A Homeowner’s Guide to GFCI as Explained by the Best GFCI Supplier in the Philippines

In the Philippines, GFCI suppliers are ecstatic to see the rising popularity of GFCIs all over the country. These GFCIs are perfect for protecting your homes and establishments from electrical hazards, particularly for those outlets that are in relatively wet areas. Most homes aren’t really required to install GFCI outlets yet in the Philippines, but GFCI Suppliers are already doing their best in spreading information about how helpful they can be.

For those who are already thinking about buying GFCIs, then you should really head on out and make a purchase! But for those who are still unsure, then take the guidance of the best GFCI supplier in the Philippines and try to learn more about them by reading this article!

 

A Breakdown of GFCI

A Breakdown of GFCI

GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. It is known to be an inexpensive electrical device that can be installed in our electrical system or build into a power cord for the sole purpose of protecting people from severe electrical shocks. Ever since GFCIs have been used, the amount of electrocution cases has started to reduce. If it were to be used in more places, then there is a possibility that it can mitigate thousands of electrical hazards that are still occurring in and around houses and other establishments every year.

The integration of ground fault protection into GFCI products is what makes it very special. This makes it viable for you to install outlets in areas that are vulnerable to water. GFCI is specifically designed to protect people from severe electric shocks and it can also reduce the chances of electrical fires from happening in your homes.

Currently, GFCIs are the only devices that are designed specifically to protect people against the electric shock from an electrical system. With that in mind, you need to be knowledgeable about how it actually works to fully understand it.

  • What Exactly Are Ground Faults?

A ground fault is an unintentional electrical path created between a power source and a grounded surface. It mostly occurs when equipment is damaged or defective—particularly when live parts are no longer adequately protected from contact. This is dangerous because your body can accidentally become the path that a current would take. And since an electric current is usually very strong, it can be enough for you to get burned, severely shocked and even electrocuted.

Luckily, GFCIs have now provided a way to prevent such things from happening.

  • How GFCI Works

A GFCI continuously tracks the current flowing through a circuit. These usually have three holes, one for the hot wire, one for the neutral wire, and the one in the middle serve as a ground wire. If the current that flows through suddenly changes—even by just a little amount as compared to the returning current, the GFCI will automatically interrupt the power in less than a second. This imbalance in the current flowing from hot to neutral is the sign that something has gone wrong along the circuit. This will prevent people from getting a lethal dose of electricity that can lead to different types of harmful effects such as getting burned, severely shocked, or getting electrocuted.

GFCI suppliers in the Philippines follow a strict testing procedure and have high-quality standards that must be met in order for a GFCI to be marketable. This is because it is required in most condominiums and is widely being used in many other homes. It may be an item that has a specific purpose, but its function is something that is essential in any establishment.

 

GFCI Products

GFCI Products

There are three main types of GFCIs. Each has their own specialization while still performing their main purpose of preventing electrical shocks from happening. These products are all alternatives or supplements to the electrical devices commonly found in households.

 

  • GFCI Receptacle

The most common of them all is the receptacles. They are usually used in place of the standard duplex receptacle. It fits into the standard outlet box and provides continuous protection against ground faults for anything that is plugged into it, as well as other electrical outlets that are still part of the circuit. These receptacles are perfect for replacing old and ungrounded two-slot receptacles around the house.

  • GFCI Circuit Breakers

These circuit breakers are usually installed in a panel box to add another layer of protection to the circuits that it supplies. It’s specially made to protect against ground fault and the possibility of a circuit overloading. Unlike GFCI receptacles that would protect those that are plugged into it, these circuit breakers are able to protect the whole circuit, including every outlet and wiring that is connected.

When you choose a GFCI circuit breaker, make sure that it matches the requirements of the main electrical panel. When it comes to relatively old panels, you should consider utilizing GFCI outlets instead.

It does, however, mean that a single problem on an outlet will cut off power to the whole circuit, which might be inconvenient in certain situations.

  • Portable GFCI

These portable GFCIs are used and installed in places where installing GFCIs are not very practical—such as in construction sites and places where outlets are not necessarily in close proximity. Currently, there are two types of portable GFCIs, one contains the GFCI circuitry in a plastic enclosure with plug blades at one end and receptacle slots in the front. The other one is a combination of an extension cord with a GFCI. It adds flexibility in using receptacles that are not protected by GFCIs.

In most cases, these portable GFCIs act as a way of extending the range of outlets while still protecting against ground faults.

 

A Guide to GFCI Receptacle Installation and Testing

A Guide to GFCI Receptacle Installation and Testing

Since the GFCI receptacle is the most common among the GFCI products, it is only fitting that its installation process should be discussed in this article. Even though it is the most known, the installation is almost always left with the professional electricians. Before you even consider trying to install these GFCI receptacles yourself, you should at least have a basic understanding of wiring principles and techniques, be able to interpret wiring diagrams, and have some experience when it comes to wiring.

Aside from basic technical prowess when it comes to wiring, you should also study about the features of GFCIs—It’s parts, how it works, and more importantly, where the wires should go on the receptacle. Once you’ve got a solid understanding of both, then be prepared to do the installation.

Step 1. Identify the Cables.

There are two important labels in a circuit, the LINE cable delivers power from the panel box to the GFCI. Most of the time, there would only be 1 cable that is entering the panel box—that is the line cable. This cable should be connected to the GFCI’s LINE terminals only.

The other line is called the LOAD cable and it delivers power from the GFCI to another receptacle along the circuit. It should only be connected to the GFCI’s LOAD terminals only. If you’ll see a sticker on the Load terminal, do not remove it yet.

