GFI wired incorrectly?


Old 09-26-07, 11:34 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2
GFI wired incorrectly?

When I finished my basement I did all of the electrical work myself. I put a GFI in the bathroom, and it seemed to work fine. If I hit the "test" button, the power to it (and the lights and fan) goes out. We're trying to sell our house and the city inspector said that it is wired improperly and needs to be fixed. Does anyone have any idea what makes him think it is wrong, and what I would need to do to fix it?

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Old 09-26-07, 11:43 PM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: NE Wis / Paris France{ In France for now }
Posts: 4,808
Do this basement bathroom have shower ?

if not, then what you have to do is check the connections behind the GFCI you should able to see the " LINE " and " LOAD " behind the GFCI repectale and which way the wire came in to the GFCI first then light switch ?? or the other way around ??

becasue with this info we in this forum we can help you to steer in the right direction there and is the GFCI together with the switch box ?

Merci, Marc
Old 09-27-07, 12:40 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2
There is no shower in that bathroom. Only a sink and a toilet.

Okay.. however..

When I looked at the wiring, it looks like the LINE comes in from old house wiring. The load goes out to the junction box behind the light, and from there over to the switch box. However I have that wired, I have two switches, one for the light and one for the fan.

Hope that helps, and thanks for the assistance.

Old 09-27-07, 12:51 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: NA
Posts: 1,065
Not sure what your saying....the gfci has line terminals and load terminals.

Do you have the incoming power to the line terminals and the cable to the light and fans on the load terminals? Or the other way around..... like marc asked....

You have a ground from the old wiring connected to gfci ? You would also have ground in the new wirng...both old an new are connected together and to the gfci? If they are present this is required

Black to brass screws and white to silver screws?

Usually what they find is you have incoming power to load and outgoing cable to line side terminals.
Old 09-27-07, 05:22 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
What inspector?

Unless there is a local code prohibiting the GFCI from disconnecting power to the lights, then you have no violation cased on the information you have provided.

However, you can easily change things so that the fan and light are NOT protected by the GFCI, simply by making all connections to the GFCI on the LINE terminals.

If however, you have the bathroom on the same circuit as other parts of the basement, then you do have a code violation based on today's code, and probably based on the code when you finished the basement.
Old 09-27-07, 10:48 AM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
"Wired improperly" is insufficient information to go on. There's probably a hundred things he could have meant. You need to get more detail. Otherwise, you're just guessing as to what he meant.

You could just tighten the faceplate screw and tell the buyer that it is now fixed. If he asks what you fixed, tell the truth. When he tells you that he needs more, ask what more he needs.
Old 09-27-07, 10:49 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: NA
Posts: 1,065
In newer gfci's (after 2003) with "smart technology" the possibility of wiring them wrong has been practically eliminated or the gfci won't reset.
A homes inspector would normally just test the gfci, Did his tester show a problem like open ground or line reversal or something? The bathroom doesn't sound like a bathroom that would need down stream protection to another receptacle located in that bathroom. I think you said there is only one. If however there is another standard receptacle in the bath he could be saying that when he tests that receptacle the gfci is not tripping as it should if wired for down stream protection.
I would lean towards an indication by the inspectors tester that you have an open ground or reversal of hot and neutral. If the receptacle works when reset and is wired wrong. Then it is either line to load connected or hot/neutral reversed or open ground (old technology) .

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