GFCI question

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Old 03-03-03, 08:49 AM
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GFCI question

Recently my in-laws had their bathroom remodeled. Part of the process involved the addition of an outlet where there previously had not been one. It is a GFCI outlet. Pushing the test button results in the bathroom light and exhaust fan (which have seprate switches) going off. Presumably, they are connected to the load side of the GFCI, so this would be normal. What's strange is that the outlets on the GFCI itself remain energized after tripping the test button. What could be causing this?
 
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Old 03-03-03, 09:21 AM
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Sounds like it is either a bad GFCI, or it is wired incorrectly. I tend to think it is wired incorrectly. They are just starting to come out with a new generation of GFCI receptacles that won't work unless they are wired correctly, eliminating the problem you are experiencing. You might want to replace your existing unit with one of the new ones.
 
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Old 03-03-03, 09:34 AM
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Well, I had figured it was one or the other. Question: assuming the outlet box has (excluding the ground wire(s)) two hots and two neutrals (one line and one load each) and assuming the incoming wiring is not NM but rather single conductors, how can I determine which neutral should go on the load side and which should go on the line side of the GFCI?
 
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Old 03-03-03, 11:41 AM
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This is what happens when you reverse the "line" and "load" connections on the GFCI. You need to interchange the wiring.

The directions that usually come with a GFCI receptacle (that page of tiny print) tells you how to identify which goes to "line" and which goes to "load". Perhaps the one you bought did not contain these instructions.
 
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Old 03-03-03, 11:49 AM
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Thanks; that's what I suspected. BTW, this was put in by an electrician, not by me. But I still need to know, assuming there are single conductors rather than NM in the box, how I can tell which neutral goes to line and which goes to load?
 
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Old 03-03-03, 11:55 AM
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I've thought about this -- with nothing hooked to the wires, I should get continuity between line side neutral and a known good ground, and no continuity between load side neutral and the ground, right?
 
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Old 03-03-03, 03:17 PM
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Originally posted by eclipse
I've thought about this -- with nothing hooked to the wires, I should get continuity between line side neutral and a known good ground, and no continuity between load side neutral and the ground, right?
That is only true if you remove all loads from the circuit on the load side of the box. otherwise you will see ground through the loads unless the ungrounded current carrying conductors are also disconnected. If both the ungrounded and grounded current carrying conductors are open that test should work in the absence of any ground fault on either side of the load portion of the circuit.
--
Tom
 
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Old 03-03-03, 03:46 PM
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eclipse-
After I moved into a new house in 1994, I beganning filling the master bath jacuzzi with water and couldn't find a switch to turn it on! I finally poked the test button on the GFCI outlet on the opposite wall. The jets came on. It was a first for me.
 
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