What is a GFCI?

GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter.  GFCI outlets must be installed in any area where electricity and water may come into contact (bathrooms, kitchens, utility rooms, basements, outdoors, etc.)  This device shuts off an electric power circuit when it detects that an electrical current is flowing along an unintended path. (i.e. through water or a person’s body).  Simply, this device is used to protect you from electrical shock.  However, please keep in mind that a GFCI doesn’t give you a license to be careless.

gfi-outletEach outlet has two buttons.  Some are coloured black and red while others are both white (as pictured).  One is a test button and when pressed, it should deactivate the outlet.  This signifies a properly functioning device.
The other is the reset button that you depress to reactivate the outlet in the event of deactivation.  You may wonder, which button is which?  Not to worry, you’ll see by looking closely that each button is labeled either “Reset” or “Test”.







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