Overloaded GFI Outlet
Question:Chad, from Louisville, Kentucky asks:
I recently installed a new electrical outlet on a kitchen wall that previously had none. I basically ran the new wire down to our basement and tapped into an existing box that is running two additional outlets. I flipped the power on, plugged in the toaster oven and microwave and the clocks on both power up. However, when I run either of the two appliances, they tend to work for about 1-2 minutes and then stop. It doesn't trip the breaker, but the outlet simply quits working. Without doing anything, the outlet will turn itself back on after about 10 minutes or so (I know this as the clocks on the appliances power back up). I tried replacing the outlet with a GFI outlet and the same thing occurs only this time it does trip the GFI. Could it be the fact that I have plugged in two appliances that surge which is causing this to happen? Why would they work for a bit and then stop but then work again? I am very confused. Thanks. Chad
Answer:My first thought is to identify the circuit that you have tapped into and find out where that circuit originates from and if there could be any problems occurring with that circuit. As for the GFCI outlet, I have experienced where GFI outlets can act like a circuit breaker if the load that is passing though is too great. GFCI outlets do not do well when they are overloaded. You have not mentioned, but it may be that the GFI outlet is rated for 15 amps and the circuit is actually a 20 amp circuit. If this is the case then installing a 20 amp rated GFI outlet may solve the problem. Dave
How Many Outlets Can Connect to the first GFCI Outlet
Question: Using the feed through method, is there a limit on either the number of downstream receptacles or the distance beyond the GFCI outlet?
Answer: You can add any reasonable number of outlets, the concern is to stay within the amperage load of the circuit, distance is not a problem as long as your under 200 feet, depending on the connected types of load placed on the circuit. Dave
Double Quad Outlets Protected by GFCI
Question:This feed through is really good, but how would I wire it if it were a quad with a GFCI in the first position to protect all 3 standard down stream outlets? I would like to put in two quads. Would it be Line in from feed to GFCI, load out to second outlet (standard - non GFCI)in same box; then wire out from this standard non-GFCI to the second quad (2x standard non-GFCI)? Do I just use short wires to connect the outlets in each quad together? Thanks, Dan
Answer: Yes Dan, It's basically the same wiring as shown except that you are wiring the LOAD side out to all your outlets and they may be connected by making jumper wires or tails from each set to one connection for the LOAD Set of wires.