14/3 from panel to 2 GFIs (Canada)

cfvhMay 13, 2013

Hello everyone,

Today I experienced my first electrical inspection for a house I wired all by myself. It went wonderfully! The inspector only had a couple of suggestions but otherwise everything is fine.

One concern, however, involves the kitchen island. One of the narrow ends of it abuts the wall and there I have placed a double-gang box fed with 14/3 from the panel (shared-neutral circuit, double-pole 15A breaker). I intend(ed) to put two GFI receptacles there.

Perhaps the inspector misunderstood me and I didn't have a chance to go back and explain (we had a lot of ground to cover, three floors, two kitchens, etc), but I think he thought I intend to carry the shared neutral past these two receptacles. He said I would need a double-pole GFI breaker and those are pretty costly.

Is it alright to have a two pigtails from the neutral, one feeding each neutral line terminal, and then to have the black go to the hot line terminal on one GFI receptacle and the red to the hot line terminal on the other?

And, say I had to add another receptacle on the end of the island, can I tap 14/2 off of the load terminals of one of these GFI receptacle?

The kitchen island is 4' by 6', sink is currently set to go in the middle but may shift toward the free end of the island.

I am in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Thank you!

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You are correct, electrically speaking. The shared neutral would go to the Line connection on both GFCIs. Any downstream devices would be wired from the Load side of one GFCI or the other. Ground wires are run the same as a non-GFCI protected circuit.
One thing to check on, though. I haven't done any wiring in Canada, but I had been given to understand that kitchen counter receptacles there were required to be split-circuit. If this is true, you would need two 14/2 cables to go to the downstream receptacle.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 10:26PM
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Ron Natalie

Once you pass the GFCI the neutral can no longer be shared. The neutral and hots on the protected side of the GFCI must be connected only to the devices that follow. If the neutral touches either a different neutral or a ground, the GFCI will rightfully trip.

I'm no CEC expert either, but I think the rules let you skip the split receptacle stuff if you use 20A circuits and that adjacent receptacles are on different 20A circuits (i.e. you can hip hop 2 20A circuits through all the receptacles).

But the above mentions 14 G (which only has 15A ampacity), which means you are required to continue the two circuits and split all the receptacles.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 8:30AM
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Hey guys,

Here is a link relevant to my situation (it is the inspection body I have to deal with), I fall under "B2" (attached at bottom).

Theoretically, if I have two duplex receptacles in a double-gang box, I would have to split each? That does not make sense to me (whether it's one receptacle each on a circuit or one half of both, it's kind of the same arrangement).

If I require just a single duplex receptacle and am wanting to put in two duplex receptacles, each on a dedicated leg, do you think I should talk with the inspector about it and see if it is okay?

Here is a link that might be useful: Ontario Electrical Safety Code - Bulletin 26-23-2

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 1:38PM
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Ron Natalie

OK, doing some research into Ontario, your choices are as I stated...split receptacles on 14-3 which would require a GFCI breaker to serve the sink area (in Canada, only the ones near the sink not all the countertop must be GFCI protected) or GFCI (can be receptacle version) protecting two individual 20A circuits.

Whether two duplexes in the same box would be allowed to be on opposite MWBC legs and skip the splitting I guess is up to local interpretation.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 4:34PM
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Thanks. I will ask the inspector. Would rather not pull the wire but I would do that sooner than pay a small fortune for a double pole GFI breaker.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2013 at 4:42PM
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