Originally Posted By: ecrofutt
This post was automatically imported from our archived forum.
GFCI Boiler plate:
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI) were not present in the electrical system. GFCI are intended to shut down the electricity when a shock hazard starts in the electrical system.
There is a little electrician hiding in the GFCI. He watches the electricity come in over one shoulder and go out over the other shoulder. If there's no difference, he just sits there. If a difference is created, (you drop your shaver or hair dryer into the tub or sink), he immediately shuts down the electricity attempting to keep you from being shocked.
The problem with your little electrician is that he likes fishing. One of these days, he is going to get up and go fishing. When he does, he isn't coming back. The only way you're going to know if he is still in there is to test the outlet or breaker every 30 to 45 days.
Plug something into the outlet, hit the test button and then the reset button. If it shut down the power and then restored the power, the little electrician is still in there working for you. If it didn't, your little electrician has gone fishing. You need to get a licensed electrician to replace your little electrician.
Some of the currently required locations for GFCI's may not have been required when this house was constructed, however, I recommend that all outlets needing ground fault protection, as recognized by the newest national safety standards be upgraded. I recommend that this upgrade be completed by a licensed electrician.
FYI: The following dates indicate when nationally accepted minimum safety standards required GFCI protection. The local minimum safety standards may have adopted this protection at an earlier or later date.
DATES GFCI REQUIRMENTS WERE ESTABLISHED:
1971 Receptacles within 15 feet of pool walls
1971 All equipment used with storable swimming pools
1973 All outdoor receptacles
1974 Construction Sites
1975 Bathrooms, 120-volt pool lights, and fountain equipment
1978 Garages, spas, and hydromassage tubs
1978 Outdoor receptacles above 6ft.6in. grade access exempted
1984 Replacement of non-grounding receptacles with no grounding conductor allowed
1984 Pool cover motors
1984 Distance of GFCI protection extended to 20 feet from pool walls
1987 Unfinished basements
1987 Kitchen countertop receptacles within 6 feet of sink
1990 Crawlspaces (with exception for sump pumps or other dedicated equip.)
1993 Wet bar countertops within 6 feet of sink
1993 Any receptacle replaced in an area presently requiring GFCI
1996 All kitchen counters ? not just those within 6 feet of sink
1996 All exterior receptacles except dedicated de-icing tape receptacle
1996 Unfinished accessory buildings at or below grade
1999 Exemption for dedicated equipment in crawlspace removed
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