Is a GFCI receptacle device a circuit breaker? [duplicate]



Each type of device serves a distinctly separate protective purpose.


A circuit breaker detects overcurrent faults, it does not detect ground faults. A circuit breaker will stop your house catching fire when the wiring in the walls overheats from prolonged overcurrent, it wont stop you and your family being killed by electrocution.

A typical UK breaker protecting a 6A circuit might only trip out when the current reaches 30A. There are several ratings in the UK:

Type B trips between 3 and 5 time full load current; Type C trips between 5 and 10 times full load current; and Type D trips between 10 and 20 times full load current.

The reason for this is that some appliances have a high inrush current and you don't want lots of nuisance trips.

It is probably worth noting that breakers don't trip at a specific current, it depends on how long that current is sustained. A small overcurrent will take a long tome to heat wall wiring to...

0 0

GFCI (ground-fault circuit-interrupter) protection is required for many receptacles (outlets) throughout the house and outdoors. This protection can be provided either by a GFCI breaker or GFCI receptacles. There are advantages and disadvantages to each approach, depending on the installation. Also keep in mind that the local electrical code—the rules you must follow to pass electrical inspections—may have specific requirements about GFCI protection.

Protecting Circuits vs. Receptacles

GFCI circuit breakers are simple: You install one in the service panel (breaker box) and it adds GFCI protection to the entire circuit, including the wiring and all devices and appliances connected to the circuit. GFCI receptacles can be wired in two different ways to offer two different levels of protection. Single-location protection offers GFCI protection only at one receptacle. Multiple-location wiring protects the first GFCI receptacle and every receptacle downstream of it...

0 0

GFCI receptacle with red button for Test and black button for Reset

A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI), or Residual Current Device (RCD) is a circuit breaker. This device reduces the risk of electric shock. It shuts off an electric power circuit when it detects that current is flowing in a way it is not meant to, such as through water or a person. Electric shock may cause the heart to stop or cause burns. The device can also prevent some fires, for example, those caused when a live wire touches a metal conduit.

A GFCI device uses Kirchhoff's current law. This law states that everywhere on an electrical circuit, the current must be exactly the same as every other point on that same circuit. House wiring normally has a "hot leg" and a "neutral leg". The GFCI device watches the current "going out" on the hot leg and measures it against the current "coming back in" on the neutral. If there is a difference between the two, even as little as 4-5 milliamps, then that...

0 0
HOME SitemapInfo and Troubleshooting

There are often special looking electrical receptacles in bathrooms or kitchens that have "Test" and "Reset" buttons -- often black and red -- on them. Video. These are ground-fault circuit interrupters -- GFCIs or GFIs. Their purpose is to protect people from electrocution. They do not prevent shock altogether, only deadly shock. And they do not prevent overloads on the circuit. That is the job of a circuit breaker at the main panel. See my GFCI article. (What is the little light on some GFIs?)

Why Can't I Reset? Is GFCI Bad or Is There a Ground-Fault?
GFI Outlet Diagram -- Hooking Up
Is an Unknown GFCI the Cause of an Outage?
Finding a Tripped GFCI Receptacle
Confusing Terms: GFCI, GFI, Load, etc.

Bad GFCI or a Ground-Fault? -- Troubleshooting

Is a GFI tripping for a ground-fault? If you are pretty sure you need to troubleshoot a ground-fault itself, you may want to go to

Tripped GFI -- Why?


0 0

Electro-Forensic Engineers

As the case developed, it became necessary to educate the attorney on the difference between a GFI (actually a GFCI for Ground Fault Circuit Inter- rupter), which is applied to 120/240 V circuits, and a GFP (Ground Fault Pro- tection) system, which …

Electro-forensic engineering: an emerging profession

… the GFI was not connected, and the contractor defined the 480 V GFI as being sensitiveto 5 milliamperes As the case developed, it became necessary to educate the attorney on the difference between a GFI (actually a GFCI , or Ground Fault Circuit …

This paper briefly reviews various personnel protection devices also describes the basic working principle of conventional ground fault circuit interrupter ( GFCI ) or ground fault isolator ( GFI ), its disadvantages and ways to...

0 0

Originally Posted by


All GFCIs may be differential CBs, but not all differential CBs are GFCIs.
The term GFCI indicates specific current thresholds, 6ma for Class A.

Yes, correct. But more specifically:

There are potentially confusing terminologies for all of this stuff collectively called "Ground Fault" equipment here in North America but with other terms from different areas of the world.

In Europe and Asia, they use the term Residual Current Device (RCD) or Residual Current Circuit Breaker (RCCB). And RCD does not have the CB current sensing, just the differential.

