GFCI Testing

Does anyone test GFCI’s to see how many milliseconds it takes for the device to open?

Not specifically, but yes.

My equipment shows the trip time after each test. It provides a 7.4 mA load for up to 6.5 seconds. When I reset the device, it shows the time it took to trip.

Is there a standard time allowance before you include it in your report?

I would not expect the HI to test this regarding a time specific number. As long as they use the test button as the manufacturers specify then nothing more is needed.

This would go beyond the standard of practice in my opinion.

I agree, but from what I’ve read this is becoming more and more prevalent with the recommendation that devices that don’t trip quickly enough be replaced. IMO the test button is all that one should be using as recommended by the device manufacturer.

As long as it trips within the 6.5 seconds at the max load of 7.4 mA, I call it good.

After the 6.5 seconds, the equipment aborts the test. There’s no override in the equipment for this function.

Ahhh…I see where you were going with the question and I agree 100%. The HI should not (nor electricians) try to determine adequate reaction or trip times as doing so in any way raises unwanted liability.

Prevalent where? Can you share stuff you’ve read? HI’s recommending replacement?


Jeff, if 7.4mA is going through this device it will react much faster than 6.5 seconds. The manufacturers themselves have a much more stringently standard in UL943 so I would not stand on 6.5 seconds. In court I would argue that IF the inspector tested to this level and and accepted 6.5 seconds that they were possibly negligent…If someone dies.

I would just stay away from those types of numbers. However, if I just pushed the test button as the manufacturer recommends then I’m free of neglect and simply following my SOP.

I don’t concern myself with the numbers Paul. This is just the way the instrument is programmed.

I don’t recall ever seeing an instance where, when the GFCI was functional, the trip took more than 0.06 seconds.

Cool…just did not want a rash of HI’s to begin doing this. Not all are quite as advanced.