GFCI Required on refrigerator?

Fred B

Senior Member
Location
Upstate, NY
Occupation
Electrician
.......
I questioned the inspector and he said if it had water running to it it needed to be GFCI and didn’t reference any code section.
.........
Yet another shirt-pocket code inspector. Demand a Code reference.
I know plug in drinking fountain/coolers require GFCI protection per 422.5(A)(2). So would a refrigerator with chilled water dispensing be a water cooler?
 

hillbilly1

Senior Member
Location
Atlanta,Ga
Occupation
Field coordinator/ technical support
I know plug in drinking fountain/coolers require GFCI protection per 422.5(A)(2). So would a refrigerator with chilled water dispensing be a water cooler?
Drinking fountains have integrated sinks, so possibly it could be considered the same as a kitchen or other sink. Dispensers on a refrigerator have an evaporator tray, instead of a drain, so it may be why it’s not considered a sink. Also, dispenser on most refrigerators are non-metallic, where most drinking fountains and sinks are metallic. Just throwing that out there.
 

Fred B

Senior Member
Location
Upstate, NY
Occupation
Electrician
Drinking fountains have integrated sinks, so possibly it could be considered the same as a kitchen or other sink. Dispensers on a refrigerator have an evaporator tray, instead of a drain, so it may be why it’s not considered a sink. Also, dispenser on most refrigerators are non-metallic, where most drinking fountains and sinks are metallic. Just throwing that out there.
Code only uses the words "Drinking water cooler". I've seen these totally plastic and utilize bottled water and have integrated GFCI.
 

jusme123

Senior Member
Location
NY
Occupation
JW
For Gods sake, just make the entire house arc/gfi protected!! No more fancy wording, no more figuring out footage, no more figuring what room your standing in, no more accounting for inspectors that equate a refrigerators water line equivalent to a sink, etc.....
 

edward

Senior Member
Location
CA
Occupation
Electronologist
For Gods sake, just make the entire house arc/gfi protected!! No more fancy wording, no more figuring out footage, no more figuring what room your standing in, no more accounting for inspectors that equate a refrigerators water line equivalent to a sink, etc.....
It will happen. Just wait.

But when it happens then I don't have anyone to argue or debate with. Where is the fun in that?
 

augie47

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Tennessee
Occupation
State Electrical Inspector
About 75% of the new dwellings I inspect have ALL S.Pole on dual function.
The guys quit deciphering NEC & State rules and DF all rather than risk a rejection.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Refrigerators do not specifically require GFCI. The receptacle supplying them does depending on where it is located and what conditions in 210.8 may apply, as well as which edition of NEC applies as it has had some changes each of the past few editions that may impact certain common applications where a refrigerator may be the intended load.

Again refrigerator does not require GFCI, the receptacle it plugs into however might require GFCI.
 
For Gods sake, just make the entire house arc/gfi protected!! No more fancy wording, no more figuring out footage, no more figuring what room your standing in, no more accounting for inspectors that equate a refrigerators water line equivalent to a sink, etc.....
I wouldn't be that opposed to all GFCI single pole breakers, sort of like the afci requirements but without the nonsense. At least GFCI actually does something
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
I wouldn't be that opposed to all GFCI single pole breakers, sort of like the afci requirements but without the nonsense. At least GFCI actually does something
I'd rather see 30 mA GFP for everything and if you do implement any 4-6 mA trip settings for specific circumstances - only do so in the locations that used to be required in about 1987 NEC.
 

WannabeTesla

Member
Location
America
Occupation
Licensed Electrical Contractor
I don't want to get those troubleshooting calls. :oops:
I got that call a couple weeks ago. It started out innocently enough- install a vanity light for a designer. When i finished, ho said "It's beautiful! While you're here..." after a little back and forth with Siemens, well... systematic procedure seems to be the only way to find the problem. I can't confirm but I've heard that some afci breaker mfrs have the means to simplify troubleshooting but canned it due to no demand. Then the code mandated afci and now they're looking at re introducing it. Personally, I'm still on the fence about afci. I like the theory of it, but then i also like the theory of a Mr Fusion being used to power time travel.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
I got that call a couple weeks ago. It started out innocently enough- install a vanity light for a designer. When i finished, ho said "It's beautiful! While you're here..." after a little back and forth with Siemens, well... systematic procedure seems to be the only way to find the problem. I can't confirm but I've heard that some afci breaker mfrs have the means to simplify troubleshooting but canned it due to no demand. Then the code mandated afci and now they're looking at re introducing it. Personally, I'm still on the fence about afci. I like the theory of it, but then i also like the theory of a Mr Fusion being used to power time travel.
Where did you hear that? Code mandated AFCI's around 20 years ago, as time went by mandated them in more places than they initially did.

Installers and troubleshooters have been demanding troubleshooting tips, advice, tools from the very beginning, as the manufacturer's seemed to be guarding exactly how they work from the very beginning. Some the details of how they work are more closely guarded than some of the department of defense classified information is.

Most have at some point introduced self diagnostic features that at very least let user know if last trip was because of AFCI function, GFCI function or regular thermal-magnetic function, and have kept those features since introducing them.
 
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