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Old 01-02-2010, 05:07 AM
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block heater tripping GFI and breaker

my block heater has been working, but up until recently it has been tripping the GFI and the breaker. I checked the lead cord and i know the gfi is good, is there anything under the hood to look at? The plug itself on the heater looks good, just not sure about the rest of it.
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Old 01-02-2010, 05:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnywong View Post
my block heater has been working, but up until recently it has been tripping the GFI and the breaker. I checked the lead cord and i know the gfi is good, is there anything under the hood to look at? The plug itself on the heater looks good, just not sure about the rest of it.
The block heater itself could be pulling too many amps causing the GFI to trip.
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Old 01-02-2010, 05:17 AM
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Take a look at your extension cord as well
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Old 01-02-2010, 05:24 AM
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You should be plugging into a 20 amp circut - preferrably dedicated. If you're on a 15 amp circut, your pushing it, and if there are other items on the circut that come online while the truck is plugged in, you're probably overloading the circut. Also use the shortest, largest gauge extension cord possable.
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Old 01-02-2010, 05:48 AM
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most homes are wired with the garage gfci pulled off the general lighting circuit. it may have worked before cause you may have not been utilizing power somewhere else. have you been using power differently these last few days? also you could have a nick in the cord or your breaker could go bad. if the gfci is tripping, that means you have a short to ground. if the breaker is tripping, it depends if its a slow trip or instant. instant means a short to ground. if it takes a while, means there is a small short somewhere. process of elimination will find your problem. try putting a regular plug in and see if that works. than try a new breaker and let me now what happens. im a master electrician so i can help
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Old 01-02-2010, 06:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamstoyz View Post
most homes are wired with the garage gfci pulled off the general lighting circuit. it may have worked before cause you may have not been utilizing power somewhere else. have you been using power differently these last few days? also you could have a nick in the cord or your breaker could go bad. if the gfci is tripping, that means you have a short to ground. if the breaker is tripping, it depends if its a slow trip or instant. instant means a short to ground. if it takes a while, means there is a small short somewhere. process of elimination will find your problem. try putting a regular plug in and see if that works. than try a new breaker and let me now what happens. im a master electrician so i can help
I totally agree with Jeff here. Except I tend to go a little crazy with my garage wiring. Each wall is on a different circuit when I do it
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Old 01-02-2010, 06:22 AM
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plug extension cord into your truck first then go ahead and plug it in to your outlet. Seems like every time i plug the cord into an outlet first and then the truck it trips my breaker as well.
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Old 01-02-2010, 06:32 AM
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Originally Posted by rjm0027 View Post
plug extension cord into your truck first then go ahead and plug it in to your outlet. Seems like every time i plug the cord into an outlet first and then the truck it trips my breaker as well.
sounds like over draw. try plugging the cord into your laundry or kitchen counter circuit. the laundry should be a dedicated 20 amp circuit and the kitchen should have two 20 amp circuits. let me know if it trips than
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Old 01-02-2010, 06:35 AM
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ya it can also be that the cord for the block heater itself is back or the element inside could have popped and exposed the element and it shorts out evey time u plug in...That happened to me, thats how i know...
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Old 01-02-2010, 08:31 AM
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thanks for the replys. I do know its on a 15 amp circuit, and there isnt anything else running on this circuit when it trips. And it is not a GFI outlet, its one you plug into the outlet, not sure if that matters but i have 2 and tried both and they both trip instantly usually and throw the breaker right away as well. I have checked the extension cord which is prob about 20' and pretty decent guage, and its in good condition.

why would it be throwing the breaker and the GFI instantly is what i dont understand. The connection seems to be dry and there are no cuts in the cord that i saw.

I do have a few 20 amp circuits, just not in as close proximity to my truck as the garage is, either way ill see if i can get it hooked up to one.
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