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GFI safety warning


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#1 gopher OFFLINE  

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Posted June 26, 2016 - 09:38 PM

With all the remodeling and out buildings. I thought I'd tell you of what could have been a tragedy for my family and me. For 3 months I did complete remodel of the home I built in 1997 inside and out. The deck had a gfi with cover from 1997 never a problem always checked all the gfi's two times a year my birthday and the little womans birthday. Fast forward I notices hornets around the cover in the evening. Swatting for awhile I take the cover off got rid of nest getting late I'll just put the cover back on tomorrow. Not watching the news missed weather it rain that night.Walked out on deck instantly caught my eye a big patch of black on siding. At first I didn't know what the h$$$ looking at. The gfi shorted out catching on fire just chunk of melted plastic. Learned now the NEC requires both arc fault and ground fault protection on kitchen and laundry circuits. Gfi's will not trip on arc short. Someone up there surely was watching over us. Needles to say I am putting in dual function afci/gfi circuit breakers. Here is a couple of pics most all the burnt soot washed off.

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#2 WNYTractorTinkerer ONLINE  

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Posted June 26, 2016 - 09:51 PM

If you are putting in the GFCI breakers you will need to separate the Ground and neutral in your panel.  Any leakage from the line or neutral to ground will trip the breaker off.  So if the neutral wires are (load carrying) are mixed up with the grounds it will sense it and trip.  It also looks for any difference between the load and neutral wires and if it's off it will trip as well.  

 

The damage you see there is a direct short between the load and neutral just like it was plugged into something..  Luckily it tripped as you said..  You dodged a big bullet!  Next time you'll put the cover back on huh??

 

Thanks for sharing & Good Luck!


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#3 Sawdust OFFLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2016 - 12:06 AM

Glad to hear nothing terrible happened. Good advice given.
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#4 UncleWillie OFFLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2016 - 12:29 AM

Yikes. Don't play the lottery, you already used up all your luck. 


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#5 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2016 - 06:58 AM

If the cover was on to start with how did a nest get inside?  If it was a weather prof box is should have kept the wasp out.  I have several outside boxes around and have only had a situation with one and that was from ants.  Glad you got by with one and all turned out OK.  We learn by our mistakes.  Been there - done that.


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#6 gopher OFFLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2016 - 11:49 AM

If the cover was on to start with how did a nest get inside?  If it was a weather prof box is should have kept the wasp out.  I have several outside boxes around and have only had a situation with one and that was from ants.  Glad you got by with one and all turned out OK.  We learn by our mistakes.  Been there - done that.

The seal on bottom had small break in it they must be able to squeeze though little openings.


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