How to add a gfci and surge protector to pool pump line?


Trying to add a surge protector at a sub panel by pool. The 240 circuit runs from the main load panel on side of house to sub panel by pool - red, black and green only - to a disconnect and the pump. The surge protector (Intermatic PS3000) has two black and one white wire only. No other wires. I was planning to connect the two black wires to the red and the black from the 240 circuit at the disconnect, but am stumped with where to attach the third wire.

I am adding a whole house surge protector, but also one at the pump for extra protection because the variable speed pump has an on board electronic unit that is more sensitive and according to many reviews, can be troublesome. Kind of like adding a surge protector next to electronics inside.

I understand that at the main load center the white/neutral would go to the ground/neutral bus bar, but that according to code, at a sub panel, it should go to a neutral bus that is isolated from the ground bus. Otherwise, as I...

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I have an in ground swimming pool. There is an outdoor sub panel with a 20amp GFCI breaker is connected to the pump. Today we had a bad rain storm...water coming down cats and dogs in every direction.

After the storm, I noticed my pool pump wasn't working. The breaker had tripped. I tried to turn it on, and it went off immediately.

So, I swapped out the breaker and the same thing it's not the breaker. Tomorrow, I am going to disconnect and wirenut the wires from the pump (disconnect the pump). If the breaker doesn't trip after that I will conclude there is a short in the wires running through the conduit...right?

Because it will be a pain to pull the wires and replace....which I am ok to run (temporarily, just to make sure it will work) the wires directly from the panel to the pump without putting them in the conduit right away. When I say "not right away" I mean long enough to make sure the breaker doesn't trip. If it doesn't trip then I would...

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Troubleshoot GFCI

Resource: GFCI will not reset
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GFCI manuals

Resource: Pass and Seymour Combo-GFCI manual
Leviton Combo-GFCI manual
Lutron GFCI outlet manual
GFCI pilot light manual
Leviton GFCI-related manuals
Installing and testing GFCI
Arc Fault circuit breaker
AFCI-GFCI circuit breaker installation and troubleshoot/ pdf
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What is GFCI?
Ground fault outlet detects grounded circuit that can potentially electrocute you.
For example:. You plug-in extension cord. Then use power tool while standing in water. Or wet grass. Electricity wants to flow to ground through easiest path. Since you are standing on wet ground, electricity can jump from power tool and race through your body to ground.
This will kill instantly.
GFCI instantly detects open circuit, and cuts power so electricity is...
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I would like a gfci outlet near the variable speed pool pump. Looking at the line coming in, it looks to be two hot wires plus a neutral. Is it possible to add a gfci off of that? All the non commercial gfci receptacles I see require hot and neutral.

If there's truly two hot's and a neutral, it's probably 220-240 volts.

So, you'd be better served in having a GFCI circuit breaker installed directly in the power panel for your house.

If you are talking about adding a GFCI outlet for powering something else, I wouldn't tap the line going to the pump. You should have a dedicated line run separately.

My mistake, I meant two hots and a ground, not neutral.

Look at the I'd plate on the pump motor-
Does it say 220v? Then that line is a 220v circuit. And it's dedicated to the pump motor- enough said?

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Determine the location for your pump. Where you locate the pump will determine what plumbing supplies you will need. Most pumps will use a 1-1/4" pipe. In the most basic installation, you will need an adaptor from the skimmer unit to the 1-1/4" PVC pipe. You will then need a 90 degree fitting to screw into the pump. You will also need an adaptor to fit the outlet port on your pump which will connect to the 1-1/4" pipe. At the pool inlet you will need a second 90 degree fitting. You will also need two pieces of PVC pipe to fit between each of these fittings. If you are positioning the pump further away from the pool, you will need additional fittings and pipe.

Install an inlet pipe. Your pool will have a skimmer device which includes a basket for preventing debris such as leaves from entering your pump and filter. Install a pipe from the base of the skimmer to the inlet side of the pump. On most units this pipe will feed directly into a second skimmer basket mounted on the...

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Turn off the power to the circuit you are working on from your main fuse or breaker box. Unscrew the cover plate with a flat-head or Phillips screwdriver.


Identify how many cables or wires you have in your electrical box.

You should have no more than 4 loose wires or 2 cables with a total of 6 wires between them. Grounding wires are not included in this total.

Contact a qualified electrician to complete the work if you have identified more than 4 loose wires or more than 2 cables (grounding wires not included.


Strip the wires with wire strippers. Connect the white "line" wire to the silver (white) terminal and connect the black "line" wire to the brass "hot" terminal.


Attach any ground wires to the green grounding screws. Needle-nose pliers may be needed to connect the wires.


Tuck the wires into the box, ensuring the grounding wire does not touch the other 2 wires.


Install the...

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You may know in what situations the NEC requires you to install a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI), but do you know how it works? A GFCI is specifically designed to protect people against electric shock from an electrical system, and it monitors the imbalance of current between the ungrounded (hot) and grounded (neutral) conductor of a given circuit. Don't let the name confuse you — these devices will operate on a circuit that does not have an equipment-grounding conductor.

With the exception of small amounts of leakage, the current returning to the power supply in a typical 2-wire circuit will be equal to the current leaving the power supply. If the difference between the current leaving and returning through the current transformer of the GFCI exceeds 5mA, the solid-state circuitry opens the switching contacts and de-energizes the circuit.

