GFI for a fuse box...


We have a 1969 Fuse box, using 12 gauge copper wire, 100 amp service.
Long story short We were told by our home insurance and home inspection people that in Ontario (Canada), there are no concerns with inspected copper wired fuse boxes until they reach 50 years. So we are not rushing to replace this box. However I wanted to install GFI receptacles for outside, kitchen, and two bathrooms. There are none in place now. We also have a 240 volt outside outlet to run a pool motor.
Can GFI work on fuse boxes/panels? if so, does that GFI outlet, when tripped, mean replacing the fuse? Do all the GFI's have to be on the same circuit?
Anyone have any advice on this matter?
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Yes, but they obviously can't be the type that combine a circuit breaker and GFCI into one in the panel. The seperate type, eg a GFCI outlet, which can also protect any other loads downstream, is fine.

No, just the GFCI needs to be reset.
Do all the GFI's have to be on the same

No, you can have as many independent ones as you need.

The only thing I haven't seen is a 240V outlet that includes GFCI protection, but seem like they should exist.
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On Sun, 14 Mar 2010 08:50:02 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

There are basically 2 ways to accomplish this. Both involve a breaker in a separate box. You could mount a box next to your current fuse panel with the GFCI in it or , better, just put a disconnect box next to the pool pump with a GFCI breaker in it.
I know of no 240v GFCI receptacle combinations like the ones you have for 15 and 20a 120v circuits.
Trader is right that this is the preferred method of providing GFCI protection on 120v circuits. Not only does it get the GFCI device close to the load (easier to find and reset if it trips) it is also cheaper than a breaker. This is a fairly easy retrofit too since all you have to do is replace the first receptacle in the circuit you want to protect and feed the down stream receptacles from the LOAD terminals of the GFCI device.
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On Sun, 14 Mar 2010 13:26:04 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I don't know how this helps you, but those are the exact places I have that are on a single GFI circuit breaker (because of the water, of course). It was planned this way, so I believe they are the only things on that breaker.
In your case the bathrooms I suppose might be on the same fuse as the room next to them. You can make a pretty good map/list/diagram if you try.
gf's suggestion of a separate breaker box next to the fuse box would work well for these too if the four receptacles you want to protect are either on the same circuit, or on different circuits that don't total more than a GFI breaker is designed to protect. I learned here that you don't want a GFI breaker for a refrigerator or freezer circuit, because it it trips you may ruin all that food. So if the kitchen receptacle is on the same circuit as the fridge, that wouldn't work.
I've only had the outside outlet trip, and I never could figure out why. The house was only 5 years old when this started. Eventually I just replaced the breaker and that solved the problem. The new breaker has worked for 25 years. I'm sure receptacles last a long time too, and they are cheaper than breakers but you need more than one, as many as four. OTOH, it's a one-time expense on a safety issue.
More below.

People always say this, but it assumes either the person knows which the first receptacle in the circuit is, or that he can figure it out without TOO much effort and won't get confused doing so.
I have no idea which is the first receptacle anywhere on my second floor, or on the first floor above the finished ceiling half of the basement, or in the finished part of the basement. Or anywhere else for that matter but where I can see the wiring I could figure it out.
To figure it out, aiui, I would have to guess which one, take off the cover remove the receptacle, remove two of the likely 4 wires, and then check which other receptacles are now dead. If I found one that wasn't dead in the same room, I would have to do to that one what I just did to the other one. If the same circuit fed more than one room, or might, or a room was split into more than one circuit, it would be even either more tedious or more complicated.
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I don't see it being all that tedious or complicated, especially considering you only have to do it once. I'd start with the first outlet that you'd want to put a GFCI in that is closest to the fuse panel. Usually wiring is going to be run to use the least possible wire, so if outlets are daisy chained, it's more likely the start is going to be closer to the fuse panel. Once you disconnect the downstream at that outlet, you just have to go around checking to see which of the other outlets that you want GFCI protected are off.
Then proceed to the next outlet that you want to protect that did not go off in the above process.
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The most expensive thing to do would be to use GFCI circuit breakers, assuming you did want to replace the fuse panel. Just install GFCI type outlets at the areas you want to protect, and do as the others recommend for the 240 volt pool outlet.

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Let me make sure I got this right. If not somebody tell me.
So I can use a GFCI OUTLET and that will give me protection without having anything to do with the fuse box? It'll trip at the outlet only but offers protection. I have fuses, not circuit breakers. I don't want fuses blowing if the outlet trips.
If I can get protection at the outlet only, on a fuse system, that will be a safe and sufficient solution? We will replace the fuse box for a circuit breaker 5 years from now. Until then I want to avoid having to do ANY work on the fuse box
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You have it correct. Wherever you want GFCI protection, just install GFCI type receptacles. It doesn't matter if the panel is fuse or circuit breaker, the protection is built into the receptacle.

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wrote:

Yes, that's all you need do. If you want to make sure, buy one and replace one, and then push the Test button and see if you blow a fuse.
Last time I had fuses, I lived in an apartment and the owner made sure they were slow-blo fuses, so he woudn't be bothered to replace the ones in the basement all the time But I'm 99 percent sure all fuses are slower to blow than GFI's are to trip. For one thing, there isn't necessarily, usually isn't iiuc, almost never is maybe, any short when a GFI trips. It trips because the ground wire is not good, not connected or something. That's not a short.
As to the word only that you use. There is normally a string of receptacles or ceiling lights or on some occasions a combination of the two with the fuse or cb at one end of the string. The GFI receptacle will, when wired the right way, not only protect itself, but each of the receptacles that are further away, electrically, from the fuse than the GFI is. Because if there isn't a good ground to the GFI, then there isn't a good ground to any of the receptacles that are further away either. Well that's garbled probably, but smething like that.

Why?
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Yes, and you can get a "three light tester" with a GFCI tester built in for $10 or so, at your local HomeDespot. Plug it into any outlet, push the button and see if that outlet is protected.

A GFCI tripping won't blow the *fastest* fuse. It doesn't have anything to do with the current in the line, rather the current imbalance between the hot and the neutral. If the current in the hot isn't the same as the current in the neutral there is a Ground Fault and the Circuit is Interrupted. ;-)

THe GFCI measures the difference in the current in the Hot and Neutral wire. The imbalance can occur anywhere after the measuring device and the switch will trip. GFCIs even work in ungrounded circuits. Indeed, they're *highly* recommended in places where there are no grounds.

Because it's a good idea but not an emergency repair.
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Right. The GFCI outlet trips and you reset it at the outlet. The fuse doesn't know anything happened.

Yes, it works quite well. Only one GFCI outlet is needed in the circuit and it can be wired to protect all outlets *past* that outlet on the circuit (or not - your choice).
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Pretty much what I was going to write. GFCI breakers are much more expensive than GFCI sockets.
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