A GFCI or ground fault circuit interrupter outlet is a type of safety device that breaks circuits whenever current imbalances happen. GFCIs are usually located in areas like bathrooms and kitchens where immediate detection of abrupt changes in the current flow is needed. The GFCI outlet will cut off its power supply once an electric current flow change is detected. So, electrocution is prevented.
For proper functioning, there’s a need to reset a GFCI every time it has turned off power. A GCFI must be reset also for its maintenance once or twice a month. Resetting this outlet is easy with its reset and test button. Below are guides on how to reset a GFCI outlet.
- Prepare the appliance. Turn off all appliances that are plugged into your GFCI breaker or better yet, unplug them from the outlet. This will secure the appliances from damage during the re-engagement of the circuit.
- Find the reset button. It is located beside the test button on the GFCI outlet. Press the reset button. Current flow to the outlet should immediately resume after resetting. Test the outlet with a circuit tester. It should have detected power running in the outlet. Go to the next step if the tester has not detected electric power.
- Find the breaker panel. Sometimes, problem with an unpowered GFCI outlet is on its connected breaker. This is also your way to reset the GFCI outlet in case it doesn’t have the reset button. Locate the breaker that is connected to the electrical circuit where the GFCI outlet is connected. Push the breaker’s reset button. Switch it off and on. Test the outlet again with a circuit tester. The GFCI circuit must have power by now. If not, then contact an electrician immediately. It’s a sign that the GFCI or the breaker is broken. Replacing the damaged part should be done immediately.
- Plug the appliances again. If the reset was successful, then plug again the appliances to the GFCI circuit. It is now ready for use.
- Testing the GCI outlet. You’ll follow the same procedures when testing the GFCI outlet. The only difference is that you have to press on its test button first. After that, check the outlet with a circuit tester. There should be no power in the outlet or else, it is broken. Reset the outlet after testing it by following the steps above.
- Check if the GFCI has a subpanel. You might have two outlets and one GFCI. If you’re the one responsible of the GFCI connection, then inform all adults in your residence so they can do an immediate responsive action if an electrical problem occur.
Understanding electricity is an essential skill especially if you’re a
homeowner. It is part of your responsibility. Electrical problems can
happen anytime and it can immediately kill anyone. Impart your knowledge
about safe use of electricity to other members of the family.
Electricity is a necessity but it must be utilized properly. Also, keep
contact numbers of electricians and post it on a noticeable location
along with other emergency numbers.