DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Electrical and Wiring > 15 or 20 amp GFCI receptacle?




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Old 12-22-2011, 02:17 AM  
SBay_ecologist
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Default 15 or 20 amp GFCI receptacle?

Hello All:

Do I need 20 amp GFCI's?

Backgorund info:

Upon the recommendation I got from this forum, I am about to replace a few of my two-prong receptacles with GFCI ones.

Some are in the kitchen, and some are in the lving room and bed rooms.

One of them-- you may have read my earlier story about an arcing receptacle-- is for the microwave.


Thanks.



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Old 12-22-2011, 08:06 AM  
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You can use either.



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Old 12-22-2011, 08:07 AM  
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If the breakers are 15 amp use 15 amp plugs, 1 gfi for each breaker.

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Old 12-22-2011, 08:10 AM  
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That depends on the circuit.
What is the wattage of your microwave?
Is this a 15 or 20 amp breaker?
Is the guage of wire correct for the breaker on this circuit?
A 15amp breaekr will have 14AWG wire a 20amp breaker will have 12AWG wire.
You will not want to put a 15 amp GFI on a 20 amp circuit

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Old 12-22-2011, 06:51 PM  
speedy petey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kok328 View Post
You will not want to put a 15 amp GFI on a 20 amp circuit
Why not??? You are aware that 15A GFI's are rated for 20A feed through, right?

When was the last time you needed a 20A configured receptacles for anything general in a home? I am not talking about a dedicated appliance, A/C or power tool.

There is simply NO reason to use 20A receptacles in a general use residential application. This is for the US, I believe Canada has different rules.
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Old 12-23-2011, 12:21 PM  
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You are correct about Canada. The receptacle has to match the circuit. A 20 amp circuit has to have 20 amp receptacles. They can be the T slot version that accepts 15 amp plugs or they can be the dedicated 20 amp version with the horizontal only slot.

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Old 06-02-2013, 01:19 PM  
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Hi - The GFCI outlet in the bathroom died - it is 3-prong w/red & black buttons in center - have no idea if it is a 15 or 20amp. It is the only outlet in the bathroom. Other switches are for the lights and fan. Do I use a 15 or 20amp and what is the difference??? Thanks...

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Old 06-02-2013, 04:57 PM  
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The red/black buttons in the middle are the 'test'/'reset' buttons.
If by 'died' you mean tripped, press the 'reset' button to restore power to the outlet.
If the 'reset' button won't hold down then turn off the circuit breaker to the outlet (and for this will have to verify no power with a voltage meter or sensor), remove the outlet, verify no voltage, what amp it is and replace it with same amperage.

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Old 06-10-2013, 09:46 AM  
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Use a 15 amp GFCI unless you use a lot of power out of this outlet. If you figure you use more than 12 amps then consider a 20 amp GFCI. But, you will need to verify #12 or larger wire before you do. Most GFCI receptacles are fine to be 15 amp rated and there is nothing wrong with using them on 15 or 20 amp circuits unless they are going to be submitted to very high load.

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Old 06-10-2013, 12:11 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ocean_Man View Post
Use a 15 amp GFCI unless you use a lot of power out of this outlet. If you figure you use more than 12 amps then consider a 20 amp GFCI. But, you will need to verify #12 or larger wire before you do. Most GFCI receptacles are fine to be 15 amp rated and there is nothing wrong with using them on 15 or 20 amp circuits unless they are going to be submitted to very high load.
If the plug is rated for 15 amps and you plug in two items that add up to more than 15 amps but less than 20, you have a problem. Far safer to use the 20 amp plug and there might be rules on this .


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