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GFCI receptacle

GFCI Receptacles
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Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter Receptacles (GFCI) are required for bathrooms, whirlpools and spas, garages, outdoors and around pools. They are recommended for all areas where water and electricity come close together. GFCI receptacles can either be installed as individual units (for older homes) or as a separate circuit (since the mid 1980s).
How they work. The GFCI monitors the flow of electricity to the appliance along the hot wire (black) and back along the neutral wire (white). It can almost instantly sense an electric fault when less electricity returning from the appliance or tool indicates leakage. In a fraction of a second it interrupts the circuit, stopping the flow of electricity before someone is hurt or electrocuted.
Testing a GFCI. Just like many other safety devices, you should test the GFCI receptacle monthly as follows:
- Push TEST button and RESET button should pop out. If not, call an electrician.
- Plug in a light. If the light is on and the RESET button is popped out, call an electrician.
- If tests are okay, restore power by pushing the RESET button. If the RESET button does not stay down, call an electrician.

GFCI and aluminum wiring
. All receptacles connected to aluminum wiring must be marked CO/ALR to ensure safety. Ground fault circuit interrupter receptacles cannot be connected directly to aluminum wiring and must be pig-tailed.
Pig-tailing. A 6" (150 mm) piece of copper wire is connected to the receptacle and the connection to the aluminum wiring is completed with a twist-on connector. Connectors for pig-tailing must be marked CO/ALR and an oxide inhibiting compound must be applied.
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