Can you have a non GFI outlet in the garage?

stash-hdyFebruary 12, 2013

Have a freezer in the garage can you have a nonGFI plug installed to be sure the freezer has power?

This post was edited by stash-hdy on Wed, Feb 13, 13 at 6:15

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Given the volume of responses you post here, it seemed certain that you have a copy of the NEC.
Article 210-8(A) in the 2011 NEC provides no exceptions for the condition you describe.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 9:44PM
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Ron Natalie

Nope, you must have GFCI. You may wish to install a freezer temp alarm or at least put a light on the GFCI as well that you can tell if tripped easily.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 10:16PM
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Thanks, this actually was for my neighbor his outside plug was out and it turned out to be the GFI in the garage. He has his freeeze plugged into that GFI and I suggested he put a nightlight there to see if the GFI was tripped. I was just checking because I thought plugs up high my be legal.

This post was edited by stash-hdy on Wed, Feb 13, 13 at 6:12

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 10:59PM
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Can you have a non GFCI outlet for an alarm panel in the garage?

    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 12:36AM
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I've seen this on other forums. There is no perfectly legal work around. Even if you remove the cord and hard wire the freezer with carflex, that's tampering with a listed item and you also lose your warranty. A 240v freezer might not need GFCI. Got any of those laying around?

They make GFCIs with trip alarms, but I'm told they're not very loud.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 12:58AM
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steve340, no. For all the same reasons and codes listed.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 7:21AM
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More of a curiosity than help - my garage door opener is plugged into the dedicated ceiling 20amp plug - it is not GFI. It passed inspection.

Why couldn't he as he suggest put in a ceiling outlet for the refrigerator?

Also - I have a suggestion. I used to run a lab with tons of sub-zero freezers with irreplaceable tissue samples. We paid for special freezer equipment that was wireless and monitored the freezer temps. the freezers themselves were about $10,0000-$20,000 each. If they fell below the threshold we would get emails, pages, text messages on cell phones, etc.. We could also view logs on the internet, etc.. I don't remember the cost but I don't think this was cheap by any means. I wonder if anyone has a retail version of this now - because it would be great for consumers with freezers in the garage.
Would be fun to research if you are up to it.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:30AM
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Two more comments:

(1) if the plug is dedicated - does it need to be GFCI protected? my understanding is dedicated plugs like garage opener and furnace do not so couldn't he make a dedicated circuit for this?

(2) does the 2011 Article 210.8 now have the requirement that the GFI be readily accessible and therefore, a GFI would not be required behind his garage freezer?

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:42AM
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according to this - NEC 2011 appears to say that GFCI is not required for permanently installed alarms like burglar and fire alarms. Someone up top asked about alarms.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:52AM
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The answer to all your questions is: GFI protection IS required for ALL 120V 15 & 20A receptacles in a garage.

There is NO exception for ceilings. No exception for dedicated. And nothing is said about readily accessible (you are misreading that article).
Also, the fire alarm exceptions in Art.760 would NOT apply to a residential setting. I suggest you read them carefully.

You can't go by an article you found on the web to support your stance. You need to go to the source.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 7:37AM
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Read carefully. The NEC 2011 makes NO EXCEPTIONS --0- NONE! for GFCI protected receptacles in garages of dwelling units. For basements, a non-GFCI receptacle is permitted for an alarm system.
Put together, are these sensible? Not to my way of thinking. I envision that these are written while consuming "adult beverages" and the sober among us are stuck with the consequences. Garage ceiling receptacles protected by GFCI? As best I remember, not required prior to 2005 NEC.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 7:39AM
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Ron Natalie

I suppose you could put in a 30A circuit and a 30A plug on the freezer. Only 15 and 20A 120V receptacles need protection.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 8:27AM
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Not a lot of 30a residential freezers out there unfortunately. Of course, changing the plug on a 20a. freezer voids its ul listing. So, why not just put in a non gfci receptacle. One would be breaking the rules either way. I personally don't have gfci recepts in my garage, or any place in my home. My home was built in 1965. I have not bothered to install any just yet.

This post was edited by btharmy on Fri, Feb 22, 13 at 19:43

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 5:29PM
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In response to the question about alerts, Lacrosse makes something Tracks temperatures, humidity, with online access and email/text alerts if the temperature goes outside the selected range.

I have one on my wine cellar.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 2:12PM
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Acu-Rite has a good refrig/freezer alarm. That will alert you if you are at home. I got one for my parents and they have one sender in each of two freezers. It works well. The price is reasonable, but the Li batteries for the senders will set you back some. Alkalines are fine for the receiver.

The only think it lacks, IMO, is a temporary alarm silence. If you get a false alarm for any reason, an alarm because you have been digging too long, or a real alarm, you should be able to push a button and have the thing activate automatically after some appropriate time delay. Otherwise it is too easy to shut it off and forget t turn it back on.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 8:15PM
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