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Electrical  /  December 29, 2022

Saskatoon Electrician: What You Need To Know About GFCI Outlets

What You Need to Know About GFCI Outlets

Electricity adds to the functionality of your home. Your house likely has several electrical outlets throughout, with at least two in every room. An electrician in Saskatoon likely installed the initial plugs in your home, and more than likely, you probably have access to at least one or two ground fault circuit interruption outlets. If you just started scratching your head, don’t worry. Many homeowners are unfamiliar with GFCI outlets, but they are among the safest outlets in the home.

GFCI Outlets: Everything You Need To Know

As a homeowner, you may not need to understand the intricacies of electrical circuits and how your breakers connect throughout the house, especially the specifics of your home’s electrical system. However, many professional electricians do urge homeowners to understand the basics of outlets because these are devices that most of them will not call a professional to replace. As long as you perform an outlet replacement safely by turning off the power and following instructions, you should be okay, but GFCI outlets are a bit different, and it is worth knowing what you might get yourself into when replacing one.

What Are GFCI Outlets?

A GFCI outlet is a protective outlet designed to break the circuit whenever it senses an imbalance. Imbalances can refer to any abnormalities in the incoming or outgoing current. Since the outlet cuts the connection, it reduces the risks of faulty wiring overheating or causing a fire. 

Electricians and homeowners often install GFCI outlets in high-risk areas like kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms anywhere high-powered appliances or devices get used. High-power items can refer to microwaves, hair dryers, and several other things that might overload a circuit.

How Do They Work?

The GFCI is integrated into the plug and continually measures the flowing current, allowing it to sense real-time current fluctuations. The device has three holes, two for neutral and hot wires and a third for a ground wire. When the device reads an abnormal change in the current, it immediately cuts off the connection. 

Consider using a hair dryer in the morning after washing your face. The sink is full of water. The hair dryer slips from your hands, and instinctually you try to catch it but miss. Both the hair dryer and your hands go into the water. The GFCI senses the sudden change to the current and cuts the power before you are electrocuted.

What Are the Benefits of Having One?

GFCI outlets are usually present in any room with access to both electricity and water. Experts explain that these outlets have several benefits, including:

  • Preventing shocks
  • Avoiding damage to appliances
  • Averting Electrical fires

Why Should You Have One?

Many older homes may not have a lot of GFCI outlets, but times change, and so do building codes. Increasingly, state and city regulations require GFCI outlets throughout a home and not just in areas near water. Some laws require the outlets for any single-phase outlet of 125 volts. Therefore, you should have several GFCI outlets throughout your home because they are safety features required by law in many territories.

GFCI Outlets: Why You Should Hire a Professional Electrician

You should call electrical repair services if you need to install new GFCI outlets or existing outlets. Most homeowners are unfamiliar with their home’s electrical systems, and real-world environments are no place to learn. Failing to install the outlet correctly could increase the risks of electrical shock or fires.

Do you need to install several GFCI outlets to get your property up to code? Contact Handyman Connection to discuss the company’s electrical services and team. A certified electrician will come to assess your property and provide an estimate for proposed or requested work.

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