We are about to move into a house that has regular (non-GFCI) outlets in
kitchen, bathrooms, garage and on the patio.
Is it better to replace the outlets by GFCI ones or to replace the
breakers by GFCI ones (assuming that GFCI ones are available for that
particular panel -- brand unknown so far)?
Also they are supposed to be tested monthly. They are electronic and can
fail. I would bet almost no one tests the ones in the panel. Use the GFCI
outlets, but try to put them where you will see them often -- then you will
remember to test them at least once in a while. even if that means
installing extras, they are only about 8 bucks each.
Be sure that you use 20 amp GFCIs on 20 amp circuits, such as the kitchen.
Do not put refrigerators, freezers, etc on GFCIs -- they can nuisance trip.
Humbug. While the outlets are cheaper than the breakers, it
depends on how the house is wired as to what would be best.
I have just one protected breaker which serves all of the
outlets required to have such protection in my house. If
you have several circuits that need protection, then a
protected outlet (first in line) would likely be cheapest.
My protected breaker has tripped several times. There has
been no trouble shooting (when something on the line won't
turn on the obviously first thought should be that the
circuit breaker did it job). Reset is just a matter of
walking over to the panel in the garage and flipping it all
the way off then on. And yes, I test it occasionally by
pushing the red button. BTW, it is now 27 years old.
Wade Lippman wrote:
Speaking of an outlet, I use one with indicator light. When it is on,
there is tiny green LED on, when tripped, the LED is off. Very handy.
In my house some outlets, and breakers for Jacuzzi pump and kitchen
on a sub panel inside broom closet on main floor.(don't have to go down
stairs to reset when tripped)
Wade Lippman wrote:
He said that the breaker was 27 years old, so, it's not controlling any
kitchen outlets [US code] ;-)
These days, it's not possible to run all of the protection-required outlets
off one breaker. US kitchen rules imply 2 seperate breakers as a
bare _minimum_ just for counters.
Canadian rules are worse in this regard. If it required GFI on kitchen
counter outlets, this means a minimum of two two-pole GFI breakers.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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