A couple of days ago, I bought one of those cheap Chinese built Haier window airconditioners at Target for a doghouse/storage shed project. It was a 5200 BTUH unit, 120 volts. I was kind of surprised to see that it came with a GFI built into the plug, but what made me wonder was the warning label attached to the cord which read like this:
The conductors inside this cord are surrounded by shields, which monitor leakage current. THESE SHIELDS ARE NOT GROUNDED.
Periodically examine the cord the any damage. DO NOT USE this product in the even the shield becomes expose.
Anybody have any idea what their "monitoring shields" are, and are they required by code or what????
Beachboy, Just as a note, I was roundly dressed down during my time as an Electrical Apprentice for installing an Air Conditioning unit on an RCD (same as a GFCI), even though the thing was a temporary supply with a socket-outlet on the outside of the house, I was told that it shouldn't have been fed via an RCD. Word came back that the RCD kept tripping because of the compressor leakage currents. Some electrician's have been caught red-faced with wiring houses here where the fridge or a freezer have been plugged into an RCD-protected outlet, but with the thing tripping months later (home-owners never test them either which doesn't help), usually when the home-owner is away getting some sun overseas during the Winter here. My advice would be, stay well away from GFCI circuits and Refrigeration/Aircon circuits, as far as mixing the two go. It will only end in tears. Refrigeration and A/C manufacturers were supposed to have all of their leakage currents down under the level that would trip an RCD/GFCI, Yay, great to see they took that seriously!. Once again it is the Electrician that bears the blame.
My advice would be, stay well away from GFCI circuits and Refrigeration/Aircon circuits, as far as mixing the two go. It will only end in tears.
Mike that is not a choice under the NEC, currently the NEC requires GFCI protection on all 125 volt 15 & 20 amp commercial kitchen receptacles to have GFCI protected, many of these circuits will feed refrigeration equipment.
In dwelling unit Garages and basements GFCI protection is required and currently there is an exception for appliances in a dedicated space. When the 2008 NEC comes out the exceptions will be gone, if you place a spare freezer in the basement it will be GFCI protected.
The point is as far as the NEC is concerned it does not mater what your plugging into the circuit it only matters where there receptacle is located.
The one exception is for ice melting equipment as it has a high leakage current by design.
One last thing, according to the NEC hand book they do not believe it is the compressor causing the false trips, they believe it has to do with the electric defrost circuits in many refrigeration appliances.
Bob Badger Construction & Maintenance Electrician Massachusetts
Re: Chinese Air Conditioner
#164221 05/28/0711:16 AM05/28/0711:16 AM
440.65 Leakage Current Detection and Interruption (LCDI) and Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) Single-phase cord-and-plug-connected room air conditioners shall be provided with factory-installed LCDI or AFCI protection. The LCDI or AFCI protection shall be an integral part of the attachment plug or be located in the power supply cord within 300 mm (12 in.) of the attachment plug.