GFCI Logic

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Old 08-01-17, 09:59 AM
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GFCI Logic

Sorry if this is common knowledge - I'm not that knowledgeable about electric, and I can't find simple answers to my particular questions anywhere.

OK, so I know that in a kitchen, for example, all the countertop outlets need GFCI protection. And I know that if they are all on the same circuit, you only need one actual GFCI outlet (with the test/reset buttons), the others tied in on the load side of that first one will be protected (i.e., if that first outlet is tripped, power is cut to those downstream outlets). This means that if an appliance plugged into one of those tied-in outlets has some sort of water event, that particular outlet will trip off and protect the person from shock, correct? (I assume yes, otherwise it doesn't make any sense...) Does the protection work "backwards"? (i.e., will power be cut to all the outlets on that circuit back to the first GFCI outlet?)
 
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Old 08-01-17, 10:05 AM
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Anything on load side of gfci will quit working until reset.
 
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Old 08-01-17, 10:41 AM
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OK, got it. Thanks.

Follow-up question: A GFCI receptacle in one of our upstairs bathrooms protects the outlets in another bathroom, but the outlets in that bathroom are standard outlets, so it appears as if there is no GFCI in that bathroom. Would it make sense to change at least one of those outlets to a GFCI, so that it's clearly obvious?
 
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Old 08-01-17, 11:19 AM
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No. Do not put multiple GFCI protecting devices on the same circuit as they can interfere with each other.
 
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Old 08-01-17, 11:29 AM
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The GFCIs come with labels that are supposed to be applied to the receptacles downstream from the load side of GFCI.
Does the protection work "backwards"?
A ground fault in any receptacle on the load side will trip the GFCI.

You could use individual GFCIs by connecting to the line side but that gets very expensive very quickly. For the cost of one GFCI receptacle you can buy 10-15 non GFCI receptacles.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 08-01-17 at 02:54 PM.
  #6  
Old 08-01-17, 12:49 PM
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Ah-hah, the stickers, ok. I can't see putting those on the downstream outlets though - too ugly. I guess I'll just make sure the GFCIs are protecting the downstreams properly and then remember to remember that.

This has made me think of another question. I can test if the downstream outlets are protected by hitting the GFCI test button and then using a tester on them. But is there a way to test the other direction? How can I be certain that an incident at one of the downstream outlets will trip the GFCI? I guess I could plug in a lamp and then drop it into a bucket of water, but that seems like a poor choice.
 
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Old 08-01-17, 01:10 PM
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You can get a little plug in GFCI tester for about $10.
 
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Old 08-01-17, 09:36 PM
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OK, I've ordered a Sperry tester. Thanks for all the help everybody.
 
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Old 08-03-17, 12:37 PM
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The other option is to hit the test button on the 'main' GFI receptacle, and if the downstream outlets go out, they are protected as well.

Granted, the cute little testers work just fine too if that's how you want to do it.
 
 

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