In South America, Brazil in particular, some people call them Differential Residual (DR) or Differential Current (DI, because I = Current) circuit breakers. Weg, a large Brazillian supplier, has begun exporting their components here to the US in recent years and their DR breakers are showing up in catalogs and stores, then get misapplied by sales people who have no...

0 0

GFCI protection is a required safety measure for virtually all outlets close to water or in outdoor areas. The term stands for ground fault circuit interrupter, meaning it can detect an electrical fault (incorrect energy flow) and shut off power before an accident or injury occurs.

You can install a GFCI receptacle installed at an individual power outlet, or you can use a GFCI breaker in the electrical panel to have GFCI protection for all outlets powered by that breaker.

The choice between a GFCI breaker or a GFCI receptacle depends on your home’s electrical wiring, location of outlets that need protection, space available, and costs.

GFCI Receptacle vs. GFCI Breaker

The GFCI receptacle sits right inside an individual power outlet. You know those power outlets with the test and reset buttons? That’s the face plate of a GFCI receptacle. The receptacle itself is the electrical unit inside the wall. GFCI receptacles are a bit larger than standard...

0 0

A GFCI is a ground fault circuit interrupter. A ground fault circuit interrupter is an inexpensive electrical device that, if installed in household branch circuits, could prevent over two-thirds of the approximately 300 electrocutions still occurring each year in and around the home. Installation of the device could also prevent thousands of burn and electric shock injuries each year.

Figure 1 - GFCI receptacle and GFCI circuit breaker

The GFCI is designed to protect people from severe or fatal electric shocks Because a GFCI detects ground faults, it can also prevent some electrical fires and reduce the severity of others by interrupting the flow of electric current.

Figure 2 - Man with one hand in sink and other on electrical device

The Problem:

Have you ever experienced an electric shock? If you did, the shock probably happened because your hand or some other part of your body contacted a source of electrical current and your body provided a...

0 0

Does a 2 pole circuit breaker serve two circuits in the house?… read more


Heating & Air Conditioning Contractor

6 years college

1,836 satisfied customers

Lost power in house. No circuit breakers were tripped and one room still had electric. If I turn on anything with 240volts the apparatus(range) do not work but it restores power to lights and plugs. T… read more

Mike G.

Master Electrician

Vocational, Technical or Trade Scho

7,826 satisfied customers

I need assistance upgrading a circuit breaker to a sub panel. I have all the specs of everything just need to know if it will work. Have photos if needed. … read more

Mike G.

Master Electrician

Vocational, Technical or Trade Scho

7,826 satisfied customers

our power dims but no circuit breakers trip. Is it a going bad main breaker? … read more


Licensed Electrical Contractor



0 0
You first need to figure out what size the circuit is supposed to be!!! Does it need to be on a 20A, 50A, or none of the above?

Second of all, a GFCI is not a circuit breaker!!! There are so many misconceptions about GFCIs. THEY ARE NOT OVER CURRENT DEVICES. THEY ARE DESIGNED TO TRIP WHEN THERE IS A DIFFERENCE IN CURRENT FROM HOT TO NEUTRAL, AND NOT NECCESSARILY DESIGNED TO TRIP WHEN THERE IS A GROUND FAULT. A 20A GFCI is a rating of the size of the circuit it can go on, not an overcurrent rating because a GFCI is not an overcurrent device. GFCI PROTECTS PEOPLE, NOT EQUIPMENT.

I know why they supplied this circuit with a 50A breaker. It's because they're stupid.

Figure out how much amperage the pool pump is rated to draw, and then ask another question of how you should go about wiring it when you have that information. We'll help you get this pump wired...

0 0

GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, and these are normally found in the home in the form of circuit breakers, located in the home's breaker box. However, electrical sockets can also be GFCIs. Both types make electrical circuits automati

GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, and these are normally found in the home in the form of circuit breakers, located in the home's breaker box. However, electrical sockets can also be GFCIs. Both types make electrical circuits automatically switch off if there is a short or power surge somewhere in the circuit that it is connected to, consequently stopping the user from receiving an electric shock if they touch the outlet during the surge/short occurrence.

GFCI Circuit Breakers Amp Ratings

GFCI circuit breakers are each rated by the number of amps they will allow the circuit to which they are connected, to utilise at any one time. For instance, a 20 amp circuit breaker will only...

0 0


Determine the structure type. If circuits are installed in a space for use other than a dwelling unit, AFCI is not required (commercial and industrial spaces are not required to have AFCI protection). AFCI protection is required only in dwelling units (apartments, homes, manufactured homes, RVs and mobile homes).


