Tripping GFI / Bathroom Fan Problem


Old 10-06-08, 07:50 PM
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Tripping GFI / Bathroom Fan Problem

I recently bought a house and have run into an issue with a bathroom exhaust fan and GFI outlet on the same circuit:

The GFI outlet is tripping. When it trips, if the fan is switched off, the outlet does not function. When the fan is switched on, the fan does not work, and the outlet switches on (the test light illuminates). I cannot reset the GFI until I flip the breaker on the panel. Then I can reset the GFI and everything functions normally again (until the next time it trips).

So, my questions is, do I have a faulty GFI outlet or a short in the fan?

Thanks for your help.
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Old 10-06-08, 07:55 PM
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This is a fairly common problem. If the GFCI is perhaps 10 years old or so, you might benefit with a new GFCI. On the other hand, inexpensive bathroom fans often develop some leakage.

It is probably possible to take the fan off the GFCI protection, and unless the fan is directly above the shower or tub, it's probably a good idea to do so.

Or, you could try buying a new fan. You can usually buy a replacement motor, although you might find it easier to just buy a new fan with the same motor and take the motor out of the new fan and put it in the old one.
Old 10-06-08, 08:49 PM
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My suggest is very simuair to John Nelson expaining with the GFCI receptale and for about 10 to 15 bucks try that first before you tear the fan apart.

However while we are on the same subject here.,, related to the exhaust fan this what I suggest that you open up the fan cover and get it clean up and see any connections or anything look out of normal.

Try to unplug the fan at the motor.
Most of them do have a short cord from fan motor to the fan box receptale and just unplug them and turn on the GFCI recpetale if it don't trip then it will be fine on that part so you can able dail down to the motor current leakage.

With older GFCI's it get pretty sentive and can malfunctioned over the time and the new ones are much better and they are more durable than the old one.

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