How to Repair a GFI Problem
How to Locate and Repair a GFI Outlet or Circuit Problem: The Most Common Problems with GFCI Outlets and How to Fix Them.
Guide to GFI Outlet Problems and How to Fix Them
Electrical Question: I have a problem with GFI installation.
- The GFI was installed by new electricians.
- A problem occurs when I turn on an appliance the GFI trips off.
- I checked the wiring of the GFI and it seems that hot and neutral wires were wired correct.
- What would you recommend to help me find the problem?
Thank you in advance.
This home electrical repairs question came from: Don, from Tampa, FL.
Thanks for your electrical troubleshooting question Don.
How to Locate and Repair a GFI Outlet or Circuit Problem
Application: Testing GFCI Outlet and Circuit Wiring.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools a Voltage Tester or Plug-In Circuit Analyzer.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools, the extent of the electrical repairs, the number of outlets that are affected and access to each location.
Precaution: Identify the GFCI outlet circuit, turn it OFF and Tag it with a Note before working with the wiring.
The Most Common Problems with GFCI Outlets and How to Fix Them
- GFI Outlet Problems
A GFI circuit problem can be caused by several things including the devices or appliances that are connected to the GFI circuit.
- Check what is Plugged Into the Outlet
Start by checking the appliance that is connected when the GFI trips off because there may be a problem with the internal wiring for the appliance.
- Isolating the Problem
If the GFI does not trip off when other things are connected then the GFI circuit wiring may be correct.
- Check the Wiring of the GFI Outlet
- The Incoming circuit wiring is attached to the LINE side.
- The Outgoing circuit wiring is connected to the LOAD side.
- Segments of the GFI Circuit
Test each item separately in order to isolate the problem, then check the suspected device for wiring problems or abnormalities.
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This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester, [amazon.com], I use for the detection of Standard Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
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