearly. I was ohming out the devices end to end to confirm they were good, I was however not ohming them out from the end to the ground which would locate the fault. Tonight when I get home I will check the defroster heater, windings to ground, fan to ground, and get back to you. The only thing that seems unusual to me is when it trips I can reset gfi and it will work properly again (for undetermined amount of time) I feel like it would be easier if it continued to trip after the initial trip I would suspect a wire or something drooping and touching chassis when heated up.. but again it instantly resets
 
  #5  
Old 04-02-15, 08:22 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 59,061
Received 1,109 Votes on 1,029 Posts
I think when you measure from white to ground or black to ground you'll find a very high resistance. That resistance may keep the current just low enough below what is required to trip the GFI.

What will you be using...analog or digital ?
 
  #6  
Old 04-02-15, 09:29 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 5
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Fluke

I will be using a fluke digital meter. Your suggesting I just take a measurement from the main line white to ground and black to ground to et an overall total resistance in the entire fridge?
 
  #7  
Old 04-02-15, 09:37 AM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 5
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Using a digital meter I am just reading an open circuit
 
  #8  
Old 04-02-15, 01:36 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 5
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Freezer fan

Ok so during my troubleshooting I think I noticed a problem. Coming out of the defrost cycle I noticed the freezer can try to kick on it did a weird pulse on off struggling and after a few seconds of the pulsing it kicked on and stayed on. Now there was no gfi kick this time but I believe this May be the culprit. I am going to take the timer out later and check for clean switching at the defrost to start position. I may try putting a voltmeter on the fan and see if it is getting a clean stable voltage and force the timer. Do these fans have starting caps built in? Any suggestions on testing them with a. Multimeter thank you
 
  #9  
Old 04-03-15, 12:25 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 59,061
Received 1,109 Votes on 1,029 Posts
No..... neither fans uses a capacitor. What's the problem with the fan.
The fan comes on with the compressor. If the compressor isn't restarting properly then the fan may not be restarting properly either if there is problem with the defrost timer.

When I mentioned checking from white to ground and black to ground...... that was on the main line as well as the defrost heater.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: