Go Back  DoItYourself.com Community Forums > Electrical, AC & DC. Electronic Equipment and Computers > Electrical - AC & DC
Reload this Page >

Outlet next to utility sink for security system -- GFCI or not?

Outlet next to utility sink for security system -- GFCI or not?


  #1  
Old 03-18-15, 02:04 PM
B
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Loudoun County, VA
Posts: 194
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Outlet next to utility sink for security system -- GFCI or not?

I am getting ready to sell my house and am trying to fix any issues that might catch a home inspector's eye.

I have a regular (non-GFCI) outlet next to a utility sink, mounted a little over 5' above the floor. Plugged into this outlet is my security system and my FIOS router, in other words the outlet is never unused and never gets used for anything hand-held or on the floor that would pose a shock hazard. Still, by code, I expect that this should be a GFCI (I don't think this qualifies for GFCI exemption like a chest freezer plugged into a single outlet would)?

My plan was to replace the regular outlet with a GFCI, but then a friend of mine just sold his house and the buyer's inspector complained that his security system is plugged into a GFCI (in a basement, but not next to a sink) and shouldn't be because the system will lose power if the GFCI trips.

Am I better off with or without a GFCI in this location?
 

Last edited by bajinnova; 03-18-15 at 02:20 PM.
  #2  
Old 03-18-15, 03:19 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,575
Received 15 Votes on 13 Posts
the buyer's inspector complained that his security system is plugged into a GFCI (in a basement, but not next to a sink) and shouldn't be because the system will lose power if the GFCI trips
Housing inspectors aren't electricians or alarm technicians (or deep thinkers) as proved by that statement. By that logic it shouldn't be on a breaker either because the breaker could trip. The alarm system has battery back up in case of failure so loss of power does not disable the alarm. Code requires GFCI if within six feet of the sink or if the basement is unfinished.
 
  #3  
Old 03-18-15, 04:52 PM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 11,147
Received 163 Votes on 146 Posts
Still, by code, I expect that this should be a GFCI (I don't think this qualifies for GFCI exemption like a chest freezer plugged into a single outlet would)?
There are no GFCI exemptions. If a chest freezer is plugged into a receptacle in a garage, an unfinished basement or into a receptacle within 6 feet of a utility sink it must be GFCI protected. A single receptacle does not nullify the requirement. The single receptacle use to be allowed on freezers and refrigerators in garages and on sump pumps, but no longer.
 
  #4  
Old 03-19-15, 03:47 AM
M
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 49,235
Received 672 Votes on 595 Posts
I think the GFI exceptions are more an enforcement thing. A nearby town has some of the strictest electrical code enforcement in the area but the inspector will allow a non GFI in the garage for a freezer provided he's informed about it before hand [he might specify where the receptacle can be placed]
 
  #5  
Old 03-19-15, 04:55 AM
Geochurchi's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 5,583
Received 154 Votes on 140 Posts
I am thinking that that is an existing condition and although it is required now there would be no need or code requirement to update it on a Home inspectors whim,have him state in writing the violation.
Geo
 
  #6  
Old 03-19-15, 07:28 AM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 15,389
Received 148 Votes on 131 Posts
Home inspectors make observations but are not code inspectors. Some even cite things that meet code.

Without looking there used to be something about alarm panels and gfi protection not being needed IIRC.
 
  #7  
Old 03-19-15, 06:16 PM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 11,147
Received 163 Votes on 146 Posts
Without looking there used to be something about alarm panels and gfi protection not being needed IIRC.
I haven't looked it up either, but I believe that if the receptacle is installed inside the alarm panel the GFCI protection can be omitted. If the receptacle is outside of the alarm panel, I believe it will be required to be GFCI protected. That being said, marksr is correct that this may be more of an enforcement thing regardless of what version of the NEC has been adopted. I am familiar with a small town that is still on the 1999 version of the NEC, but they still require AFCI protection on all new home bedroom circuits. This reminds me of what Nashkat always used to say, all codes are local.
 
 

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