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  1. #31
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    canuk

    "Now if the internal GFCI contacts were closed and the switch was wired as above when the switch was closed this would be a dead short to the supply lines and blow a fuse or trip a breaker at the panel. It wouldn't trip the internal GFCI contacts since the sensing/control circuit isn't active."

    I'm sorry but here you are wrong. The power is wired to the load screws and if the reset button is pressed it will feed the GCFI circuit. The switch is wired to the power screws so if the switch is closed the GCFI circuit will trip faster than the breaker or fuse can react so they won't trip or blow. That's why we use a GCFI to trip faster than a breaker or fuse thus offering us greater protection.
    Jack

    P.S. The OP may be gone but that should not keep us from broadening our horizons.
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  2. #32
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    P.S. The OP may be gone but that should not keep us from broadening our horizons.
    I couldn't agree more it's kinda fun.

    Quote Originally Posted by JLMCDANIEL View Post

    I'm sorry but here you are wrong. The power is wired to the load screws and if the reset button is pressed it will feed the GCFI circuit.
    Jack, The GFCI circuit does not work down stream to up stream.
    The internal sense/control circuit is only active when it's wired from the line side.
    So if a short occurs at the line side the GFCI circuit will do absolutely nothing.



    The switch is wired to the power screws so if the switch is closed the GCFI circuit will trip faster than the breaker or fuse can react so they won't trip or blow. That's why we use a GCFI to trip faster than a breaker or fuse thus offering us greater protection.
    The GFCI monitors the imbalance of the hot to neutral at the outputs ( receptacle and load screws ) with reference to the input line hot and neutral. So if there is leakage to ground there would be an imbalance ... then and only then would the GFCI circuit trip. If there were a dead short between hot and neutral at the output ( receptacle or load screws ) then the breaker or fuse at the panel would come into play and chances are the GFCI circuit wouldn't even trip.

    I had the opportunity the other day to refresh myself with the GFCI workings and particulars. I dug up my notes on electrical theory from college then took a GFCI plug and actually bench tested all the scenarios. By wiring it correctly and incorrectly shorting out the inputs and outputs ( something I don't recommend unless you are experienced ).

    btw... Stab-Lock breakers did trip and there was no harm to any animals , breakers or GFCI plugs during this experiment.
    Last edited by canuk; 09-24-2007 at 12:42 AM.

  3. #33
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    Don't you just love getting your hair curled?
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  4. #34
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    I wish there was enough hair to get curly

    Looks like we've hijacked this thread.

  5. #35
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    Some common misconceptions about GFCI's ," they need a Ground connection to work properly " . As Canuck pointed out , they monitor current imbalance between hot and neutral . This imbalance is assumed to be flowing to ground , through you . As little as 4 - 6 milliamps imbalance will cause the GFCI to trip in approx . 20-25 milliseconds . A GFCI is not an overcurrent device . That is the job for the fuses or circuit breakers .

  6. #36
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    Arrow Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    Help! I am not the original poster, although I have had the EXACT problem for the last 3 days. I am tired of trying to figure this out; it seems that someone here may be able to help me. I have the exact same gfci device and cannot get both the light and the switch to work at the same time. Yes, I have tried various combinations, being very careful to turn the electric off and have not blown the circuit ...yet: confused:
    Anyway, before I do blow a circuit or two, maybe someone can help me. I have dawdled in minor electricity, but not much. I replaced the light fixture in my bathroom, which had an electrical outlet connected to it. After replacing the light fixture, I have no electrical outlets in the bathroom. I thought this combination light switch and outlet would work well...yeah, right! The old switch I had was a basic, plain Jane, two poles (hot on top, common on bottom). I tried installing the GFCI there first, finally becoming frustrated, I just replaced it with a new plain one. Then I decided, maybe I could put this switch in the bathroom fan switch box, the light switch to control the fan, and have the use of at least one outlet in the bathroom. The directions are rather vague about where to place the two black wires coming out of the top of the receptacle. I have two wires coming out of the house receptacle box, (both are white, although one is hot and one is not), when I place the hot on the "hot wire line" (brass screw), and the common wire on the white wire line (silver screw), then I am left trying to figure out where the two wires coming out of the top of the light switch go..(I have tried every combination possible), only the actual light switch works. The plug does not work at all, when I have found success at at least activating the light switch one of the two black wires coming out of the receptacle was attached to the hot side of the switch itself. No other combination completes the circuit to get the plug to work. If anyone can give me simple, directions as possible, I am willing to listen! In addition, what are "pigtails" and how is it this is relevant to this switch combo? If anyone is aware of another combo unit that is user friendly, please advise! Also, if the original poster figured it out, please help!

    Thank you all!

  7. #37
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    Dvincent,
    The attached drawing shows how it should be connected under normal circumstances. A pig tail is used to wire the hot from the switch to the hot to the light. A pigtail is two or more wires twisted together with a wire nut. Note the hot wire for the switch (one of the two wires on the unit) may be either wired to the load hot or the power hot, the return wire should then be wired to the matching common screw.

    Now in reading your post you said you only have two wires in the box, that makes me believe that the power is run to the light and then to the switch as in the second drawing, which means this unit will not work in this aplication.

    Hope that helps,
    Jack
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    Last edited by JLMCDANIEL; 10-20-2007 at 11:56 PM.
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  8. #38
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    OOPS, couldn't add a pic on the above post. Here's the drawing of what I believe you have only you have a fan instead of a light. So the unit will not work in this circumstance.

    Jack
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    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  9. #39
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    dvincet.... believe it or not the answer is in this thread but you do have to sift through it .

    So I'll try to simplify and condense it for you.

    On the combo unit you have a brass screw and a silver screw that are marked line.
    These would be for the hot wire (brass) that would come from the breaker panel and the neutral wire (silver). This would energize the GFCI receptacle.

    Now ... you will notice a second set of brass and silver screws marked load. You would attach one of the black wires on the switch combo to the brass load screw and the other black wire would be connected to the wire that goes to your fan with a wire nut.

    There would have to be three wires in the box for this
    1- line hot wire ( live when the breaker is on and not when the breaker is off)
    2- neutral wire
    3- traveler or common ( this is the wire that goes from the switch to turn on the fan or light)




    Then I decided, maybe I could put this switch in the bathroom fan switch box, the light switch to control the fan, and have the use of at least one outlet in the bathroom. The directions are rather vague about where to place the two black wires coming out of the top of the receptacle. I have two wires coming out of the house receptacle box, (both are white, although one is hot and one is not), when I place the hot on the "hot wire line" (brass screw), and the common wire on the white wire line (silver screw),
    I doubt you can use it here since it sounds like the hot is being fed back to the switch from the light fixture. And if that's the case there is no neutral wire so that meant you also had been mistaken in thinking one of the wires was neutral.

    You may go back to your original idea of installing it where the light switch is now .
    Last edited by canuk; 10-22-2007 at 08:42 AM. Reason: correction

  10. #40
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    Default Re: GFCI- W/Light Switch

    Darn .... I see that I"m just too slow at typing .... Jack was able to get a couple in the time it takes me to get one.

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