On June 29th, 2015, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) – with the help of UL – announced the beginning changes for Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) standards. The change began with all GFCIs being made after June 28th, 2015 requiring an auto-monitoring function.
The traditional GFCIs that had already been made were still allowed to be sold to businesses and customers, with the purpose that once stock was gone, the new auto-monitoring GFCIs would have to be purchased.
On August 25th, 2017, an UL (Underwriters Laboratories) CSDS (Collaborative Standards Development System) proposal was sent out to follow up with the recent changes that had been made to the UL 943 Standard for GFCIs.
This proposal updated companies and producers of the changes made back in June of 2015 as well as stated that improvements will be made to permanently connected GFCIs.
The new GFCIs will keep the same dimensions as traditional GFCIs. Therefore, no new electrical boxes or face plates will be required. Currently, auto-monitoring GFCIs are not required. However, the chances of finding a non-auto-monitoring GFCI to replace those that are worn out will become more and more difficult since producers have not been able to produce these traditional units in over two years.
Self-testing GFCIs insure the unit is working properly by automatically testing the unit to make sure the sensing and trip ability is correct. Their end-of-life indicator gives added safety to alert when the unit needs replacing.
Keep in mind: You still need to manually test your GFCI monthly!
Auto-monitoring and Self-Testing have the same meaning. There is no difference between the terms. It is common to see UL use the term auto-monitoring while producers prefer the term self-testing.
Line-Load reversal works by stopping power to the unit and not allowing resetting if the unit is wired incorrectly. Whether the unit is just being installed or is being re-installed, any miss-wiring to the self-testing GFCI will result in power loss or the inability to reset the unit.
The only way to tell is to press the "test" button and then the "reset" button. If the GFCI blinks RED once it is a self-test model. If the LED turns immediately to GREEN, it is a non-self-test model.
Effective June 29, 2015, UL revised their UL 943 Standard for Safety for GFCIs. This revision makes it mandatory for GFCIs to feature a self-test and reverse line-load misfire function.
GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter outlets, while GFI stands for Ground Fault Interrupter. Many electricians refer to GFCI instead of GFI, but neither word signifies a difference.
See the steps to install a new GFCI receptacle! We recommend contacting an electrician to install your GFCI, but this guide can help you see what steps they need to take to install it.
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