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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I installed some basement outlets, more than twenty years ago. Just recently I installed a outside outlet, on that same circuit. I realize they all need to be on a GFCI circuit so I went to Home Depot and purchased the Square D, GFCI breaker below. The installation seems to be pretty straight forward and all the of the outlets are grounded, all the way back to the breaker box. When I called the electrician to get the breaker installed, he said there may be some problems we will run into. So my question is, what kind of problems is he expecting?

Installation instructions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I couldn't imagine what the "problems" would be, but I'm not an electrician.
Can you not change out the breaker?

As an aside for when the pros get here, if this is all on one circuit, can't just the first box(outlet) in the line have Gfci ?
Wouldn't that cover everything down stream?
Yes I have installed many regular/no GFCI breakers. But I have not installed a GFCI breaker and that is why I consulted an electrician. If you checked the instructions, switching the two is not that simple. The circuit neutral must run through the breaker
There is no first outlet. I wire the circuit to a junction box, then divided the circuit to different areas of the basement. That is why I thought the GFCI breaker would be the way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
#1 thought is are you sure you got the correct style square D breaker? Is your panel style QO, not Homeline? You do have a QO breaker if that is your panel style.
Are there any 3 way switches on this circuit? If so, the lights may be using a neutral from another circuit. You know if so since you said that you installed it.
If the receptacles are daisy chained, a single GFCI receptacle would be easier and 1/2 to he cost.
This is a ID tag on the door. Will a QO door be on a Homeline box?
Handwriting Font Art Paper Paper product

The QO on the tag is why I got the QO breaker. That could be what the electrician is thinking.
The only switch in the circuit is to a ceiling fan, it's not a 3-way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The only different types of QO is with a pigtail wire or not (plug-in neutral). With pigtail like you pictured as having purchased works on either type panel. Plug-in neutral panels are apx. in the last 8 years and have a full length neutral bar against the breakers.
I check the QO and Homeline box dimensions and found the two boxes are a big difference. I believe it’s very reasonable to believe the QO cover is on a QO box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I thank everyone for their opinion and like I said in another post, I know what is involved in replacing the breaker. The instructions are very simple to understand and I’m sure I could replace the break. The question is in the OP, what did the electrician mean, there could be a problem after the install? The thread has given me a few things to check, but no real problems that would come up after the installation.
I always turn off the main breaker, any time I work within the breaker panel. Turning off the main breaker, is the best advice in the thread and should be the first thing everyone does.
Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
The 20 year old basement outlets may have existing ground faults that will become apparent when the breaker supplying them is changed to one that will detect them.
If thats the case, how does one trace down the outlet that has a "existing ground fault"? Could I used a plug-in outlet tester to find a ground fault? Would voltage be detected at the outlet electrical box?
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Electricians don't like it when you buy parts for them. Least, they cannot offer a warranty on the part, making things awkward if the part fails.

The issue with upgrading a circuit to GFCI is it will detect a variety of things:

  • Multi-wire branch circuits
  • Hard-wired appliances with a ground fault
  • Plug-in appliances with a ground fault
  • Any existing wiring faults such as
  • Any loads attached to both this hot and another circuit's neutral, or vice versa
  • any smart switches ditto ditto
  • any pre-existing contact between neutral and ground

So then you're off on a bug hunt. Also

- the requirement to identify all outlets on the circuit and put "GFCI Protected" labeling on them in a manner which is not hand-written

If you know where the first receptacle in the circuit is, you can just as easily install a GFCI receptacle at that location and have effectively the same protection. And problems.
Thanks for your insight.
 
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