Why are GFCI’s important?

GFCI stands for ground fault circuit interrupter. Although GFCI receptacles are used most commonly, GFCI breakers installed in the electric panel can also be used to provide protection to an entire circuit. These units are extremely important because they provide optimum safety for personnel in your home and backyard. What makes them so safe is that they will trip at a very low current flow during an electric shock incident in order to prevent any electrocution accidents.

These units can be used all over your home but are required to be used on all kitchen counter outlets, bathroom locations, garages, work benches and outdoor circuits. The outdoor GFCI units must have a weather proof covering called a “weatherproof while in use” cover which allows a cord to be plugged in and the cover to be closed preventing water from getting into the outlet even “while in use.”

One very important consideration is to test your GFCI receptacles or breakers once a month. There is a test and reset button on each device. When you push the test button, the reset button will pop out if the device is working properly. Push in the reset button to restore operation. If the reset button does not pop out upon testing, the outlet is defective and a qualified electrician should replace it.