Step 2. Turn the Power OFF.

Just like how every project that has to do with electricity starts, you should turn off the power for that circuit first before doing anything. You can choose to turn off a specific circuit breaker, remove the fuse, or turn off the whole panel box altogether. Remember to make sure that the circuit is completely grounded before going any further in this installation.

If you encounter any problems, such as the power still running on that electrical box, then it would be best to call your local electrician to complete the installation instead.

Step 3. Identify the Procedure.

Remove the receptacle from the socket and look at the cables and wires.

If it has more than 4 wires (not including the grounding wires) and/or has cables with more than 2 wires (not including the grounding wire) then you should contact a qualified electrician to do your installation for you as it might involve some complicated wirings.

Otherwise, if you see only one cable (2 to 3 wires), it is sure to be the Line cable. If this is the case, then continue on to Step 4A.

If it has two cables (4 to 6 wires), follow these procedures before continuing to Step 4B.

For those that have two cables:

  • Detach one cable’s white and hot wires from the receptacle and cap each one separately with a wire connector. Make sure that they are from the same cable.
  • Re-install the receptacle in the electrical box, attach the faceplate, then turn the power on at the panel box.
  • Determine if the power is flowing to the receptacle. If so, then the capped wires are the LOAD wires. If not, then the capped wires are the Line wires.
  • Turn the power off again and label the cables.

Step 4A Connecting the Wires (2 to 3 Wires)

  1. Connect the LINE cable wires to the LINE terminals. White wires should be connected to the white terminal, usually silver, and the black wire to the hot terminal, the brass one.
  2. Connect the grounding wire, if there are any. If there aren’t any grounding terminals, connect the LINE cables bare copper (usually green) wire directly to the grounding terminal on the GFCI receptacle.

If there is a grounding terminal, then connect a 6-inch bare copper wire to the grounding terminal on the GFCI. Connect a similar one to the grounding terminal on the box then connect the ends of the wires to the LINE cable’s bare copper wire using a wire connector.

  1. Fold the wires into the box. Keep the grounding wires away from the white and hot terminals. Screw the receptacle to the box and attach the faceplate.

Step 4B Connecting the Wires (4 to 6 Wires)

  • Connect the LINE cable wires to the LINE terminals. White wires should be connected to the white terminal, usually silver, and the black wire to the hot terminal, the brass one.
  • Connect the LOAD cable wires to the LOAD terminals. Remove the yellow sticker to reveal the load terminals, then connect the LINE cable wires to the LINE terminals. White wires should be connected to the white terminal, usually silver, and the black wire to the hot terminal, the brass one.
  • Connect the grounding wire, if there are any. If there aren’t any grounding terminals, connect the LINE cables bare copper (usually green) wire directly to the grounding terminal on the GFCI receptacle.
  • If there is a grounding terminal, then connect a 6-inch bare copper wire to the grounding terminal on the GFCI. Connect a similar one to the grounding terminal on the box then connect the ends of the wires to the LINE cable’s bare copper wire using a wire connector.
  • Fold the wires into the box. Keep the grounding wires away from the white and hot terminals. Screw the receptacle to the box and attach the faceplate.

Step 5 Testing

By this time your outlets should already be equipped with GFCI receptacles. It is very important to test these out first before any kind of usage because if you got something wrong while you were wiring it, then it might not prevent any kind of electrical hazards from happening.

With that being said here are the steps that you should do in order to test out tour new GFCI receptacles.

  1. Turn the power on at the panel box. Press the reset button fully on the receptacle. If it stays in, try to plug in a lamp or something that is easy to identify when it’s on. Leave it there to verify if the power is on.
  2. Press the test button in order to trip the device. This should stop the flow of electricity, making the appliance shut off, the GFCI ‘s red indicator light should come on, and the reset button must pop-out. If the power goes off and the red indicator light comes on, then you are successful in installing the GFCI receptacle.
  3. If you used the procedure on 4B, then check the other receptacles that are also affected by it. It would be best to label the other outlets that are affected as GFCI protected that loses its power when the GFCI receptacle gets triggered.

 

Things to Remember When Dealing with GFCI Products

Things to Remember When Dealing with GFCI Products

Particularly during the installation or maintenance procedures that will require you to work with the electrical systems, you will need to consider many things just to keep you from getting shocked or electrocuted. With that being said, here are a few things to remember when dealing with GFCI products and electrical systems in general.

  • Always turn off the panel box before working with any kind of wiring. Make sure that the wires are grounded before even touching them to prevent even the smallest electrical shock from surprising you.
  • Use GFCI receptacles that have copper or copper clad-wire. Avoid using the ones with aluminum wires.
  • Do not install the GFCI receptacles on a circuit that power life support equipment.
  • Protect the GFCI receptacle with a weatherproof cover that will keep both the receptacle and the plugs dry when you’re installing it in a relatively wet place.
  • In the Philippines, GFCI Suppliers have high standards when it comes to their products. Do not settle for mediocre GFCIs as they can be faulty.

 

Meiji Electric: The Leading GFCI Supplier in the Philippines

GFCIs are lifesavers. They are designed to prevent electrical hazards from happening. With that being said you should only use the GFCIs that meet safety standards.

If it’s quality GFCIs that you want, then you shouldn’t have to look far because Meiji Electric is here and ready to provide you with the best GFCIs that they can provide. Whether you are in need of a GFCI supplier or circuit breaker supplier, Meiji Electric is an electrical company in the Philippines that is very experienced and highly-reputable.

As the Best GFCI supplier in the Philippines, you will always feel safe with the GFCIs that Meiji Electric provides!

Click here to learn more about our different products and services!

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