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Electrical Safety Ground Fault protection

3558 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  johnday
Every outdoor outlet should be on a ground fault protected circuit breaker. Basement outlets, and any outlet near a kitchen or bathroom sink should also be protected.

A ground fault happens whenever electricity escapes the confines of the wiring in an appliance, light fixture, or power tool and takes a shortcut to the ground. When that short cut is through a human, the results can be deadly. About 200 people in the U.S. alone die of ground faults each year, accounting for two-thirds of all electrocutions occurring in homes.

To prevent such accidents, Charles Dalziel, a professor of electrical engineering at the University of California, invented the ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI), in 1961.

Before Home depot started selling commercially available Ground Fault Protected extension cords, I made a couple of my own. It changes a single outlet extension cord into a duplex ground fault protected one. Really handy for using more than one tool or for playing the radio while working with electricity. I also use one with my outdoor lighting decorations etc.

can you tell the difference between mine and the commercially available one?

That's right... mine has been used a lot more. :rolleyes:


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Can you tell the difference between mine and the commercially available one?
And your has that nice "open face", air cooled design !

I know the problem. I just rewired a garage last year using those same galvanized steel 4x2 "handy boxes". They look real nice in a garage with the matching galvanized steel covers !

Of course I was done, I found out that GFCI are now required on all circuits in a garage. I have 2 circuit (first lights, then other everything else) so I spliced in 2 GFCI outlets (every outlet after a GFCI is protected by that GFCI !). The problem is finding those nice steel covers with a "Decora" cutout.

They do make them, but I can't seem to find them. (Loomis, do you know a source ?)

Or you could just go to a 4x4 steel box and then use a cover like a Raco 808c.

Professionals, what is you opinion ?
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Those 5 dollar test plugs with the LED lights that detect faulty outlet wiring are a great and fast way to test that everything is good to go.

And if your going to "play" at being an electrician, spend the $10-$20 and get your self a "ringer" (a pen like device that rings/blinks if a wire or outlet is hot). I can be a life saver !
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