Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) receptacles and circuit breakers are to help prevent accidental shock in potentially wet areas such as bathrooms, kitchens, exterior receptacles and garages. Should the sensor in the receptacle or breaker detect current flowing through a non wired ground source, it is designed to trip the power to that receptacle and the ones subsequently in line with it. Manufacturers of these devices recommend they be tested monthly, as like many mechanical type switches they can wear out over time and become non functional.
To test a GFCI circuit, simply press the “Test” button on the receptacle itself, or at the GFCI circuit breaker in the panel. When pressed, you should hear a “pop” sound and there should no longer be power to the GFCI protected receptacles. To reset the system, simply press the “Reset” button on the receptacle of flip the GFCI circuit breaker fully off and then back on again. Should a GFCI circuit ever start failing to test trip, or fail to reset it is time to replace it.
NEV-CAL Home Inspections recommends having GFCI protection at all receptacles in Kitchens, Bathrooms, Garages and exterior receptacles for safety.