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Old 06-03-2010, 09:06 AM   #1
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


I have wired many GFCI outlets and breakers. I have a GFCI outlet that is the first on the circuit and there are only two regular outlets that are fed from this GFCI.
OCCASIONALLY---once out of five to seven times, the GFCI will trip when the undercounter lights, toaster, mixer, or portable fan are TURNED OFF
All wireing has been checked and the GFCI has been changed.
This GFCI is in a kitchen close to sink and stove and I am wondering if a GFCI Breaker would work any different. I dought that it would but I feel it necessary to have these outlets protected.

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Old 06-03-2010, 09:53 AM   #2
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


Line spikes maybe. Try moving the breaker supplying that circuit up or down one slot in the panel. This should move it to the other leg of the service.

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Old 06-03-2010, 10:48 AM   #3
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


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OCCASIONALLY---once out of five to seven times, the GFCI will trip when the undercounter lights, toaster, mixer, or portable fan are TURNED OFF
You could check if the leakage current in the ground lead is close to the 5 mA limit; you'd need a milliammeter and a 10 mA or 50 mA fuse, to protect the meter or its internal costly fuse.
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:10 PM   #4
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


I think you will have to do some elimination. I assume most of the things listed remain plugged in all the time - yes? Since this only involves three outlets and happens fairly frequently, you should be able to have only one item plugged in at a time and then turn it on and off several times.
You said the toaster caused the GF to trip, is that when the toast cycle completed and the toast popped up?
With the exception of the toaster, all the other things would require someone touching it when turning it off.
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:37 PM   #5
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


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I think you will have to do some elimination. I assume most of the things listed remain plugged in all the time - yes? Since this only involves three outlets and happens fairly frequently, you should be able to have only one item plugged in at a time and then turn it on and off several times.
You said the toaster caused the GF to trip, is that when the toast cycle completed and the toast popped up?
With the exception of the toaster, all the other things would require someone touching it when turning it off.
No, no item is plugged in all the time. My new undercounter lights are activated by a wall switch in a double box. About every fifth or sixth time the lights are turned off with this switch, the outlet trips. It never trips by turning the individual lights off by the factory toggle switch installed in the fixture. The portable fan is totally insulated (plastic). Yes the toaster trips the outlet when it automatically cuts off.
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Old 06-04-2010, 07:05 AM   #6
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


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My new undercounter lights are activated by a wall switch in a double box. About every fifth or sixth time the lights are turned off with this switch, the outlet trips. It never trips by turning the individual lights off by the factory toggle switch installed in the fixture. The portable fan is totally insulated (plastic). Yes the toaster trips the outlet when it automatically cuts off.
Do I understand you correctly?
There are two down stream outlets that are connected to the Load terminals on the GFCI.
You have under counter lights that are plugged into one of the GF protected outlets and you are operating them with a wall switch?

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Old 06-04-2010, 08:19 AM   #7
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


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Do I understand you correctly?
There are two down stream outlets that are connected to the Load terminals on the GFCI.
You have under counter lights that are plugged into one of the GF protected outlets and you are operating them with a wall switch?
GFCI outlet is first from breaker box. Feed connects second outlet in double box where I have a switch, for lights and a receptical. Switch only controls lights. Other outlet is fed from this double box.
Sorry, I failed to mention that there is a microwave plugged into another outlet but the microwave has never tripped the GFCI. All recepticles have been replaced with new ones.
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Old 06-04-2010, 10:06 AM   #8
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


I'm confused. You mention boxes but that doesn't tell us much.
Your circuit should look like this.
Breaker------Line|GFCI Outlet|Load-----|Outlet|----|Outlet|
Neutral------Line|""""""""""""""""|Load-----|""""""""|----|""""""""|

You cannot pigtail and feed other things. All that should be on the Load side of the GFCI is outlets.
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Old 06-04-2010, 11:25 AM   #9
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


"I'm confused. You mention boxes but that doesn't tell us much."

I am not an electricial but I have always referred to the enclosure for a wall switch or an outlet as a "box"
Not trying to be smart----but I am referring to the enclosure that is mounted on the wall stud.
Should I be calling it something else?
I believe you have found the problem concerning "pigtail", but how should these undercounter lights be hooked up?
I have lived in this home for a short time and have found many electrical mistakes of which I am adressing.
THANKS for helping
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Old 06-04-2010, 05:25 PM   #10
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GFCI Receptical Trip?


Ah, so we may be getting close?
The "boxes" don't matter as much as how the "devices" (switches and outlets) are all hooked together. GFCI can be picky.
You can wire the lights in parallel in the first box with the line side of the GFCI but my guess is the the wires won't reach unless you redo everything.
As an experiment, you could pigtail the downstream outlets to the line side of the GFCI and not have anything connected to the GFCI load.

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