Identify circuit destinations. All 120 volt / 15 or 20 amp branch circuits supplying outlets (includes both lighting outlets and receptacle outlets) in dwelling unit family rooms, dining rooms, living rooms, parlors, libraries, dens, bedrooms, sun rooms, recreation rooms, closets, hallways, or similar rooms or areas shall be protected by a listed arc fault circuit interrupter. This means that nearly every habitable space in new homes are required to have this protection.


Determine if an exemption applies. Most fire and smoke alarm systems are prohibited from being connected to GFCI or AFCI circuits. Absent from the list of...

0 0

A GFCI is a receptacle or circuit breaker and is used to increase safety in areas that are prone to the risk of electric shock. They will trip when current from the GFCI line side does not return through the neutral side. The GFCI measures the current from the line, through a load, and back to the neutral. This current needs to be the same. If current from the line does not return to the neutral (i.e. goes to ground instead), the GFCI will trip (power will be turned off coming out of the GFCI). It takes a mismatch of about 5 mA of current (5 milliamps or .005 A) to trip a GFCI.

GFCI receptacles can provide protection to standard receptacles connected to the load side of the GFCI.

BathroomsGarages and accessory buildingsOutdoorsCrawl spaces

Testing and Resetting a GFCI

When the test button is pushed or if the GFCI trips, power is shut off to the GFCI and protected receptacles. Pushing the reset button should restore power to the GFCI and receptacles...

0 0

I have just attended the Northwest IAEI Section meeting in Anchorage

Alaska where the 2008 NEC and Analysis of Changes was taught. A new

rule is requiring that all 120-volt, 15- and 20- ampere branch

circuits supplying outlets installed in dwelling unit family rooms,

dining rooms, living rooms, parlors, libraries, bedrooms, sunrooms,

recreation rooms, closets, hallways, or similar rooms or areas shall

be protected by a listed arc-fault circuit interrupter, combination-

type , installed to provide protection for the branch circuit. The

combination-type means that the AFCI provides series and parallel

circuit protection.

Also, the AFCI provides protection from bad arcs that cause fires but
does not provide GFCI protection because the ground fault tip is set
at 50 ma.

Now what came up during break was does anyone make a AFCI/GFCI that
provides both the 5 ma GFCI protection and the AFCI...

0 0

The question is often asked, whether it is better to install a GFCI receptacle or a GFCI breaker. There are many factors that may weigh into this decision, so let’s take a few minutes to examine the possibilities of each.

GFCI receptacles are a great choice in areas like bathrooms, kitchens, exterior receptacles, and those around water. However, that can also be said for GFCI breakers for these ares. The thing to consider is what may be connected to the GFCI protected circuit if connected to the breaker. If the circuit is only for protecting the receptacles in that area, then maybe a breaker is the better choice. The GFCI breaker could be protecting many outlets, which would then be a cost saver. However, if there is going to be receptacles that don’t need to be protected on that circuit, maybe a GFCI receptacle is the better choice.

Now, let’s consider the location of the outlets and how accessible they are. Let’s take a basement, where the electrical panel just...

0 0

Shop for 60 amp gfci breaker at Grainger. Find great deals on eBay for Double Pole GFCI Circuit Breaker, 60 Amp. Over 1.5 million maintenance, repair & operations (MRO) products. ... you use the same double-pole GFCI breaker. The Square D Ground Fault circuit interrupter protects people against electrical shocks. ... 40 Amp BR Type 2-Pole GFCI Breaker with. Model #NAGF215CP Format 15AX120/240VX2P ... 120/240 VAC 50 A BR Circuit Breaker 2 Pole Plug-In. Article #0265043. 15A 2 Pole 120/240V Type Q GFCI Breaker 0. Shop with confidence. GE THQL2130GF1 2 Pole 30 Amp GFCI Plug-in Circuit Breaker. ... 40 Amp BR Type 2-Pole GFCI Breaker with. Be careful not to confuse these with "cheater" breakers. Shop now for quick shipping to most of Canada. Double-pole breakers supply 240 volts and use two spaces in your home's breaker box. Acquire the GE Q-Line 20 amp 2-1/4 in. 60 Amp Double Pole GFCI Breaker only by Siemens Canada, fits in most newer Siemens panels. ... Square D Qo 200-Amp 2-Pole...

0 0

Ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI circuit breakers) are similar to standard circuit breakers. They are not like a fuse at all.

