3 Reasons your GFCI outlet quit working.

Did you know that the GFCI outlets (gfi plug) in your home is a quantum advance in home safety. I measure this according to the electrical system in homes and businesses that I was exposed to  when I was a child.

My father was a very accomplished electrician and as children, my older brothers and I would love to follow Dad on outings. ( service calls) He would let us hold his tools and sometimes pull wire thru an attic. As the youngest and smallest, I would get the honor of pulling wire under a house because of my size. To this day, I still don’t like crawling under a house.

When we had a problem with a circuit, you would get shocked. Today we have technology to protect us.

Back to the GFI.  here are the most common causes we find for a GFCI to trip.

  1. Frayed cord on an appliance or hand tool.
  2. Water or rain on an outdoor cord.
  3. Close by lightning strike.
gfci plug

The gfci outlet is called a "gfi plug"

The GFI plug does not trip because of an overload or to much plugged in. This is the job of the circuit breaker. The gfi plug will measure the current flow into the plug and the flow of current back (thru the appliance) to the plug. When there is a leak ,or the current going out does not match the current coming in; the GFI trips (opens) and turns off the voltage to the plug.

This current leakage could be a leak to ground via the cord or it could be the current is traveling thru your body. The standard GFCI outlet will open up or trip at .oo4 – .006 amps.  In comparison, a standard 60 watt light bulb has .500 amps of current. As you can see, a gfi trips at a very low level of leakage. This is not fool proof, but this still saves many lives every year.

Here are the areas in a home or business that GFCI outlets are required.

  • Bathroom
  • Kitchen Counter top
  • Garage
  • Outdoor outlets
  • Publicly Accessible outlets (business)

If you have questions about your home wiring, call. We may not be able to answer your questions over the phone, but we have answers to any issue about your wiring or outlet problems.

When your gfi plug quits working, unplug any cords and try the reset button on front. If this does not work, Call. we can help. I also have a DYI (do it yourself ) blog for common problems. Check out our blog to save money if you are a “fix it ” kind of person.

Jeffries Electric is a family owned small business. We deliver great service and value. Call us for an appointment. We not only fix GFCI or gfi plugs, but we install 200 amp panels and we can light up your home inside or out with fantastic lighting. We will help you to achieve your energy goals with energy saving lights and new wiring. Had a bad trip? We can fix a tripped breaker. We can install whole house surge protectors to save those valuable home appliances that need surge protection.

About the Author: Jeffries Electric