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Old 08-01-2011, 08:39 AM   #1
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GFCI not working.


Hi All,

So yesterday my wife went to heat up a hot pocket (ahh nothing like living out of boxes while you move in) for lunch yesterday and the whole kitchen lost power. Not a whole lot of load in the kitchen on that circuit, pretty much just a fridge, microwave, and a few lightweight appliances (phone, baby monitor, etc).

Upon further inspection, I noticed that the GFCI outlet in the kitchen would not reset. I assumed this was throwing the whole kitchen off, so I went to replace it, and found that whoever installed it had not grounded it at all. Ran to HD, installed a new one, grounded it, but it still wont work. I hooked both terminals up to the "Line" circuit, the green light is on, and the other plugs on the circuit are now working, but the GFCI still wont reset and the outlet does not work.

What is my next step?

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Old 08-01-2011, 09:25 AM   #2
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GFCI not working.


Start from the panel, and trace the wire run to figure out the junction points. How old is this house?

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Old 08-01-2011, 09:33 AM   #3
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GFCI not working.


1958, has been updated to 100 amp w/ circuit breakers tho
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:38 AM   #4
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I hooked both terminals up to the "Line" circuit, the green light is on, and the other plugs on the circuit are now working, but the GFCI still wont reset and the outlet does not work.

What is my next step?
The GFCI should have a black and white connected to the Line - this is the power feed. The other receptacles in the kitchen that are on this circuit have to be connected to the Load terminal of the GFCI. Is this how you have it?
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:49 AM   #5
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GFCI not working.


No, the previous one only had the two, black on line and white on load, and mine I did both on line, (due to my lack of experience), plus ground, the other outlets must be in a series w/ the GFCI. There were only two wires the box behind the outlet.
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:50 AM   #6
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GFCI not working.


ps what does the green light mean?
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Old 08-01-2011, 09:57 AM   #7
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No, the previous one only had the two, black on line and white on load, and mine I did both on line, (due to my lack of experience), plus ground, the other outlets must be in a series w/ the GFCI. There were only two wires the box behind the outlet.
Incorrect wiring and won't work....
When you say two wires can I assume you mean two cables? A cable has a black, white, and ground in a sheathing.
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:20 AM   #8
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Incorrect wiring and won't work....
When you say two wires can I assume you mean two cables? A cable has a black, white, and ground in a sheathing.
two wires, white and black, and I put in a ground wire. So what do I do? Do I need a gfci??
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:23 AM   #9
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ps what does the green light mean?
If it's a Leviton GFCI the green light means good to go.
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:30 AM   #10
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In a Kitchen near the sink, yes you need a gcfi protected circuit. Just because the box was replaced, and who knows what the previous home owner did, I would say that some rewiring of the Kitchen & Bath are in order.
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:44 AM   #11
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two wires, white and black, and I put in a ground wire. So what do I do? Do I need a gfci??
One pair of wires (a white and black) from the same cable will be hot, these two would go to the Line side. Gold screw gets the black, silver screw gets the white, ground to green.
You can figure this out just by trial and error. At the GFCI, connect one pair to the Line, plug in something like a radio, and turn on the breaker. If it works, fine, if not turn off the breaker and connect the other pair.
Once you get the Line side figured out, connect the remaining two wires to the load side of the GFCI.
Give us an update..
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:46 AM   #12
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One pair of wires (a white and black) from the same cable will be hot, these two would go to the Line side. Gold screw gets the black, silver screw gets the white, ground to green.
You can figure this out just by trial and error. At the GFCI, connect one pair to the Line, plug in something like a radio, and turn on the breaker. If it works, fine, if not turn off the breaker and connect the other pair.
Once you get the Line side figured out, connect the remaining two wires to the load side of the GFCI.
Give us an update..
I don't think you are understanding me. The junction box behind the outlet only has two wires coming into it. Not two cables. One black wire and one white wire. I added the ground wire connected to the back of the box myself, because the wiring in the home predates the romex, 3 wire cables. It is all two wire bx which has been set up so the box itself grounds.

I have it set up now the way you are reccomending to test a radio, and it is not working. ground, line hot and line neutral. The plug lights up green so there is obviously current, and everything that wasnt working before at the other outlets is now working, but not plug itself.

Do I splice in another wire right off the black and white I have already to feed the load terminal? That seems like it wouldn't do anything, but yall know better than me haha.

Its weird the green light is on then, that would indicate that everything is working, but the plug itself isnt working! It is a levitron outlet.
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:49 AM   #13
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GFCI not working.


Make sure the reset button is pushed all the way in.
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:50 AM   #14
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You can use a GFCI without a ground. It is possible, that you have created a "bootlegged" ground, and that the system needs to be looked at before proceeding any further. You really need to stop messing with the one outlet, and go through and double check the circuits in the house. If not sure you can do, hire an electrician.

Most likely the GFCI was installed, due to the "Home Inspector" stated they needed one, even though the home predates those protectors. Even with the panel upgrade, the home would not qualify for one, unless you wanted the outlet to have three prong capability, but it is still an ungrounded circuit.
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:06 PM   #15
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I read back through all the postings:
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No, the previous one only had the two, black on line and white on load, and mine I did both on line,
Quote:
and the other plugs on the circuit are now working,
I suspect what happened is when your wife was cooking lunch the breaker tripped. In replacing the GFCI you reset the breaker so now the other receptacles started working.
Since you only have a black and white wire in this box connected to the GFCI that says it is the end of the run for that circuit.
You may need a voltmeter. If the green light is on, I'd think the GFCI would have power. When you turn off the breaker, the green light does go off along with the other receptacles going dead - correct?

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