A fuse is designed to prevent electrical fires. If a live wire accidentally touches a neutral wire – this can happen if the insulation disintegrates, gets chewed through by a mouse or a nail is accidentally driven through a wire within the wall – a large amount of current will flow through the circuit heating up the wires like the coils in a toaster.

A fuse is designed to heat up faster than the wire, thereby burning out before the heat from the wire can start a fire.

A GFCI circuit works more subtly. Take a look at an average 120 volt wall outlet. You will see that there are two vertical slots with a round hole below them.

The slot on the left is a bit larger than the one on the right. The larger one is the neutral and the smaller one is live or hot. The round hole below is the ground.

All the electricity used...

0 0

When you're looking into the cost to install a GFCI circuit breaker, you can expect to pay $165 - $280, typically, for materials and labor.

What is a GFCI?

A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) is a device that's designed to protect you and your family against severe, potentially fatal, electric shocks and burns caused by your home electrical system. A GFCI circuit breaker or receptacle monitors the flow of current through a circuit. If it detects a ground fault -- an unintentional electrical path to the ground -- it will immediately cut the power to prevent electrocution of anyone in physical contact with any component of the electrical system -- wiring, outlets, appliances, light fixtures, etc.

Install a circuit breaker with a built-in GFCI into your electrical panel box to protect the electric wiring and everything on the branch circuit which it supplies against both ground faults and circuit overloads.

Install GFCI Receptacle vs. GFCI Circuit...

0 0

The storm is coming, and this time you’re prepared. You've got your stockpile of food and water, a portable generator and a supply of fuel to get you through a week with no power. You start up your generator, plug in your refrigerator and … the generator trips.

You turn off your generator and reset the “breaker”, restart and five minutes later the power is out again.

This is an especially frustrating scenario for homeowners who are depending on a portable generator as back-up power in an emergency.

There are a couple common causes for portable generator tripping, and the solution could be as simple as replacing a power cord. So read on for step-by-step troubleshooting.

What’s Tripping? GFCI vs Circuit Breaker 101

In general, there are two devices that can “trip” (shut off power) on a portable generator – the Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) receptacles and the circuit breaker. Both are safety devices, but they serve different purposes and...

0 0


Prevention from Shock Hazards

What is a GFCI

A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) can help prevent electrocution. If a person’s body starts to receive a shock, the GFCI senses this and cuts off the power before he/she can get injured.

GFCIs are generally installed where electrical circuits may accidentally come into contact with water. They are most often found in kitchens, bath and laundry rooms, or even out-of-doors or in the garage where electric power tools might be used.

What is a ground fault?

According to the National Electrical Code, a “ground fault” is a conducting connection (whether intentional or accidental) between any electric conductor and any conducting material that is grounded or that may become grounded. Electricity always wants to find a path to the ground. In a ground fault, electricity has found a path to ground, but it is a path the electricity was never intended to be on, such as through a person’s...

0 0

Ground Resistance Clamp On Tester

USER MANUAL Ground Resistance Clamp On Tester MODEL 382357 Introduction Congratulations on your purchase of Extech s 382357 Ground Resistance Tester. This Clamp on device allows the user to measure ground

More information

Large Vane CFM/CMM Thermo Anemometer

USER GUIDE Large Vane CFM/CMM Thermo Anemometer Model AN300 Introduction Congratulations on your purchase of the Extech AN300 Vane Airflow Anemometer. This instrument measures Air Velocity, Air Flow (volume),

More information

Manual Ranging MultiMeter

Owner s Manual Manual Ranging MultiMeter Model 82345 CAUTION: Read, understand and follow Safety Rules and Operating Instructions in this manual before using this product.! Safety! Operation! Maintenance!

More information

AutoRanging Digital MultiMeter

Owner's Manual AutoRanging Digital MultiMeter Model...

0 0
HOME SitemapIs Electricity Really Mysterious?
GFCI - The Confusing World of the Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter
AFCI Circuit Breakers - Is Technology Making Us Less Competent?
Electrical As a Second Language - Getting Terms Straight
Replacing Switches And Receptacles In A Home - DIY Pitfalls
Switched Outlets - What Can I Do With Them?
Home Inspector Says the Outlets Are Wrong!
Light Bulbs Burning Out - Why?
Incandescent Light Bulbs - More Efficient Than You Thought

Is Electricity Really Mysterious?

The scientist and the homeowner have two entirely different reasons for saying that electricity is mysterious.

They are probably talking about different things. The scientist is considering some basic principles of nature, which as yet have no deeper explanation. The average person might share such wonder. But when I hear a homeowner say that "electricity" mystifies them, they usually mean that they don't know how to deal with their...

0 0
0 0