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Thread: Home Inspectors and GFCI's

  1. #1
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    Home Inspectors and GFCI's

    I would really like some opinions regarding my article before I submit it for publishing.

    Thanks,

    Brad Deal
    20/20 Home Inspections

  2. #2
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    I scanned through it and noticed one thing the NEC disagrees with, this paragraph:


    Refrigerators should not be plugged into a GFCI outlet.
    This condition is typically
    found in a garage. GFCI outlets are very sensitive and can misread a spark in the motor
    as a ground fault and trip. When this happens the refrigerator will stop with the
    probability of spoiling the contents of the unit. This can happen at any time without any
    warning. Refrigerators and freezers should never be plugged into a GFCI outlet. There
    should be a dedicated single outlet reserved for operating a refrigerator or freezer.

    The 2008 NEC has removed the exceptions which allowed use of a single receptacle without GFCI protection in garages and basements. Take a look at the changes for the 2008 in 210.8(A). Also 15 and 20 amp, 125 volt all receptacles in commercial kitchens, even those supplying refrigerators, require GFCI protection so the NEC kind of defeats your argument.
    Rob

    Moderator

    All responses based on the 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted

  3. #3
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    I agree with Trevor, do not keep the myth going.

    If the fridge trips the GFCI have the fridge repaired or replace it.

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    I agree too. Given the fact that GFCI's work on construction sites they can certainly work in residential garages for properly working appliances. The correct action from the HI would be to cite the refrigerator as the problem.

    Roger
    Moderator

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    Nicely written Brad but I do agree with the others about GFCI and refrigerators. I have one in my basement that has been GFCI protected for 6 years or so with no incidents. Yes, it is still functioning properly.

    The same is true for computers, they should not trip GFCI's however I can see how a trip down stream can be a probably for data lose. The biggest factor here is the use of the arc faults. With arc fault protection everywhere in the house (almost everywhere) the GFCI will be the least of the problems for the computer data lose. If everthing is wired properly hopefully this will not be that big an issue.
    They say I shot a man named Gray and took his wife to Italy
    She inherited a million bucks and when she died it came to me
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  6. #6
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    Refig. GFCI

    With 2008 now vending machines must also be GFCI protected along with EWC’s and we had problems with EWC’s tripping the GFCI the manufacturers literature indicted that the EWC should not be placed on a GFCI protected circuit however the new 2008NEC requires it. it is not my problem the equipment manufacturers (not all some) build cheap equipment, that trip a GFCI to me this is a problem with the manufacturer (some) however a lot of manufacturers will work fine on a GFCI it just a matter of finding the right one.

  7. #7
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    Good article. I have three minor comments:
    • Middle of page 2: "These papers fail to understand . . . ." I would not expect a paper to understand.
    • Top of page 5" ". . . to protect children from electrocution." I think they might protect an adult as well.
    • General: The use of the word "located" does not make sense to me. You need to know something exists more than you need to know precisely where it is.
    Charles E. Beck, P.E., Seattle
    Comments based on 2017 NEC unless otherwise noted.

  8. #8
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    As others have said don't keep reinforcing the myth that some appliances can't be used with GFCIs. The maximum permitted leakage for a listed appliance is 0.5mA, only 10% of the GFCI trip point. If the GFCI trips either the GFCI is defective (not very likely) or the appliance is a saftey hazard and the GFCI is doing its job.
    Don, Illinois
    (All code citations are 2017 unless otherwise noted)

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    If one is worried about losing the contents of a refrigerator or freezer due to a loss of GFCI power...hook up a simple alarm buzzer ... most sump pumps have battery back ups which sound on loss of power.
    Let's pray that the human race never escapes Earth to spread it's ineiquity eleswhere. C.S. Lewis

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis Alwon View Post
    Nicely written Brad but I do agree with the others about GFCI and refrigerators. I have one in my basement that has been GFCI protected for 6 years or so with no incidents. Yes, it is still functioning properly.

    The same is true for computers, they should not trip GFCI's however I can see how a trip down stream can be a probably for data lose. The biggest factor here is the use of the arc faults. With arc fault protection everywhere in the house (almost everywhere) the GFCI will be the least of the problems for the computer data lose. If everthing is wired properly hopefully this will not be that big an issue.
    A UPS can be purchased at a realative low cost to allow time to save data should a gfi trip
    Those who can do, those who can't teach

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