Why an Outdoor LED Light Can Trip a GFI Outlet
Why does an outdoor LED light fixture trip a GFI Outlet? This electrical wiring question is about an Electrical Problem with a GFCI Outlet in the Back Yard of a Old Home that is connected to an LED Light Fixture.
Electrical Problem with a GFI Outlet
Electrical Question: Why does an outdoor LED light fixture trip a GFI Outlet?
This electrical wiring project involves an Electrical Problem with a GFCI Outlet in the Back Yard of a Older Home.
Dicky, who is a Handyman in Hubertus, Wisconsin encountered the following Electrical Problem:
- I have a circuit that has been in use, I upgraded to a cone Led and a led spot light the lights work but when I added a GFI the GFI trips.
- The circuit is two led lights and a plug, the flood light is at the out side of the house and the cone light is 250 ft away on a pole with a plug at the base. If I open the power lead to the light pole at the house the circuit and light works OK, but if I open the power lead at the pole, and connect it at the house the GFI trips.
- If I run a 250 ft wire to the pole on the surface and connect it at the house and have it open at the pole it trips the GFI. It looks like the GFI does not like the long wire. I have changed the GFI and the symptom is the same.
- Does a GFI require the power and ground to be equal (==) in length. I would like a GFI on this circuit because the light pole is out side near a lake. Any Ideas?
Thanks for your electrical question Dicky.
LED Light Trips a GFI Outlet
Application: Electrical Problem with a GFCI Outlet.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor, or Certified Electrician.
Electrical Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, Voltage Tester, and appropriate Safety Gear.
Estimated Time: Depends on the personal level experience, ability to work with tools, install electrical circuit wiring, and the available access to the project area.
Electrical Safety: Identify the electrical power source to the GFCI Outlet, turn it OFF and Tag with a Note before working with the electrical wiring.
Electrical Wiring Parts and Materials: Electrical parts and materials for the GFCI Outlet should be approved for the specific project and compliant with local and national electrical codes.
Electrical Codes and Inspections: Installing or changing home electrical wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes as adopted in Hubertus, Wisconsin. A permit and inspections may also be required.
Resources to help you do electrical wiring in your area:
Locate Electricians or Electrical Contractors in Wisconsin
Wisconsin Electrical Contractor License, Building Permits and Electrical Codes
Electrical Problem with an LED Light Tripping a GFCI Outlet
GFCI Outlet Electrical Problem
The GFCI Outlet must be wired from the wiring of the same circuit, therefore the wiring must be contiguous, and not connected to other circuit wires because this could cause the GFI Outlet to trip, but there is more to this problem as described below.
The GFCI Circuit Wire Length
This is what I suspect to be the cause of this tripping GFI outlet:
The 250 foot length of the circuit wires can create a voltage drop that would affect the performance of the GFCI Outlet.
GFCI Outlet Circuit Repair
Due to the length of this circuit, the size of the circuit wires should be increased.
If this is a 15amp circuit, then consider installing #12 AWG Copper wire.
If this is a 20amp circuit, then consider installing #10 AWG Copper wire.
If the circuit wires are inside a conduit then it is best to use stranded wires instead of solid wires.
More about Electrical Problem a GFCI Outlet
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Lighting Electrical Codes
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The features and benefits of GFCI outlets and receptacles will give you a clear understanding of the importance why these safety devices are required by code to help protect you and your family against accidental electrical shock hazards.
This list of articles will help you learn about the features and benefits provided by GFI and GFCI Receptacles and how they are wired.
The following may also be helpful for you:
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
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The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
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 that I use to easily Detect 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.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.
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