GFCI Won't Work - Electrical - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum


Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Electrical

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 09-20-2013, 04:32 PM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 6
Rewards Points: 10
Default

GFCI won't work


I have installed several GFCIs in my home but I ran into one where a GFCI won't work. When I connect the load wires (and I am certain I have them properly identified) the GFCI won't work and if I disconnect the load wires it works perfectly. What am I doing wrong?

Advertisement

Jbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2013, 06:42 PM   #2
Electrical Contractor
 
jbfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Newnan GA
Posts: 5,961
Rewards Points: 2,318
Default

GFCI won't work


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jbury View Post
I have installed several GFCIs in my home but I ran into one where a GFCI won't work. When I connect the load wires (and I am certain I have them properly identified) the GFCI won't work and if I disconnect the load wires it works perfectly. What am I doing wrong?
Check the load side to make sure something is not ground faulted.
The gfci may be doing it's job.

Advertisement

__________________
Yes I am a Pirate, 200 years too late. "Jimmy Buffett"
jbfan is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to jbfan For This Useful Post:
mpoulton (09-20-2013)
Old 09-20-2013, 11:42 PM   #3
Retired from the grind
 
gregzoll's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Midwest - Central Illinois
Posts: 14,412
Rewards Points: 2,486
Default

GFCI won't work


Is this GFCI downstream of another GFCI outlet, on that Branch Circuit? What is the Load wiring going to? Can you post a wiring diagram of how you have the circuit connected, and what is on the circuit? Also, Bath, basement, outside, Kitchen, Laundry that you are using this in.
__________________
Ren: Now listen, Cadet. I've got a job for you. See this button? Ren: Don't touch it! It's the History Eraser button, you fool! Stimpy: So what'll happen? Ren: That's just it. We don't know. Maybe something bad, maybe something good. I guess we'll never know, 'cause you're going to guard it. You won't touch it, will you?
gregzoll is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2013, 11:28 AM   #4
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 6
Rewards Points: 10
Default

GFCI won't work


Thanks,

I attempted to wire it in what appeared to be the start of a circuit in the master bedroom suite. The circuit has wall plugs and overhead lights but nothing special or heavy duty plugged in anywhere. I haven't a clue on how the circuit is wired except that when the load wires at this outlet were disconnected all the other outlets and switches were without power.
Jbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2013, 01:09 PM   #5
Retired from the grind
 
gregzoll's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Midwest - Central Illinois
Posts: 14,412
Rewards Points: 2,486
Default

GFCI won't work


Where are you located? You need to first figure out which wires are the incoming "Line" from the breaker panel, then the other set of wires, would be your "Load". That means using a Digital Multi-Meter, or a 120/240/480vAC tester, to find the hot & Neutral coming in.

From the sounds of it, I am guessing you are in Canada, since you are coming off the Master Bedroom circuit, for this GFCI, if it is for a Bath.
__________________
Ren: Now listen, Cadet. I've got a job for you. See this button? Ren: Don't touch it! It's the History Eraser button, you fool! Stimpy: So what'll happen? Ren: That's just it. We don't know. Maybe something bad, maybe something good. I guess we'll never know, 'cause you're going to guard it. You won't touch it, will you?
gregzoll is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2013, 02:00 PM   #6
Semi-Pro Electro-Geek
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 2,570
Rewards Points: 2,036
Default

GFCI won't work


Try measuring resistance from neutral to ground on the disconnected load wires. If there is continuity, then you have a neutral-to-ground fault somewhere which is causing the GFCI to trip. Then measure resistance from the disconnected load hot to ground. If it is anything other than infinite, then you have an actual ground fault which is tripping the GFCI.
__________________
I am a lawyer, but not your lawyer. And who cares anyways? We're here to talk construction. This is DIY advice, not legal advice.
mpoulton is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to mpoulton For This Useful Post:
Jbury (09-23-2013)
Old 09-21-2013, 05:34 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Saskatoon Sk. Canada
Posts: 422
Rewards Points: 256
Default

GFCI won't work


What exactly do you mean by "doesn't work"? Will it not respond.to the test button? Will it not reset? Will it not pass current to the load? Does it trip immediately? What are you using to test for power?

