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  1. #1
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: GFI info from UL

    Interesting that they recommend replacement of the GFCI if it trips while doing its job, i.e., when a defective appliance causes a ground fault. I hate throwing things away for no good reason. Seems to me that if it still functions properly, if it trips and resets when tested, why not keep it?

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: GFCI info from UL

    Quote Originally Posted by John Arnold View Post
    Interesting that they recommend replacement of the GFCI if it trips while doing its job, i.e., when a defective appliance causes a ground fault.
    Not quite what they said, at least not what I read: (bold is mine)

    UL recommends that the GFCI be replaced by a qualified electrician if:
    • The lamp or other appliance plugged into the GFCI remains "ON" when the "Test" button is pushed.
    • The GFCI does not reset when the "Reset" button is pushed.
    • The GFCI performs its intended function, but trips repeatedly during normal use. (This may indicate either a faulty appliance or a compromised GFCI. In either case, replacement of the GFCI is recommended and the appliance should be checked for proper operation prior to reuse.)
    Did I miss something else in that letter?

    Matt, thanks for posting that link.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  4. #4
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    Default Re: GFI info from UL

    Jerry - You're right in that I kind of overlooked that "repeatedly during normal use", but they still seem to be saying the same thing, which is that even if the GFCI is functioning properly, and the problem is with the appliance, they recommend replacing the GFCI.
    Now, does using the test button once a month constitute tripping "repeatedly"?

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  5. #5
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    Default Re: GFCI info from UL

    Quote Originally Posted by John Arnold View Post
    Jerry - You're right in that I kind of overlooked that "repeatedly during normal use", but they still seem to be saying the same thing, which is that even if the GFCI is functioning properly, and the problem is with the appliance, they recommend replacing the GFCI.
    Only when it "trips repeatedly during normal use. (This may indicate either a faulty appliance or a compromised GFCI. In either case, replacement of the GFCI is recommended and the appliance should be checked for proper operation prior to reuse.)", if the appliance has a problem and trips the GFCI, the GFCI is reset, and does not trip "repeatedly" in that "normal use" of the GFCI, then they are not recommending it be replaced.

    Tripping repeatedly could indicate a problem with the GFCI, could cause a problem with the GFCI, could indicate a problem with the appliance ... those could and/or issues, occurring singly or together, and rather than take chances, they are saying to replace the GFCI and address the appliance.

    Now, does using the test button once a month constitute tripping "repeatedly"?
    (see bold below)

    The GFCI performs its intended function, but trips repeatedly during normal use. (This may indicate either a faulty appliance or a compromised GFCI. In either case, replacement of the GFCI is recommended and the appliance should be checked for proper operation prior to reuse.)

    "Testing" is not "normal use".

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  6. #6
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    Default Re: GFI info from UL

    I'm making an assumption about the reason for replacing the GFCI if it trips repeatedly during normal use due to a faulty appliance. My assumption is that UL is concerned that the GFCI may be damaged by the repeated tripping. (I know I was!) Hence, my question about testing. If testing is essentially doing the same thing that the faulty appliance is doing, then won't testing also damage the GFCI?

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

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