Wind Storm and GFCI Outlets
Why did a wind storm cause my GFCI outlets to trip off?
Wind Storm Trips GFCI Outlets
Electrical Question: Why did a wind storm cause my GFCI outlets to trip off?
Enormous Wind Storm Causes Tripped GFCI Outlets
- In mid December 2020 in northern New Jersey, New York city area we had enormous wind storms for about 12 hours. They went through during the night. I believe we lost power multiple times during the night and it came back on multiple times.
- When I got up in the morning the power was on and all of the GFCI connected outlets in the kitchen were tripped. I reset them. I also noticed that all other GFCI outlets in the house that were connected to some appliance were out too. There was one that was not out, assumed it was not out because it was not attached to an appliance.
- I reset them and everything is normal. This is not new construction. All outlets have been in place for years and nothing like this has ever happened before.
- The appliances that I mention above were a coffee maker, a toaster, a tooth brush charger.
- These outlets were on 2 separate circuits and no breaker tripped in the breaker box. this is a 100 amp circuit to the house.
What do you think happened?
Additional Comments: Great site. I enjoy your descriptions and comments.
Thanks for your electrical wiring question David.
How GFCI Outlets Protect against Damage from a Wind Storm
Application: Install GFCI Outlets for Electrical Protection.
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 your specific area. A permit and inspections may also be required.
Electrical Problem a GFCI Outlet in a Kitchen
This electrical wiring question is about Electrical Protection provided by GFCI Outlets in the Kitchen of a Old Home.
GFCI Outlets Provide Protection
- David, from the information you have provided, this may be caused by an environmental condition which was influenced by the wind storm, causing a voltage transient on the grid, or a sudden change in the atmosphere ionic condition, or a combination thereof, similar to the effects of a lightning storm.
- When one considers the vast array of electrical and electronic conditions that are now found all around us, and then the influencing affect that various storms have on this type of environment, we now see an increase in disturbances in our electrical systems.
- At the least, we have GFCI and AFCI protection to serve as one level of protection against damage to our connected devices and appliances.
- Due to the increase of these types of occurrences including what you have described here, surge protectors are now required by the NEC to be installed in all new residential construction projects.
- With this in mind, you may consider installing a surge protector at your home as well which will provide you with protection starting at the main entry point of the electrical utility to your home which will help prevent damage spreading throughout the home electrical circuits and the connected devices.
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