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Thread: Hardwired sump pump

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Minnesota
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    Hardwired sump pump

    There has been a few times in the last month where I have cut the ends off cords of equipment and hard wired to eliminate GFI protection for personnel. I did provide a disconnecting means. One example was a sump pump, I simply cut the end of the cord off and hardwired it in a 1900 box and put a single pole switch in. This came about because a contractor did not want another GFI receptacle that someone could plug into and possibly overload the circuit. The power for the sump pump was taken off the garage circuit. The contractor did not want to pay for a separate circuit to be brought to the sump pump.
    Another example was heat trace cable in a crawl space. I did the same thing, but I used a equipment rated GFI breaker.
    I have never done this before, I have never seen anyone else do it. I always thought that cutting a cord off an appliance or piece of equipment was a no no. The only way I have ever wired for a sump pump was a GFI receptacle on a dedicated circuit.

    So basically what I'm doing is hardwiring instead of using cord and plug to eliminate GFI protection for personnel.
    Anyone else ever do this? Do you see a problem?

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    It's almost guaranteed that you've violated the listing of the pump by cutting off the plug and hard-wiring it not to mention the warranty.
    Rob

    Chief Moderator

    All responses based on the 2011 NEC unless otherwise noted

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    In NC we have an amendment for sump pumps. Why does it need a dedicated circuit- I don't know.

    Quote Originally Posted by NC Amendment to 210.8
    Exception No. 2 to (3): A single outlet receptacle supplied by dedicated branch circuit which is located and identified for specific use
    by a sewage lift pump.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Most likely nothing will ever happen, but if it does you will be screwed and you will not be able to put a good spin on it.

    A sump pump should run without tripping a GFCI, the fact it is tripping the GFCI is a sign of a problem with the pump not the GFCI.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis Alwon View Post
    In NC we have an amendment for sump pumps. Why does it need a dedicated circuit- I don't know.
    IMO a sewage lift pump and a sump pump are not the same thing.
    Rob

    Chief Moderator

    All responses based on the 2011 NEC unless otherwise noted

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by infinity View Post
    IMO a sewage lift pump and a sump pump are not the same thing.
    You are correct. I thought the amendment for for sump pumps and sewer pumps-- I should have read it before I posted it.

  7. #7
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    Just install a single receptacle by the pump with a faceless GFCI protection in the garage or somewhere accessible. It is not a good design to have the
    GFCI in the crawl space by the pump, I am assuming it is in the crawl space or basement.

    Remember GFCI doesn't protect against overload.
    Edward
    Education is a progressive discovery of our ignorance.

  8. #8
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    People always complain about refrigerator on GFCI's. It can be an issue after lightning storms etc but I have a 26 year old refrigerator in my basement that has been working on gfci for years. BTW you can buy a fairly cheap alarm that senses the temp drop-- Some new refrig. have them built in.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Minnesota
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    Quote Originally Posted by edward View Post
    Just install a single receptacle by the pump with a faceless GFCI protection in the garage or somewhere accessible. It is not a good design to have the
    GFCI in the crawl space by the pump, I am assuming it is in the crawl space or basement.

    Remember GFCI doesn't protect against overload.
    The sump pump is installed at the front end of a garage, far from the panel. The dead front GFI is a good thought, I thought of that after the fact. I did get the okay from the boss on this install, it just seemed unusual.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by edward View Post
    Just install a single receptacle by the pump with a faceless GFCI protection in the garage or somewhere accessible. It is not a good design to have the
    GFCI in the crawl space by the pump, I am assuming it is in the crawl space or basement.

    Remember GFCI doesn't protect against overload.
    I think that his concern is having the sump pump with GFCI protection where tripping of the device could prove to be very costly. The removal of the exception of GFCI protection was for increased safety of a user who would unplug the sump pump and use portable tools in the unprotected receptacle. The protection in itself was not for the pump. Here in NJ we're still permitted to use a single receptacle without GFCI protection for sump pump. As a matter of personal preference I would never put a sump pump on a GFCI protected outlet in my own home.
    Rob

    Chief Moderator

    All responses based on the 2011 NEC unless otherwise noted

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