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GFCI Protection of Drinking Water Coolers

Discussion in 'Electrical Codes' started by jar546, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. jar546

    jar546 *****istrator

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    NEC 422.5(A) provides a list of appliances that require GFCI protection with water coolers being one of them (2). NEC 422.5(B) requires that the GFCI be readily accessible.

    A common problem that I have is that for final inspection, many times the receptacle is hidden and enclosed behind the water cooler cover. This is OK if the receptacle is protected by a GFCI breaker in the panelboard but not OK if the actual GFCI test/reset receptacle is inside the cover and is a violation.

    Something to remember to check on your next inspection. Remember, not all GFCI protection requirements are in NEC 210.8.

    IMG_5813.JPG
     
  2. steveray

    steveray Sawhorse

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    Good heads up Jeff!.......If the cover is removable with no tools does it pass with the GFCI receptacle? Just want to clarify.
     
  3. jar546

    jar546 *****istrator

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    No. It does not meet the definition of “readily accessible”
     
  4. steveray

    steveray Sawhorse

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    Soooooooo.....Any outdoor equipment that has a door (or indoor for that matter) on the enclosure is not readily accessible? Or are we saying that "hinged" obstacles are OK?
     
  5. jar546

    jar546 *****istrator

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    Read the definition.

    capable of being reached quickly for operation, renewal, or inspections without requiring those to whom ready access is requisite to actions such as to use tools, to climb over or remove obstacles, or to resort to portable ladders and so forth
     
  6. Rick18071

    Rick18071 Sawhorse

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  7. ADAguy

    ADAguy Sawhorse

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    Shown location is not accessible too as the DF is not located in an alcove or has cane rails.
     
  8. jar546

    jar546 *****istrator

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    A lot of the arguments on that forum for the thread you posted are based on situational opinion and not the code. We get the same thing here. People can try to justify but if you have to remove a cover, it is not compliant. Most are enclosed all the way around.
     
  9. e hilton

    e hilton Bronze Member

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    It is accessible for users, there are no obstacles to front or side approach. Cane rails are a different issue.
    In your other response about not being correctly accessible to reset the breaker, no part of the quote seems to prohibit doors (like inside a kitchen cabinet) or tool-free panel removal.
     
  10. ADAguy

    ADAguy Sawhorse

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    sorry Hilton, projection greater than 8" btwn 27 & 80" along POT
     
  11. e hilton

    e hilton Bronze Member

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    AD ... not sure i understand your comment. I agree its missing cane signal devices. But as far as being accessible to HC users ... there are no barriers.
     
  12. ADAguy

    ADAguy Sawhorse

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    DFs must be either in an alcove or have cane detection if they project more than 4" from the finished face of walls on POT's, mounted at compliant heights and with knee space to be accessible.
     
  13. LCBob

    LCBob Registered User

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    Good/Bad.....Right/Wrong.....Like it or not, according to the NEC, the 'Readily accessible' term has the same meaning weather applied to GFCI protection devices or service disconnecting means.

    Would you allow a service disconnect behind/underneath the drinking fountain?

    Just asking.
     
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  14. ADAguy

    ADAguy Sawhorse

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    LC, it seems we/you and I are speaking about different things. Disconnect can be behind/underneath.
    The DF on the other hand is not installed in an ADA compliant manner.
     
  15. Pcinspector1

    Pcinspector1 Platinum Member

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    2011NEC 422.52 Electric Drinking Fountains. Electric drinking fountains shall be protected with ground-fault circuit-interrupter protection.

    Does not say readily accessible or direct you to a list of appliances.

    Must be a code change after the 2011NEC indicating "readily accessible".
     
  16. LCBob

    LCBob Registered User

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    ADAguy, I do think we are speaking about different things. The NEC definitions of accessible and readily accessible are quite different than the ICC definitions of accessible.

    I was commenting on the original post regarding GFCI protection and the 'readily accessible' requirement of 210.8 in the NEC.
     
  17. LCBob

    LCBob Registered User

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    PCinspector1, I think the 'readily accessible' requirement was added in 2011.
     
  18. jar546

    jar546 *****istrator

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    It is actually in 422.5(A) and (B).
     
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  19. Rick18071

    Rick18071 Sawhorse

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    Why don't GFCI need working space? They are required to be tested monthly.

    110.26 Working space for equipment operating at 600 volts, nominal, or less to ground and likely to require examination, adjustment, servicing, or maintenance while energized shall comply with the dimensions of 110.26(A)(1), (A)(2), and (A)(3) or as required or permitted elsewhere in this code.
     
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  20. Pcinspector1

    Pcinspector1 Platinum Member

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    Rick, that's an excellent point, the GFCI's are required to be tested monthly. So the newer code change would allow the GFCI's to be tested putting the receptacle outside the drinking fountain shroud or cover. MPO is the GFCI outside the cover looks terrible and an access panel should be designed on the shroud and an exception should be proposed to the code.
     

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