Unused Tripping GFCI Outlet


Old 11-12-01, 05:52 PM
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I have a single, non-used, GFCI outlet that keeps tripping. It started when I noticed and responded to a "buzzing " sound, which turned out to be the outlet in a half-tripped position. I pushed the test button and the buzzing stopped, however when I reset the outlet it just tripped again, a fem moments later. After resetting the outlet it seem to repeat the problem, however it does not trip right away it takes a little while but ultimately it keeps self-tripping. I have also noticed that the test button does not seem to be working anymore. I check the voltage and all seems normal, it was at 120 volts. Any ideas on what maybe happening? Do these types of outlet just break?
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Old 11-13-01, 02:33 AM
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I would certainly spring for the $7 it'll cost to replace it. It may not be the problem, but it very well may.

Of course, I can't help thinking that if this is an unused outlet, why even bother repairing it.
Old 11-13-01, 06:59 AM
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What you discribe is very similar to the experience found when the line and load is reversed feeding this GFI. Also even if this receptacle is empty it may be monitoring downstream loads. I would open the receptacle box and disconnect any wires from the load side screws and test to see if the experience is still the same. If you lose power to the GFI receptacle by disconnecting the wires from the load side screws then I suspect you have reversed line and load on this GFI.

Let us know what you find.

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