Last edited by daveb1; 09-21-2013 at 05:42 PM.
daveb1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-23-2013, 01:47 PM   #8
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 6
Rewards Points: 10
Default

GFCI won't work


What I mean the CFCI won't reset when I apply the power. Works fine when the lines are disconnected.
Jbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-23-2013, 01:51 PM   #9
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 6
Rewards Points: 10
Default

GFCI won't work


Well you must be a good lawyer because you gave something to try. Haven't done it but will try. I think the GFCI is already telling me have one so how do I find it.
Jbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-23-2013, 08:29 PM   #10
Semi-Pro Electro-Geek
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 2,570
Rewards Points: 2,036
Default

GFCI won't work


The first step will be to figure out what kind of fault it is: neutral-ground, or actual hot-ground fault. Once you know that, then you will know what to look for. If it is neutral-ground, then check all devices for either bootleg ground connections (hopefully not!), a ground wire touching a neutral terminal, or a neutral terminal touching a metal box. If it is leakage from hot to ground, then check for bad appliances or fixtures, buried cables, and anything else that could leak to ground without being a dead short.
__________________
I am a lawyer, but not your lawyer. And who cares anyways? We're here to talk construction. This is DIY advice, not legal advice.
mpoulton is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 07:25 AM   #11
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: PENNSYLVANIA
Posts: 2,258
Rewards Points: 1,044
Default

GFCI won't work


Ground fault on load side of wires, faulty equipment plugged in on load side, defective GFCI.
__________________
No Warranty Means- If it breaks in half you get to keep both halves.
COLDIRON is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 09:43 AM   #12
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: IL
Posts: 855
Rewards Points: 726
Default

GFCI won't work


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jbury
What I mean the CFCI won't reset when I apply the power. Works fine when the lines are disconnected.
You need to be a little more precise describing the problem. Details matter here.

Are you saying the gfci works fine when the line side connections are made, load side connections are disconnected and power is live on the feeder breaker? Working fine means the test and reset button on the gfci work after a few trip reset cycles.

Then are you saying once you connect the load side lines the gfci outlet trips and cannot be reset?

If so you have a fault down stream from the gfci outlet. It can be any of: neutral and ground are wired together downstream ( a neutral fault), a leakage of some device or wire from hot to ground ( leaky refrigerator motor, some type of home appliance or consumer electronics device is leaky to ground, start unplugging things and see if it changes), a hard fault hot to ground or hot to neutral (would probably trip breaker not gfci).

Good luck, need to break the problem into smaller pieces and start ruling things out. Shouldn't be too difficult to narrow down to the offending case.
curiousB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 04:32 PM   #13
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 6
Rewards Points: 10
Default

GFCI won't work


Yes, the GFCI is fully functional operating with just the line attached and power on. The GFCI will trip and not reset when the load wires are connected. Thanks for the descriptions of the various types of ground fault. Those descriptions are very helpful. On an ordinary outlet, does it matter where the line and load neutrals are wired as it does on a GFCI?
Jbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2013, 08:14 PM   #14
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: IL
Posts: 855
Rewards Points: 726
Default

GFCI won't work


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jbury
On an ordinary outlet, does it matter where the line and load neutrals are wired as it does on a GFCI?
No. There is no load or line distinction on a regular duplex receptacle.
curiousB is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to curiousB For This Useful Post:
Jbury (09-24-2013)
Old 09-24-2013, 11:37 PM   #15
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 6
Rewards Points: 10
Default

GFCI won't work


Thanks, that what I assumed.

Advertisement

Jbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Another GFCI Question Jzone99 Electrical 5 09-16-2012 02:56 PM
GFCI special application--on demand for brief period highdeserthome Electrical 33 01-20-2012 12:19 PM
GFCI troubleshooting XwpisONOMA Electrical 20 11-13-2011 06:19 PM
GFCI circuit resets but does not work Alexlonebear Electrical 2 12-15-2010 10:20 AM
GFCI between porch receptacles Thurman Electrical 4 08-19-2009 01:40 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts