GFCI question

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  #1  
Old 12-09-06, 05:11 PM
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GFCI question

The water feature I plan to install next summer needs to be gfci protected. The power for the 4amp pump I want to use will come from my garage. The circuit is a 20A that comes from the house which is about 75ft from the garage. My outlets in the garage are currently not gfci protected. They make a gfci breaker that would replace the current breaker. I thought if I replaced the breaker I could kill 2 birds and protect my garage as well as the pump. I've been told a point of use gfci outlet at the waterfall would be a better choice. What do you guys think? Would you get a faster reaction time with the point of use in case of a problem or wouldn't it matter.

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  #2  
Old 12-16-06, 04:53 PM
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Here's my little pro's and con's think:

Installing a GFCI outlet at the water fountain would be the cheapest option but it would only protect your fountain. It might have fewer mysterious trips since it is protecting very little.

The GFCI breaker will be more expensive but you get the benefit of protecting everything downstream, garage included (but you already knew that). The GFCI may trip more often but I think it will only do so because it is protecting so much more. If your garage has old/poor wiring or if you like to use old tools with nicknames like "sparkey" and "shocks" the breaker may trip more often than you like.

Electricity is speed of light so the extra wiring length will not have a real effect in reaction time.

I would install the the breaker so you can get protection in your garage.

----

When building my house I had a GFCI breaker on the saw pole 300 feet from the house. It worked fine until I hit the wire to the house with the lawnmower. Even though I electrical taped the wire where I cut it, the GFCI would trip whenever it rained. I ended up puting a regular breaker on the saw pole and put an outlet GFCI on the house end. The moral of the story: the breaker GFCI will work, but it is not tolerant of poor wiring.
 
  #3  
Old 12-19-06, 03:08 PM
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I think I'll try the breaker route as my garage wiring is in good shape and I really don't use high amp power tools out there much. Thanks for the reply
 
  #4  
Old 12-19-06, 04:10 PM
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I run all sorts of high amp. tools (Mig & Tig welders, drills, large grinders, belt sanders...) and have not had any problems with the GFCI so I don't think the current draw has much to do with it as long as you are not overloading the circuit.
 
  #5  
Old 02-14-07, 11:12 AM
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Amperage has nothing to do with a GFCI tripping. it is the imbalance between the juice going in and that coming out that will trip it.

Beware on GFCI breakers the neutral wire needs to be just one loop for the entire circuit.
 
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