There are two different types of outlets in your home: an electrical outlet and a GFCI outlet. What’s the difference with a GFCI outlet?

GFCI = Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter

A GFCI outlet is typically found in kitchens and baths because of the grounding reset button in the middle. This type of outlet is constantly monitoring electricity flowing in a circuit, to sense any loss of current. This type of outlet protects people from electrical shock.

How does it work?

A GFCI is constantly monitoring the electrical current that flows into a circuit, so if the current differs by a small amount (as small as 0.006 amperes), the GFCI will interrupt power to prevent a lethal dose of electricity. This all happens within the blink of an eye.

One example of a GFCI at work: an appliance plugged into a GFCI outlet has a bare wire touching its metal case, which charges the case with electricity. After washing your hands, you might touch the case while touching the metal faucet. While you will get shocked slightly, the power will be shut off by the GFCI before a fatal shock can occur.

The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission requires that GFCI outlets be installed:

  • Underwater pool lighting
  • Outdoors
  • Bathrooms
  • Garages
  • Kitchens
  • Crawl spaces and unfinished bathrooms
  • Wet bar sinks
  • Laundry and utility sinks

Contact your electricians at Blind & Sons today to discuss your outlet needs.