help: odd wiring map and GCFI

My breaker panel has three breakers labeled "lights and outlets", presumably by the builders.
Today I went to map which switches and outlets are connected to which breaker. I stuck colored dots (blue, red, yellow) on each breaker, and then stuck corresponding colored dots on each switch and outlet. One circuit (yellow) has a GCFI, with outlets in the hall bath and master bath.
What I found is that several outlets in the kitchen and dining area are live on both the blue and yellow circuit.
Is it common to have outlets connected to two breakers? Especially with one of the common breakers GCFI-protected?
Any thoughts appreciated.
Thanks a heap -Zz
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
It's a little unclear what you mean by outlets connected to two breakers. In the U.S., the NEC requires a minimum of two 20 amp circuits for kitchen counter outlets, which also must be GFCI protected. Bathrooms require 20 amp GFCI protected circuits for outlets, but can not be on a common circuit with kitchen outlets

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
It's not only common, it's required that the kitchen outlets be on two 20A circuits. You can either split them, or wire every other on a circuit.
--
Steve Barker

"Zz Yzx" <zzyzx_ snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com> wrote in message
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Steve Barker LT wrote:

Split meaning that in a single duplex outlet of the outlets is on one circuit, the other outlet is on the 2nd circuit - this is normal wiring.
If not, if you are determining a one side of a duplex outlet is powered by 2 circuit breakers using a meter you are measuring a phantom voltage. Check using a lamp.
If one side of a duplex outlet is powered by 2 circuit breakers as determined by a lamp there is a wiring error.
bud--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What I think you mean is: If you turn on a blue dot circuit the receptacle works, and if you turn on a yellow dot circuit the receptacle works. If you turn off both blue and yellow circuits....the receptacle does not work. This is NOT common. It is an error! If this is the case it means that your circuit is double fed from the panel.
Now! If both of these feeders are connected to the same side of the panel (a single phase panel has two legs, 120 between one leg and ground, and 240 between each leg) it becomes a double fed circuit.
If one of the feeder wires were to be connected on the other side of the panel, it would create a direct 240 short and it would blow the breaker right out of your hand when you turned it on. Errors like that got discovered by the original electricians.
Double fed circuits from the same side do happen and can go undetected for many years. it causes heads to be scratched when homeowner or electrician tries to turn off breakers.
The solution (if this is your problem) is to find the middle receptacle of this loop and disconnect both ends of the wire that forms this loop. Cap them off, label them with some explanation and then check to ascertain you have two properly wired kitchen circuits.
The code requires at least two kitchen circuits, but it was never intended that they be wired to the same receptacles :-)
Randy R. Cox
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Zz Yzx wrote:

Let's hope you mean that one socket of the duplex outlet is on a yellow circuit and the other is on the blue circuit. This could be correct. Each of the two outlets of the usual duplex outlet are by default on the same circuit. However it is possible to change this so that they are each on different circuits.
It is also possible that someone intended to wire it as indicated above, but forgot to remove an ear or two and now both circuits are being feed by two different breakers, hopefully on the same leg. If this is true you have a situation that really needs to be corrected and I suggest hiring someone who knows what they are doing as they will up up against something that is not in most books and unless they personally know what to do someone could get hurt or burn a house down.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
First, a bit of terminology, so we are all on the the same page.
- Receptacle: The electrical contacts into which a "receptacle plug" (for example, the plug for an appliance power cord) is inserted.
- Duplex receptacle: Two receptacles physically mounted together on a single "yoke".
http://photos1.blogger.com/img/3/3091/1024/P1010003.jpg
- Outlet: the point at which current is supplied to an appliance or device - in the case of "household outlets" this is usually an outlet box holding one or more duplex receptacles.
Is your situation that:
a) Each of the two receptacles on a duplex receptacle in a outlet box is powered by a separate circuit (one is powered by circuit "A" and circuit "A" only, and the other by circuit "B", and circuit "B" only)?
- OR -
b) One or both of the two receptacles on a duplex receptacle in a outlet box is powered by a both circuits (is powered if EITHER or BOTH circuit(s) "A" or "B" are energized)?
- OR -
c) Something else?
Michael Thomas Paragon Home Inspection, LLC Chicago IL mdtATparagoninspectsDOTcom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
First, a bit of terminology, so we are all on the the same page.
- Receptacle: The electrical contacts into which a "receptacle plug" (for example, the plug for an appliance power cord) is inserted.
- Duplex receptacle: Two receptacles physically mounted together on a single "yoke".
http://photos1.blogger.com/img/3/3091/1024/P1010003.jpg
- Outlet: the point at which current is supplied to an appliance or device - in the case of "household outlets" this is usually an outlet box holding one or more duplex receptacles.
Is your situation that:
a) Each of the two receptacles on a duplex receptacle in a outlet box is powered by a separate circuit (one is powered by circuit "A" and circuit "A" only, and the other by circuit "B", and circuit "B" only)?
- OR -
b) One or both of the two receptacles on a duplex receptacle in a outlet box is powered by a both circuits (is powered if EITHER or BOTH circuit(s) "A" or "B" are energized)?
- OR -
c) Something else?
Michael Thomas Paragon Home Inspection, LLC Chicago IL mdtATparagoninspectsDOTcom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.