Whirlpool circuit breaker problem


Old 02-19-05, 06:53 PM
Sam R
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Whirlpool circuit breaker problem

My whirlpool tub is plugged into its own circuit which is wired into the basement panel on a GFI. Whenever I try to energize the pump, I blow the circuit and trip the GFI in the basement. When I ran a short extension cord and plugged it into the vanity outlet as a test, it worked fine. We haven't used it because we're nervous since there's no GFI protection if we operate it in this manner. What's happening to trip the GFI and how do we fix it? Also, is it safe to use on the vanity outlet? Thank you.
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Old 02-19-05, 07:43 PM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,150
There are a couple of courses of action; Remove the breaker and have it tested. (Most "electrical supply houses" either offer the service or can refer you). The "tub" should be the only device connected, however, if thatís not the case, it may be overloaded and you need to "unload" it, or you then can change the breaker to a standard breaker and install GFCI receptacles at remote locations, including the tub.

Only use an extension cord if it is a MINIMUM of 12ga. wire, shorter than 25' and ABSOLUTELY connected to a GFCI protected receptacle.
Old 02-20-05, 06:50 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Have you tried temporarily plugging this into a GFCI receptacle? Your bathroom vanity should be on a GFCI circuit, but it may not be if it is older.

If everything works fine using a known good GFCI receptacle, then I would suspect either the GFCI breaker or the wiring.

Another test you can make would be to use the GFCI breaker for a regular circuit. Temporarily swap the wires (you will need to do this carefully, and remember to swap the neutrals as well). If you have problems on the "new" circuit on the breaker then that is another reason to suspect the breaker.

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