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Old 08-25-2010, 01:06 AM   #1
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


Hi everyone,

I have an outlet in my kitchen which has a dedicated hot for the top plug and a dedicated hot for the bottom plug. There's a common neutal. When I replaced the outlet (with non GFCI), I quickly learned that I needed to rip off the tab on the hot side of the outlet.

My question is, will I be able to do the same thing if I get a GFCI outlet? Otherwise, I'm thinking my best course of action is to not use one of the hot wires and just keep it's respective fuse out.

Let me know!

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Old 08-25-2010, 04:16 AM   #2
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


No. Kitchen receptacles can't be split that way.(gfi)
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Old 08-25-2010, 11:18 AM   #3
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


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Originally Posted by bravoxena View Post
Hi everyone,

I have an outlet in my kitchen which has a dedicated hot for the top plug and a dedicated hot for the bottom plug. There's a common neutal. When I replaced the outlet (with non GFCI), I quickly learned that I needed to rip off the tab on the hot side of the outlet.

My question is, will I be able to do the same thing if I get a GFCI outlet? Otherwise, I'm thinking my best course of action is to not use one of the hot wires and just keep it's respective fuse out.

Let me know!
You can't do that with one GFCI receptacle. However, if you have several receptacles on the circuit, you can install two GFCI receptacles at the beginning (one for each hot leg) and split the top and bottom halves of the rest of the receptacles downstream from them. If you do this, you must also separate the top and bottom neutrals at each receptacle, not just the hots. This would probably require running new wire, which may be impractical.
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Old 08-25-2010, 01:25 PM   #4
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


Thanks for the input.

If I go ahead and get a GFCI, I'll probably just use one of the hots and ignore the other.
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Old 08-26-2010, 09:31 AM   #5
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


You can buy a 2 pole gfi breaker and keep the regular split receptacle and have the gfi protection at the same time. You would just have to go to the panel to reset instead of hitting the button on the receptacle
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:19 PM   #6
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


First receptacle, both halves fed by just red and white. Second receptacle, both halves fed by just black and white. Third receptacle, both halves fed by just red and white. Each box has its own GFCI receptacle unit; load terminals are not used on any of the GFCI units.

Optional alternative; very last receptacle on the line is an ordinary receptacle. At second to last receptacle black and white continuing to last are fed by load terminals of second to last receptacle that is a GFCI unit. Red continuing to last receptacle is taped and curled up and not connected. No conductor attached to the load side of a GFCI is tied to any conductor attached to the line side of a GFCI. Neutral accompanying the hot connected to the load side must also be connected to the load side.
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Last edited by AllanJ; 08-26-2010 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 08-26-2010, 02:04 PM   #7
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


Sounds like the Canadian kitchen code. You can not just use one of the hots. The receptacle must remain split. The only code compliant way to make this work is a GFCI double pole 15 amp breaker(very expensive).
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Old 08-26-2010, 05:51 PM   #8
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Want to put a GFCI on an outlet with separate hot for top/bottom plugs


I have a split in my kitchen, it's not near water so I just skipped the GFCI. I think I recall reading something about not needing a GFCI for a counter that is not part of the sink counter. I may be wrong on this though. If I could easily do it, I'd add one, but yeah, don't feel like spending 300 bucks on a GFCI breaker especially when I plan to change out the panel in the near future. If it was a real safety hazard I'd cough up the money, but it's not really a wet area so it's not any different then a non GFCI in a bedroom.

I don't get why they don't make split GFCIs though. Just don't have the "load" side on those ones, make them for dedicated circuits only.

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