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    Steam shower

    I'm intstlling a 9K electric steam generating unit for steam shower in my laundry room, would it have to use a GFI breaker?

    #2
    Originally posted by Adams14 View Post
    I'm intstlling a 9K electric steam generating unit for steam shower in my laundry room, would it have to use a GFI breaker?
    Since the NEC omits this specific appliance from GFCI requirements, the only regulating body for safety remains a nationally recognized testing laboratory (NRTL) certification during manufacture.

    During warm-up the UL category for electric water-heating appliances allows up to 4mA current leakage, which approaches the Class-A GFCI trip range of 6mA.

    There is a double-faced industry in the States. On one side more expensive UL listed steam generators can require GFCI protection in their install instructions, since its built to pass that standard with flying colors, with no concern of nuisance tripping the GFCI.

    On the other side most cheep ones are sold without any NRTL certification, that either can't pass the 4mA leakage standard, or don't care to pay for NRTL cert. during manufacture. Their instruction manuals will not specify GFCI requirements, and therefore can't be enforced under NEC 110.3(B).

    While avoiding NRTL listings is not legal or insurable in states that adopt the NEC, it may be legal in some overseas jurisdictions that don't require NRTL certifications.

    Unlisted equipment is also available online to any idiot willing to have it shipped, installed, and void their Property insurance policy, which demands listing requirements per NEC.
    Roger Ramjet NoFixNoPay

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      #3
      I have not run across a steam shower that required a gfci. The unit is not in he shower so I am not sure why they would require it.
      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
      I can't help it if I'm lucky

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        #4
        Originally posted by Dennis Alwon View Post
        I have not run across a steam shower that required a gfci. The unit is not in he shower so I am not sure why they would require it.
        The units recommended to my clients, which demand Class A GFCI (See #2), are built to comply with the toughest safety certifications, including UL for the United Kingdom, CE for Europe, the tough TUV for Germany and ETL for the USA approval.

        No ground fault is needed if the installation-instruction manual either prohibits GFCI / GFI or does not require it, and steam unit has valid NRTL Cert., such as most models listed for North America UL under KQBZ.

        However I don't have to recommend those models if I'm more comfortable protecting my clients with Class A GFCI. The tougher TUV standard comes more economically in many cases, and allows me to avoid gambling with counterfeit NRTL labels that void instructions, and overwhelm this equipment space.
        Roger Ramjet NoFixNoPay

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          #5
          Originally posted by ramsy View Post
          The units recommended to my clients, which demand Class A GFCI (See #2), are built to comply with the toughest safety certifications, including UL for the United Kingdom, CE for Europe, the tough TUV for Germany and ETL for the USA approval.

          No ground fault is needed if the installation-instruction manual either prohibits GFCI / GFI or does not require it, and steam unit has valid NRTL Cert., such as most models listed for North America UL under KQBZ.

          However I don't have to recommend those models if I'm more comfortable protecting my clients with Class A GFCI. The tougher TUV standard comes more economically in many cases, and allows me to avoid gambling with counterfeit NRTL labels that void instructions, and overwhelm this equipment space.
          Most of us here are not specifying this sort of equipment and are just there to connect it to the power source. Once it is has arrived (no matter who ordered it) the end user don't want to hear, "I won't connect it, it is not listed for use here" and so we either connect it or let them hire someone else to connect it if we still refuse to do so.

          If an inspector is going to reject it, we at least have that to fall on and say "I told you so".
          I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

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            #6
            Originally posted by kwired View Post
            Most of us here are not specifying this sort of equipment and are just there to connect it to the power source..
            It's either repair or replace for me.

            If no fix, people expect my recommendation, or a referral. People are not comfortable with a clueless punt, but seem OK with a thoughtful hand off.

            When fix is possible, repair of all violations is part of my bid, and since most existing steam units are missing proper disconnects, my batting average has been ~50% using 2-pole GFCI SPA disconnects.

            Good heating elements can hold a GFCI, but the element is considered a consumable not usually warranted for over 6 months.
            Roger Ramjet NoFixNoPay

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