When Did Gfci Become Required?


I want to Install a GFCI oulet outside. Do I need a GFCI breaker and a GFCI outlet?

If I only need to Install either a GFCI breaker or a GFCI outlet, which one is better?

You can do one or the other, there is no need to do both. In my experience, most use GFCI outlets and not GFCI breakers. I have seen GFCI breakers used where it would be impossible to use an outlet (for example, applying GFI protection to a light in a shower), or in places where access to the outlet to reset it is less convenient (for example, an outdoor outlet that may be hard to reach).

Is a GFCI required on the opposite side of the kitchen?

Do I need to use GFCI on an outlet above a kitchen counter that is on the opposite end of the kitchen from the range/sink? (Those outlets are already GFCI.) This section of counter is completely separate (disconnected) on both sides from the rest of the counter space, and there is no reasonable way for water to be present there.

I have two copies of Code Check at hand (2002 NEC and 2011 NEC) and both require "GFCI protection at all receptacles serving counter tops". The 2002 NEC reference is 210.8A6 and is the same for 2011

If the receptacle is low on the wall (thus not serving the countertop) it does not need GFCI protection.

GFCI regulations have changed considerably over the last few National Electrical Code handbooks (published every three years). If you are still installing GFCI's like you were 6 years ago, you are not following the code. There are also new rules for GFCI's in basements too.

Is GFCI receptacle required on the kitchen countertop wall?

I live in Ontario, Canada. Any one familiar with Ontario Electrical Safety Code please help. In my kitchen, there are some receptacles on the wall behind the countertop, and they are regular receptacles. There is no sink along the wall, it's on the island. In my case, is GFCI receptacle required on the wall? BTW, is 20amp receptacle require in the kitchen? Those receptacles are 20 amp, and they are the only 20 amp receptacle in my house. Thanks!

Forget code and think safety, codes are the absolute MINIMUM allowed so going above and beyond does no harm (in 99% of the cases).

Outlets near a sink are considered a 'damp' location and require GFCI receptacles, they are then 'daisy chained' so all receptacles downstream from a GFCI will be protected.

At least two 20 amp receptacles are required in a kitchen because most kitchen appliances have large amp draws and are usually used at the same time... i.e. coffee maker, toaster, mixer, etc.

A bathroom receptacle is also required to be on a 20 amp GFCI circuit (hairdryers, curling irons).

A microwave oven is required to be on it's own circuit and so is a refrigerator BUT those two items should NOT be on a GFCI... you don't want a nuisance tripping of your fridge and then the food spoils.

The requirement of microwaves being on it's own circuit came into effect shortly after the microwave was invented. Codes are constantly being added so older homes are grandfathered in, but when you upgrade your electrical you are required to follow code.

Is a GFCI required for a ceiling-mounted basement outlet dedicated for a light?

I need to put in an outlet to exclusively power 2 shop lights. It will not be used for anything else, and will be connected to a light switch. Issue is, the circuit isn't GFCI protected (old house). I hear that all basement outlets have to be GFCI according to code. I also have experienced fluorescent light fixtures tripping GFCIs. Is there an exception to this rule for a ceiling mounted outlet dedicated to a light?

Receptacles in unfinished basements must be GFCI protected according to current code. If you do not want a light fixture to be GFCI protected in an unfinished basement, then it must be direct wired. A receptacle that is used primarily for lighting can still be used for other purposes, hence there are no exceptions in regards to receptacles used for lighting.

Edit: The exceptions noted by Lediy99 dealing with "readily accessible" receptacles and receptacles used for appliances in a dedicated space (such as light fixtures) were removed from the NEC in 2008.

How much does it cost to replace a GFCI breaker?

I have a GFCI breaker in my electrical panel that buzzes and seems to malfunction slightly. I'd like to have it replaced by a new one. How much would it cost to have a pro do it for me?

I think replacing the breaker should be looked at by an electrician anyway. The cost depends on the type of GFCI breaker you have. Ranges form 40 bucks or more for a breaker If it is buzzing perhaps you have some kind of trouble in that circuit. What does it go, to usually kitchens or hot tubs etc. have breakers instead of GFCI receptacles anyway.
Best bet would be pay for the service call and see what is causing the problem because it may not be the breaker anyway it could be in the circuit.

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