However, a GFCI doesn't give you a license to be careless. Severe electric shock or death can occur if you touch...

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You should probably have both?

A surge protector prevents a line blowout or lightening strike from frying everything downstream connected to it (on your end of the lightening strike or blowout).

A GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) will trip if there is any stray current between your electrical mains and the ground. What this does is that if a wire gets severed in your tank, or a pump starts heavily leaking electricity, this will actually catch the electricity going into the ground plug from something else in the circuit, and will turn itself off (and presumably everything upstream of it). It's like an auto-off switch for a dangerous upstream leaking of electricity.

It's not the same as a grounding probe, but it will use the default grounding from something in your tank (your main pump, a skimmer pump, lights, etc) and when there is a connection between the main AC plugs (standard left right plugs on a plug) and that ground somewhere in your system, it...

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Service Panel Upgrades

Your electrical panel is the heart of your home's electrical system, directing and monitoring the flow of electricity throughout your home. Having an electrical panel that is safe and efficient is of the utmost importance.

Old fashioned fuse panels use outdated technology, and were built to much lower safety standards than modern breaker panels. Having to replace fuses after a fault condition is not only inconvenient but also dangerous. It exposes you to the live electrical parts of your service panel, which if contacted could cause a fatal shock. It also leaves circuits vulnerable to "over fusing", seen far too often, which can cause wires to heat up and start electrical fires.

Unlike fuse panels, modern breaker panels facilitate the use of...

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I want to add a gfci and surge protector to the 240v circuit for my pool pump. The 12 guage power wires (red and black) and ground (green) run from the corner of yard directly to the main breaker panel on the house, to a thin 20 amp double pole breaker.

I would like to add a small ‘sub panel’ in the corner and was figuring I would need a 20 amp double pole gfci breaker and a 20 amp double pole breaker for the surge protector. I would assume I hook the red wire to one feed and the black to the other, the green to the ground bus, snap in the gfci and run the red and black and ground to the 240v pump.

What do I do with the white neutrals from the gfci and surge protector? I am guessing they to the ground bus since the ground runs straight back to the main panel, but I would rather be sure than BBQ something, maybe myself.

Assuming that is good, I would also like to add another single pole 20 amp breaker to the sub-panel for a 110 outlet. Can I run the neutral wire...

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Hey again Cvillian21,

Are you doing a lot of grades to home or did you just buy a new house? Your sump pump should be plugged into a GFCI outlet. Just like the outlets by your kitchen sink. A surge protector would protect your pump from incoming surges and the GFCI will stop the power if the outlet gets wet. All you need is the GFCI outlet.

The back up pump system is worth it. How often does your existing pump run (Once a day, or once a week) Does your house lose power often during storms or does lose power often for no reason? Is your basement finished? If you answered yes to those last two questions I would defiantly make the investment. The back up pump kicks in when the water rises above the switch of you main pump. So if you are getting too much water it will help out your main pump and if the power goes out the backup pump will run off of a battery. Hope this...

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If the house is not that old, there should be wiring in-place that contains the 'hot', 'neutral', and a 3rd ground wire. If the 3rd ground wire is present, then it would be possible to change out some of the 2-prong outlets for 3-pronged ones. It would also be possible to install GFCIs. If you are not comfortable looking for yourself to see if the ground wires are present, then hire an electrician or an electrical handyman (with permission from the landlord) to change out a couple of outlets at strategic places around the house. It won't cost that much to change out a few outlets. If the house is very old and only has 2-wire systems, then you're s.o.l. -- it will require a major re-wiring and I'm sure your landlord doesn't want to 'mess' with that....

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Since 1971, the NEC has expanded the requirements for ground-fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) to protect anyone who plugs into an electrical system. Initially, it was only required for temporary wiring at construction sites and in dwelling unit bathrooms, but in recent years the Code requirements for GFCI protection have expanded to include many other areas, including commercial occupancies, fountains and swimming pools, and temporary installations, to name a few. (For a complete list of 2002 NEC references, see the sidebar below)

Commercial occupancies. Per 210.8, you must install GFCI protection for all 15A and 20A, 125V receptacles located in bathrooms, rooftops, and kitchens in commercial/industrial facilities. However, GFCI protection is not required for receptacles installed outside a commercial or industrial occupancy.

In addition, 210.63 requires you to install a 15A or 20A, 125V receptacle outlet within 25 ft of heating, air conditioning,...

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Commonly Asked Questions Regarding GFCI's

What is a ground fault?
Normally, line current to an electrically-operated device flows to the device through the hot conductor and returns from the device through the neutral conductor. It is common for the hot current to be slightly greater than the neutral current, with the difference being referred to as leakage current to ground. If the leakage becomes large enough to present a shock hazard to a user of the device it is described as a ground fault. A ground falult can result from a defective device, such as a metal case tool with deteriorated insulation, or misuse, such as dropping the device into water.

What is a GFCI and how does it work?
The Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter's (GFCI's) circuitry senses an imbalance between the hot and neutral circuits (ie the electrical current going through the tool to the operator and to the ground). If the difference between the circuits exceeds a pre-determined level, the GFCI...

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