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Old 05-12-2016, 01:06 AM   #1
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GFCI Pigtail


Hi,
I'm replacing a GFCI outlet in my bathroom and the existing setup looks similar to this (link to follow)
Here are the instructions for the GFCI outlet I am installing: (link to follow)
The Levitron instructions suggest having two cables going into the line is a bad thing. But based on my first link I think I should be good. Interestingly the Levitron switch also has two push in sockets on the Line side so its almost implying its fine, you should just consult an electrician.
Anyway I just wanted to get your thoughts before I replaced like for like. Any dangers with doing so?

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Old 05-12-2016, 05:39 AM   #2
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


Assuming the 2 cables are power in from the source and power out to another device. Both cables on the line side does not protect the downstream device; which is fine if that is what you want. Example, the overhead lights do not need to be GFCI.

putting the cable to the downstream device on the load side provides GFCI to the other device. Example, a light over the shower that the manufacturer says requires GFCI.

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Old 05-13-2016, 12:09 AM   #3
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


OK sounds good. As my new GFCI has 2 push in connectors for the line can I remove the pig tail and just use these instead?
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Old 05-13-2016, 12:10 AM   #4
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


Here is a link to the instructions:
https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=...22129774,d.amc
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Old 05-13-2016, 01:48 AM   #5
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


It is interesting that rgniles wrote: -
Quote:
Originally Posted by rjniles View Post
the overhead lights do not need to be GFCI.
This used to be the case here in Australia - only socket outlets which could be "used" by the home owner needed protection, via RCDs or RCBOs - as they are called here. (Residual Current Device/Residual Current Breaker with Overcurrent)

However, around 2010, three inexperienced ceiling insulation installers were electrocuted when they nailed reflective insulation in ceilings but, in each case, the nails went through TPS (NM/Romex) cables.
Since then, RCDs/RCBOs ARE required here on all new lighting circuit installations or when an electrician "modifies" a lighting circuit.

(In some of our States, I understand that the installation of such devices on lighting circuits is now required before any house may be sold.)
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Old 05-13-2016, 02:14 PM   #6
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


Be sure to check that the wires are inserted into the correct places. The first time I installed new GFCI outlets I assumed that the wires go in the exact place as the old ones, only to find out that the new outlet has them switched around.
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Old 05-13-2016, 03:38 PM   #7
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


Quote:
Originally Posted by FrodoOne View Post
It is interesting that rgniles wrote: -

This used to be the case here in Australia - only socket outlets which could be "used" by the home owner needed protection, via RCDs or RCBOs - as they are called here. (Residual Current Device/Residual Current Breaker with Overcurrent)

However, around 2010, three inexperienced ceiling insulation installers were electrocuted when they nailed reflective insulation in ceilings but, in each case, the nails went through TPS (NM/Romex) cables.
Since then, RCDs/RCBOs ARE required here on all new lighting circuit installations or when an electrician "modifies" a lighting circuit.

(In some of our States, I understand that the installation of such devices on lighting circuits is now required before any house may be sold.)
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Old 05-14-2016, 07:21 AM   #8
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Re: GFCI Pigtail


It is your choice whether to have both the feed and the continuation go into the line or to have the feed go into the line and the continuation go into the load. Reasons for doing it each way are stated previously.

With rare exceptions, if two wires want to go under one screw then attach a pigtail (short length) to the screw and wire nut together the other end of the pigtail and the two other wires in question.

Avoid using push in holes to make connections unless a screw clamp is used to hold the wires in the holes.

If the hot wires are connected directly to each other (with a pigtail to the GFCI or other device) then the neutrals must be connected up the same way.

In some cities (not in the U.S.) wire nuts and/or pigtails count towards box fill and box volume requirements in which case two screws for the same thing (e.g. hot line) on a receptacle unit come in handy to avoid pigtailing. Meanwhile pigtailing usually makes it easier to push the receptacle unit back into the box since there are fewer wires attached to the receptacle.

As far as "suggesting that two cables going into the line are a bad thing" together with finding two terminals for each of line hot and line neutral on the receptacle unit, I would ignore just that suggestion unless, prior to installing the receptacle, I found a reason for that, either within the instructions, within this thread, or from other sources such as word of mouth or via Google.

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Last edited by AllanJ; 05-14-2016 at 07:39 AM.
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