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GFI kitchen replacement receptacle #204846
01/16/12 12:24 AM
01/16/12 12:24 AM
cgw  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 133
Rochester NY
#1 Replacing a non-grounding receptacle in a kitchen? Would a GFI work? Use a GFI circuit breaker for the circuit?

question #2 (complete unrelated to #1 different house with ground wire) - Replaced a receptacle that shared a box with a lights switch. The GFI tripped immediately. It turns out the light is on a different circuit. The ground wires were all tied togther in the box. Would this by itself trip the GFI?

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Re: GFI kitchen replacement receptacle [Re: cgw] #204851
01/16/12 02:54 AM
01/16/12 02:54 AM
gfretwell  Online Content

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,187
Yes and Yes.
In fact you should determine if the two circuits are a muntiwire circuit or if there are two neutrals going back to the panel. If it is 2 neutrals, split them and the loads. If it is a genuine multiwire, be sure it is marked and properly phased, then install a GFCI receptacle on the load side of the split.

Greg Fretwell
Re: GFI kitchen replacement receptacle [Re: cgw] #204853
01/16/12 10:43 AM
01/16/12 10:43 AM
electure  Offline

Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,265
Fullerton, CA USA
Yes and No,

#2: The equipment grounding conductors being all connected together won't trip the GFCI. In fact they are required to be connected together by Code.

As Greg said above, the neutral (or grounded) must be somehow involved.

Re: GFI kitchen replacement receptacle [Re: cgw] #204857
01/16/12 03:24 PM
01/16/12 03:24 PM
gfretwell  Online Content

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,187
Thanks for clarifying that. I misread #2 and thought all of the white wires were connected together.

If you do get the ground and neutral touching it will trip a GFCI tho. That can easily happen in that big kludge ceiling box with an over stuffed neutral wirenut and a little copper showing.

Greg Fretwell
Re: GFI kitchen replacement receptacle [Re: cgw] #204878
01/18/12 01:12 PM
01/18/12 01:12 PM
HappyElectrician  Offline
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 31
Penn USA
Just my two cents added here.

Technically a GFCI does not work off of a ground wire at all. One is not even needed for it to function correctly. The functioning of a GFCI is as follows: the current going into the GFCI must be matched by the current leaving the GFCI by the nuetral (grounded)wire. If there is a difference between 4 to 6 milliamps then the GFCI will trip. This is why many 2 prong recepts are replaced with a GFCI just for safety and not for the equipment ground. The difference is telling the GFCI that amperage is missing and going somewhere it should not be going to.

As far as using a GFCI breaker for the kitchen that is not necessary and expensive. Replace the 2prong recept with a GFCI recpt and place the label provided with the GFCI "GFCI Protected" "No equipment ground"

Hope that helps


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