I have a bunch of outlets labelled GFCI protected including one in a
bathroom. This outlet used to work but then one day the GFCI
protection must have tripped. Unfortunately, the outlet itself doesn't
have the reset switch built-in so I imagine there must be a master
GFCI switch somewhere. I thought it would be the circuit breaker box
but it doesn't seem to be there. Where could it be???
If there's no GFCI breaker in the box, then one of the other outlets
must be the one with the GFCI breaker, and the rest of the outlets are
fed from that.
So look for an outlet with a couple of extra buttons on it (one to Test,
the other to Reset). One of the buttons could be (not necessarily) a
different color from the rest of the outlet (I think I've seen red and
yellow), and there could be an indicator light to show that it's tripped
and needs to be reset.
On 09/10/04 04:03 pm Email Invalid put fingers to keyboard and launched
the following message into cyberspace:
An outlet can be GFCI protected three ways. It can be a GFCI outlet, it can
be hooked up to a GFCI breaker, or it can be hooked up to another GFCI
outlet on the same circuit. The latter is usually the case when you see one
of those stickers. Check all outlets in your kitchen and bathroom for extra
buttons and reset it.
Since the dead outlet is in a bathroom, don't bother looking in the kitchen for
the actual GFCI outlet, it won't be there. Look in your other bathrooms, or the
garage outlet, or an outdoor outlet mounted to the house.
It won't be there because kitchen receptacles have to be on 20a circuits, and
those circuits cannot be shared with other receptacles in rooms other than
dining rooms, pantrys, or breakfast nooks/rooms.
Therefore, a GFCI outlet in a kitchen cannot be the master GFCI for the
Actually, I'm thinking it was built between 72-mid 90's. Regardless, Kitchen
circuits haven't been intermingled with bathrooms or other non-food/eating
rooms since the 60's.
Yes, some previous homeowner could have taken liberties s/he shouldn't have,
but in that case ALL bets are off.
firstname.lastname@example.org (HA HA Budys Here) wrote in message
I had already tried the GFCI switch in the kitchen but as you point
out it only works for the GFCI outlets around the kitchen and is
unconnected to the bathrooms.
So I had to look elsewhere and after looking everywhere, I finally
found the GFCI master switch for all the bathrooms. I have a 2-1/2
story house with 3 bathrooms (2 full, one half) on all floors and it
turns out that the GFCI switch is located in the small, hardly used,
half-bathroom. It was difficult to find and also not intuitive that
all the bathrooms located on all three levels are controlled by one
GFCI. The key was to look at all the bathrooms as suggested even ones
far away from the outlet not working.
Thanks for all the help from everyone.
email email@example.com (Email Invalid) wrote in message
Now, it's worth wondering why that outlet tripped. Is that bathroom
humid? Did someone bathe the dog in there and let him shake himself
dry? Maybe that outlet is getting old.
If you're looking for another job in your job jar, you might consider
re-wiring the circuit so each bathroom has its own GFCI outlet, rather
than being daisy-chained through the first one.
"Re-wiring" is not what is necessary. Rather, if the boxes are large
enough for individual GFI receptacles, then only "reconnecting" the
wires in the present GFI box and adding the GFIs elswhere is necessary.
Ok, so we can call this re-wiring if you wish, but the point is that
it may be a fairly simple thing to do. --Phil
Phil Munro Dept of Electrical & Computer Engin
mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org Youngstown State University
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