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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Re: AC units tripping surge protectors

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John T

06-17-2013 05:35:11

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"Don't most electricians wire a refrigerator on a single circuit without using a GFCI"

Of course the code may have changed since I retired from practice, but in my day there was a GFCI "Exception" if it was required otherwise in cases such as for example where a fridge or freezer was in the garage and there was a fear the GFCI would "nuisance trip" and ruin all the stored food. THAT EXCPETION required the receptacle for such an appliance BE IN AN INACCESSIBLE LOCATION such as behind the unit and hidden away where Johnny couldnt plug something into it AND ALSO THE RECEPTACLE WAS A SINGLE NOTTTTTTTTTTTTT A DUPLEX, i.e. ONLY the fridge was plugged into that GFCI exception outlet.

When I was a design engineer (though more commercial and industrial verus home) I would always run a seperate decicated branch circuit for items such as a fridge or freezer or microwave, and, of course, any outlet within 6 ft. as I best recall from the sink had to be GFCI protected.

Best wishes

John T

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George Marsh

06-17-2013 12:03:29

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 Re: AC units tripping surge protectors in reply to John T, 06-17-2013 05:35:11  
I never wire a ref to a GFCI. I use GFCI in kitchen, garage, basement, outside, any place they will get along with motors.

What amazes me is that I have 2 wells wired to a GFCI. One well the pump is above ground and the other the pump is in the well. Both pumps get along with the GFCI.

You may be wondering why I have them wired up to a GFCI? I'm using the GFCI as a disconnect. I have a water alarm that shorts ground to common if it detects water on basement floor. Shorting ground to common on the GFCI will trip it, disconnecting power to the pump. It really works, prevented my basement from a flood when the water softner decided to spring a leak.

Back to the AC problem. #1 Why not remove the power cord, install an old power without protection, connect it to a grounded outlet and see what happens? #2 Or plug in the old style 3 prong cord from A/C in to an extension cord with a GFCI?

I would do #1 first while measuring the current on both the power and ground wire. I like to live on the edge. Love to see sparks fly, don't you? Stimulates the heart. If A/c works, then move to #2.


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John T

06-17-2013 12:35:27

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 Re: AC units tripping surge protectors in reply to George Marsh, 06-17-2013 12:03:29  
Nor did I wire or design any fridges to GFCI circuits and it was all legal and NEC proper due to the "Exception" I cited.

There are all sorts of ways (NEC and home made, perhaps safe and proper perhaps not) to shut off a branch circuit for safety reasons, in my practice days I specified shunt trip breakers controlled by a remote sensor circuit.

I'm like you, Id consider in my own home rewiring the AC BUT AS AN ATTORNEY AND ENGINEER I'm naturally reluctant to give such advice to others, Do as I say NOT as I do lol lol

Nooooooooooooo I dont like to see sparks FLYyyyyyyyyyyyy Im a chicken when it comes to electricity

Take care, fun chattin

John T

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Dusty MI

06-17-2013 16:44:43

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 Re: AC units tripping surge protectors in reply to John T, 06-17-2013 12:35:27  
I helped build a restaurant once. It had fire suppressant system. If that system went off all the exhaust fans shut down. Those fans were single and 3 phase. They all had an extra breaker tied/riveted to there breaker, that's the only time I've seen a 4 pole breaker. That extra breaker was only 5 or 10 amp. The fire suppressant system shorted that extra breaker to ground, and because of the tie handle it shut down the fans.

Sorry about getting side tracked.


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