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Are there any other such receptacle replacement requirements?

Posted By Keith Lofland, Tuesday, May 01, 2012
Updated: Monday, February 04, 2013

Question

I know the Code requires GFCI protection for replacement receptacles in existing dwellings where receptacles are replaced in areas that would require GFCI protection under today’s Code. Are there any other such replacement requirements for other things such as AFCI protection elsewhere in the Code? DP

Answer

The GFCI requirement for replacement receptacles is located at 406.4(D)(3) in the 2011 NEC. An example of this would be at a non-GFCI protected kitchen countertop receptacle or a bathroom receptacle being replaced. New for the 2011 NEC are replacement receptacle outlets requirements for such things as AFCI protection, tamper-resistant receptacles and weather-resistant receptacles. Section 406.4(D)(4) requires AFCI protection for replacement receptacle outlets supplied by branch circuits that require AFCI protection elsewhere in the Code. The language in this new AFCI requirement will allow AFCI protection to be provided to the replacement receptacle by either an AFCI circuit breaker or by an outlet branch-circuit type AFCI device located at the replaced outlet or upstream on the supplying branch circuit. Both the receptacle and circuit-breaker type AFCI will provide protection for all receptacles and other outlets that are downstream on the branch circuit. It should be noted that this new receptacle replacement AFCI requirement for the 2011 NEC has a future effective date of January 1, 2014 for enforcement of this new requirement.

Section 406.4(D)(5) now requires listed tamper-resistant receptacles to be provided where replacement receptacles are installed at receptacle outlets that are now required to be tamper-resistant receptacles under today’s Code requirements. An example of this would be replacing existing receptacle outlets in the den or bedroom of an older existing dwelling unit as 406.12 requires tamper-resistant receptacles in all areas specified in 210.52. Section 406.4(D)(6) now requires weather-resistant receptacles to be provided where replacement receptacles are installed at receptacle outlets that are now required to be weather-resistant receptacles under today’s Code requirements. A good example of this would be replacing existing receptacle outlets in a damp or wet location such as an outdoor receptacle outlet at a dwelling unit or a commercial building as 406.9(A) and (B) requires listed weather-resistant receptacles at receptacles located in damp and wet locations.

— Keith Lofland, IAEI Director of Education

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Tags:  Focus on the Code  May-June 2012 

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Do washing machines require GFCI protection?

Posted By Mark Hilbert, Tuesday, May 01, 2012
Updated: Monday, February 04, 2013

Question

An inspector told me the other day that a washing machine in a dwelling unit required GFCI protection. I’ve looked and I can’t find that requirement in the 2011 NEC. Can you help me with this requirement? TA

Answer

Thank you for your correspondence. There is no specific requirement in the NEC for the washing machine itself to have GFCI protection. Section 210.52(F) requires a receptacle outlet to be installed for the laundry area and it must be supplied by a 20-ampere branch circuit in accordance with 210.11(C)(2). However, depending on the location of the receptacle outlet itself, GFCI protection may be required. For example, if the laundry area receptacle outlet (20-ampere, 125-volt) is located in a bathroom or an unfinished basement of a dwelling unit, GFCI protection would be required for the receptacle outlet in accordance with 210.8(A)(1) or (A)(5) respectively. Additionally, if the washing machine is located in a laundry room or utility room that included a sink, the laundry area receptacle outlet would have to be provided with GFCI protection if it is located within 1.8 m (6 ft) of the edge of the sink in accordance with 210.8(A)(7). The location of the washing machine and of the corresponding laundry area receptacle outlet is the determining factor as to the requirement for GFCI protection.

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Tags:  Focus on the Code  May-June 2012 

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