I am wondering if it is normal for a GFCI outlet to trip often,
whenever a plug is inserted or removed? I've installed a few of these,
and am certain that the wiring was done correctly, but I've had the
same problem on all of them. This happens no matter what appliance is
plugged in. Maybe because the outlets are very new, I find that it
takes quite a bit more effort to insert and remove plugs from the
outlets - they are very tight. Would that have anything to do with
If this only happened on one outlet, I would suspect a possible short
from the pressure of plugging and unplugging, but this is occurring on
Never heard of anything like that; strange. You say it's
happening on "all of them" and then later say "several".
Are they all on the same breaker, or sourced from the same
side of your breakerbox? Are they all 3-wire, some 2-wire,
You say it happens when an appliance is plugged in.
What about non-appliances? Radio, light, shaver, etc.? Is
it only when it's an appliance with a motor, never a motor,
It's not going to turn out to be the force needed to
plug/unplug, I am pretty confident of that.
Offhand, for now, I suspect a possible "ground loop",
meaning that somehow some grounds have been wired in
parallel so that stray induction currents, etc. are created
and it's enough to disturb the GFCI ckt and activate it. It
only takes a few milliamps, ten I think, don't remember for
sure, to trip it. If the ground makes a leap of some sort
when a load is attached, that would cause a trip. If you
have one, you might be ab le to see that current by watching
the voltage change during plug in/out.
Of no one else has an "aha" answer for you, come on back
with further details. I don't have an "aha!" for this one,
but it can be trouble-shot. First suspect, I think, is a
parallel earth or neutral wiring causing a loop that changes
when something is plugged in.
In addition to what pop suggested, I will suggest that it may be wired
incorrectly. Make sure the ground is ground and the neutral is neutral and
not the other way around. It is also possible the GFCI is bad, overly
sensitive. Maybe it is just your electric personality.
Haven't seen anything like that but...
If the trips literally only occur during the plugging/unplugging could it be
that the act itself is physically causing a flexing of the GFCI outlet's
body which is causing the latching component inside to release? Normally
this armature is physically latched when you hit the reset button but is
then released by a coil when the circuit that amplifies and detects the
current differential senses problems. Looking inside a defunct GFCI there
doesn't seem to be much holding it closed and even the slightest bit of
flexing in the housing might release it if the design was a bit iffy (like
overly thing plastic mouldings that saved them $0.003 per unit during
manufacturing). Just an offhand idea but if all of your quirky GFCIs are of
the same make and model it would seem even more likely to me.
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