Double GFCI

I just inspected an older home that has a GFCI circuit breaker servicing both bathrooms. When the house was remodeled they installed a GFCI outlet in each bathroom. Is there an issue with this? When I used my little cheapo outlet tester and pushed the test button it tripped out the GFCI circuit breaker in the garage. When I used my more advanced outlet tester it tripped the GFCI circuit breaker the second I plugged it in, never touching the test button. Is it wrong or unsafe to double the GFCI protection on the same circuit? This may be a newbie question, but I just don’t know.

I consider it nuisance and would recommend removal of the extra devices.

agreed…since the GFCI is sensing flow between hot and neutral, even plugging your device in caused a variance which tripped the breaker.

I dont believe it’s a defect, but definitely worth mentioning because it would definitely lead to numerous “nuisance trips”

If you never pressed the test button why did the CB trip?

I think it may have tripped because of the variance sensed in neutral, just from plugging the device in?

I’m just wondering if you never depressed the test button how would there be any variance unless the testing device were defective.

It only takes like 6mA’s variance to trip. It may be possible that is decreased by doubling the GFCI circuit (breaker plus receptacle), and plugging anything in may cause that variance.

I’ve had some receptacles that required a minute or so before they would reset without tripping, maybe he didn’t let the receptacle recover from the first trip?

Either way, it’s likely a non-hazardous nuisance trip. That’s what I’d report.

Just keep asking questions Robert…you’ll learn electrical soon enough! :wink:


So when there are two GFCI devices on one circuit it will cause nuisance tripping of one of the devices?

I don’t think it’s having two or more GFCI’s on one circuit is the problem.

The problem is the GFCI is GFCI’d…If you were to wire them in series to the “line” side instead of the “load” side, you may get the nuisance tripping.

Keep in mind this is strictly a hillbilly’s opinion, I’m no GFCI engineer!! :|.)

There are many here that have a much stronger electrical background than myself.

I’m just trying to understand this for my own edification. I was under the impression that a GFCI receptacle should function just fine on a circuit protected by a GFCI circuit breaker (maybe that thought is incorrect).

In this case the cheapo tester tripped the GFCI as expected when the test button was pressed. The expensive tester tripped the GFCI when it was plugged in before the test button was pressed. That seems a little odd which sounds like the bases for Eric’s questions.

Yer just tryin’ to start trouble again, ain’t cha? :stuck_out_tongue:

When this occurs, it’s been my experience that the GFCI device (the one that’s tripping) is defective.

The nuisance is the multiple devices on one circuit and trying to find the one that tripped out first.

Thanks Michael, as I tend to do some times I was over thinking this one. :shock:

Each bathroom is to have its own 20 amp circuit protected by a gfci breaker or receptacle. The two bathrooms can not be on the same circuit

Not entirely true.

You can share all bathroom outlets on a single GFCI


you can have each bathroom including it’s light circuit on it’s own individual GFCI circuit.

The “rules” for GFCI have changed over the years but this is the current “rule”

Yep !

You can share all bathroom receptacles on a single 20 amp circuit,

Thanks for the 20A clarification. :wink:

It depends on the total circuit draw.