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Old 22-06-2013, 12:29   #16
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Re: GFIC WIRING

Just so you know: GFCI units may only last about ten years.

Pre-2006 units that "failed" might still allow power to pass, but the protection part would no longer function.

Post-2006 units were redesigned so that when the protection function ceases to operate, the whole unit shuts down - leaving you in the dark (so to speak).

You might want to read this concerning failures and testing:

Testing GFCI Outlets: The Family Handyman

James
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Old 22-06-2013, 12:42   #17
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Re: GFIC WIRING

Quote:
Originally Posted by macbeth View Post
So I could just go and buy some ordinary outlets for outlets 2 & 3 ?
Yes.

It only takes one GFCI unit in the FIRST position to protect all the downstream outlets. And while it's possible to install a single GFCI in the 2nd or 3rd position, the outlets between the GFCI and the inverter would be unprotected - defeating the whole point.

A quick search indicates that 15 or 20 amp GFCI combination GFCI/outlet are the norm. Choose wisely. Do not under-rate the circuit!.

As to particular GFCI mfrs being / not being compatible with this-or-that inverter model/mfr.... I can't help with that. Sorry.
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Old 22-06-2013, 17:10   #18
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Re: GFIC WIRING

Repeat:

I checked regular outlets from the hardware store. Unfortunately, they are designed for household solid bare copper wire, and the strip connections holes on the back are consequently too small a diameter for the tinned wiring I installed in the boat some years ago !!

So I have a question: O1, the first outlet in the chain, a GFIC, i.e. connected to the AC shorepower or the inverter, has to be a Hubble to be accepted by Xantrix (sp ?) and thus ABYC.

Can I use my old Leviton GFICs down stream, i.e O2 and O3, just as ordinary outlets ? If so, how do I wire O1, O2, O3 ? The tinned wiring fits the holes in all these outlets.
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Old 22-06-2013, 17:20   #19
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Re: GFIC WIRING

If you want to use the old leviton gfci's, you can "pigtail" the wires using mechanical connectors( that is, connect the in and out wires together, and add a third wire that goes to the device terminals) and heat shrink, or if the "line" terminals have space for two wires, just run in and out on that terminal. Good luck!

Rich
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Old 22-06-2013, 20:20   #20
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Re: GFIC WIRING

GFCI's on a boat...easy use the commercial duty outdoor rated 20 amp outlets, they will accept 12 AWG with a Wire feurel for stranded wire.

Most of the the crap sold at Home Crapo is crap, but they also, do cater to commercial building management.

So you will almost always find outlets that cost 2 bucks, and then the commercial outlets that cost about 5-8 times that price.


But on a boat the 2 buck, is an up-chuck.

Lloyd
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Old 22-06-2013, 20:27   #21
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Re: GFIC WIRING

The best solution is to change the main breaker to a ELCI and use any outlet you like!!!
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Old 22-06-2013, 20:40   #22
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Re: GFIC WIRING

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The best solution is to change the main breaker to a ELCI and use any outlet you like!!!
Just don't use the 2 buck-upchuck outlets!!

They don't last in spec houses, and the home owner ends up paying 4 times the costs of using using a commercial duty rated device, when it's all said and finally done.

But it is a cheap game to get in...on a boat there is no cheap game.

Lloyd
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Old 22-06-2013, 20:45   #23
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Re: GFIC WIRING

An ELCI trips at nominal 30ma. If you "protect" yourself with ELCI only - as the above post suggests - you need to understand that 30ma is a potentially fatal dose and can kill you - dead.

Evidently the argument here is that since you are already dead with a 30ma ELCI jolt then there is no real need for a 5ma GFI safety device.

You will no longer be able to care about the difference between the two.

Charles
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Old 22-06-2013, 20:50   #24
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Re: GFIC WIRING

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The best solution is to change the main breaker to a ELCI and use any outlet you like!!!
You're joking, right?

An ELCI, installed as required within 10 of the shore power inlet, provides 30mA ground fault protection for the entire AC system beyond the ELCI. GFCIs are still required in heads, galleys, machinery spaces, and weather decks.

That is from Blue Sea Systems about protection against swimmers getting zapped, and retrofitting the SHORE power connection.

Here's the link for reference: Blue Sea Systems Offers Solutions for Mounting ELCI Breakers to Comply With ABYC July 2010 Requirements - Blue Sea Systems

James
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Old 22-06-2013, 21:12   #25
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On an invertor you do not have a mains supply that includes earth as a return. Hence GFCIs have limited use.

Same reason with isolating transformers

Examine the failure modes

This is why I brought up the point.

Dave
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Old 22-06-2013, 21:24   #26
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Re: GFIC WIRING

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Originally Posted by Chas Erwin View Post
An ELCI trips at nominal 30ma. If you "protect" yourself with ELCI only - as the above post suggests - you need to understand that 30ma is a potentially fatal dose and can kill you - dead.

Evidently the argument here is that since you are already dead with a 30ma ELCI jolt then there is no real need for a 5ma GFI safety device.

You will no longer be able to care about the difference between the two.

Charles
No doubt that 30ma can stop your heart. Of course, that's assuming it travels thru your heart. The 5ma number for GFCI was chosen as that is the as safe level when applied to your heart via paddles with your chest open. Not to many people I know do such things.
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Old 22-06-2013, 21:28   #27
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Re: GFIC WIRING

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
On an invertor you do not have a mains supply that includes earth as a return. Hence GFCIs have limited use.

Same reason with isolating transformers

Examine the failure modes

This is why I brought up the point.

Dave
In the US (not sure about other jurisdictions), all sources have neutral strapped to boat ground. Inverters, ITs, and gensets.
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Old 22-06-2013, 21:29   #28
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Re: GFIC WIRING

A GFI receptacle works just fine even if safety green does not exist.

A GFI works with isolation transformers too. The safety green "path to ground" returns to the isolation transformer itself but that has nothing to do with how a GFI works.

Confusion abounds -- explain why you say GFI has limited use in the inverter and isolation transformer case?

Charles
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Old 22-06-2013, 21:32   #29
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Re: GFIC WIRING

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Originally Posted by Chas Erwin View Post
Confusion abounds -- explain why you say GFI has limited use in the inverter and isolation transformer case?
If the source neutral is NOT tied to ground, there is no return path outside of neutral and/or hot. That is Dave's point.
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Old 22-06-2013, 21:41   #30
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Re: GFIC WIRING

Dave's point is a fantasy.

A GFI (an ELCI too) monitors the difference between the "white" (neutral) and the "black" (hot). If the difference between those two is > 5ma the GFI trips. The existence of safety "green" (ground) is irrelevant to the device.

And anyway - one never bonds/connects (neutral) "white" to safety "green" (ground) on the boat not ever - absent an isolation transformer/inverter/generator source.

Charles
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