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What does a red light mean on a GFCI?

A red light on a GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) outlet typically indicates a fault or a specific condition of the outlet. The specific meaning of the red light can vary depending on the manufacturer and the model of the GFCI outlet. However, there are a few common reasons why a GFCI outlet might display a red light:
1. Tripped GFCI: The most common reason for a red light on a GFCI outlet is that it has tripped due to a ground fault. A ground fault occurs when there is a leakage of electrical current to the ground, which can be caused by damaged wiring or faulty appliances. When a ground fault is detected, the GFCI outlet shuts off the power to prevent electric shock. The red light indicates that the GFCI outlet has tripped and needs to be manually reset by pressing the "Reset" button on the outlet.
2. Self-Testing: Some GFCI outlets have a self-testing feature that checks the functionality of the outlet at regular intervals. The red light may indicate that the GFCI outlet is in the process of self-testing. During this test, the GFCI outlet briefly interrupts the power to verify if it can properly trip and protect against ground faults. Once the self-test is completed, the red light may turn off or change to a different color (such as green) to indicate a successful test.
3. Wiring Issues: A red light on a GFCI outlet can also indicate wiring issues within the outlet or the electrical circuit. It could be a sign of a faulty connection, improper installation, or damaged wiring. In such cases, it's important to turn off the power to the outlet and consult a qualified electrician to inspect and address the wiring issues.
It's worth noting that the meanings of the light indicators on GFCI outlets can vary, so it's important to refer to the manufacturer's documentation or contact their customer support for specific information regarding your particular model. They can provide accurate information about the red light and guide you on troubleshooting steps or necessary actions to resolve the issue. Additionally, if you are uncertain about dealing with electrical components or troubleshooting, it's always recommended to seek professional assistance to ensure safety and prevent further damage.
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