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Thread: Questions about outlet recently installed

  1. #1
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    Default Questions about outlet recently installed

    Through last year I ran my show (last year was about 6,000 pixels, mixture of 5v and 12v, running at 40%) on a shared 15AMP circuit in my garage. Based on my Kill-a-watt, I was peaking at around 12AMPS, but even then very rarely. I am adding more to my show this year, was having a kitchen reno done, and had room on my existing panel so I asked my electrician to run a dedicated 20AMP line to my garage. This is what he installed:

    outlet.jpg

    First of all - while the siding implies that it is outside - is is actually in a garge. House was built with a carport, which was later converted into a garage. So by all standards that I am aware of, it is now "inside" even though it is on a wall of siding. Hence the type of box and piping should be appropriate.

    Now I posted this pic to one of the FB pages just for fun - but was met with various responses implying that what was installed was wrong or going to cause me issues. Now I don't know much about electricty, so all I have to rely on is the trust in my electrician (who is also a town electrical inspector).

    My main concern is the claim people have made that having two GFI outlets on the same circuit increase the chances of false trips. Now my own google searching seems to say that having two is overkill, but otherwise won't cause any harm.

    So - is there anything for me to worry about as far as false trips? Does just using one of the outlets mitigate that risk (if there is an actual risk)? Anything I should do or ask an electrican to do differently?

    Thanks,

    Brian
    Last edited by brianweb; 05-10-2018 at 09:10 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    I am no electrician but have done a fair amount of electrical work with guidance from a licensed electrician so this is not gospel nor does it intend to know what the specific electrical codes are for your area. First, those are 15 amp GFCI outlets, not 20 amp. Seems to me that should be changed so the outlets aren't the fuse in the system. Not fully sure on the false tripping but it depends to some degree on how the two outlets are wired together. If one is wired direct to the feed cable (line) and the other is wired to the first outlet (load), I think there'd be issues. In effect you would have two GFCI outlets in series. I'd be surprised if a qualified electrician would wire it this way. Both should be wire directly to the feed cable (line) to work properly or replace one with a regular outlet and attach it to the load side of the GFCI outlet.
    Since these outlets are in a garage, they do require a GFCI outlet by code.
    Ed
    Happily retired

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    1. Start at the fuse panel. What size breaker is there, 15 or 20?
    2. If you see a 20a breaker, did they run 12 gauge wire all the way to the outlet in the garage? If not, then THAT is a problem. The breaker and wire gauge need to match. 15A= 14 gauge, 20A=12 gauge.
    3. No, you should not double up GFCIs. Everything downstream from the first GFCI is protected from the first one.
    4. The GFCI should match the breaker in terms of capacity, 15 or 20.
    5. All this assumes that item #2 is correct.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    1) 20AMP
    2) Not sure - I presume I open up the outlet cover and see if I can spot markings on the wire or what color romex it is?

    Quote Originally Posted by ukewarrior View Post
    1. Start at the fuse panel. What size breaker is there, 15 or 20?
    2. If you see a 20a breaker, did they run 12 gauge wire all the way to the outlet in the garage? If not, then THAT is a problem. The breaker and wire gauge need to match. 15A= 14 gauge, 20A=12 gauge.
    3. No, you should not double up GFCIs. Everything downstream from the first GFCI is protected from the first one.
    4. The GFCI should match the breaker in terms of capacity, 15 or 20.
    5. All this assumes that item #2 is correct.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    Quote Originally Posted by brianweb View Post
    2) Not sure - I presume I open up the outlet cover and see if I can spot markings on the wire or what color romex it is?
    Typically 15A (14Ga) is white and 20A (12Ga) is Yellow

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    The electrician may not have wired the GFIs in series, I would bet he didn't. An inspector may call a garage a damp location, it is a bit subjective despite NEC wording.

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  8. #7
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    Quote Originally Posted by davros View Post
    The electrician may not have wired the GFIs in series, I would bet he didn't. An inspector may call a garage a damp location, it is a bit subjective despite NEC wording.
    When using the test buttons, they trip independent of each other - does that indicate anything?

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    Only that you got charged double for GFCI's. Every outlet needs to be protected, but not every one must be a GFCI. Would have probably been easier and cheaper to use a GFCI breaker..........

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    Quote Originally Posted by brianweb View Post
    When using the test buttons, they trip independent of each other - does that indicate anything?
    Yes, that is what you want. In my show I have a panel board of 15 GFCI outlets, feed with 5 power cords. They are wired in parallel which is what you want. This way, when one trips, the others do not. I have my display broken up in "power feeds" so when a GFCI trips, I know where to start looking for issues.
    The way yours are set up is what you need.

    GFCI bank_a.jpg
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  11. #10
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    Default Re: Questions about outlet recently installed

    Quote Originally Posted by AuburnLights View Post
    Typically 15A (14Ga) is white and 20A (12Ga) is Yellow
    If that is Romex inside that conduit. If the electrician ran THHN (more likely inside EMT), then the size is printed repeatedly on the wire itself.
    Live, Laugh, Love.

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