GFCI Outlet Installation Services in Des Moines, IA

Mr. Electric of Central Iowa electrician installing a power outlet.

Let Us Install & Replace Your Electrical Outlets

Your home or business’s outlets may be old or unable to handle your appliances and electronics. Heavy-duty appliances like washers, dryers, and ovens require special outlets, and areas with high moisture can endanger your house and family without proper outlets. Mr. Electric of Central Iowa can help you stay safe and up to code with outlet installation services at Des Moines, IA properties. GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) outlets protect against electrical shock risk and are an inexpensive safety solution. We can install GFCI outlets to ensure your electronics and family members can operate electronic devices without risking shock. These outlets also bring your house up to modern building code standards. You can schedule GFCI installation replacements with our highly trained and qualified technicians.

What Is a GFCI Outlet?

Today’s building codes require GFCI outlets in areas with the highest electrical shock risk, including kitchens, bathrooms, and garages. You can identify GFCI outlets by the “Test” and “Reset” buttons on the receptacle. Mr. Electric recommends GFCI outlets to stay up to code and enhance your home’s electrical safety, preventing shocks, fires, and other injuries and damage. These outlets safeguard you and your electronic devices against electrical hazards by monitoring how much electricity flows in a circuit. The GFCI immediately shuts off power in an outlet the moment it detects an imbalance in your electricity flow. With our skills and expertise, we can install these outlets quickly and carefully to ensure adequate protection against harm and damage.

How Do I Operate a GFCI Outlet?

After Mr. Electric of Central Iowa completes your electrical outlet installation, using your new outlets is fairly simple. If we install a GFCI outlet, there aren’t many differences between operating a GFCI and any regular outlet. You only need to press the "Reset" button whenever your GFCI outlet stops power flow under normal operating conditions. These outlets are significantly more reliable than depending on your electrical panel’s circuit breaker to stop current flow when an imbalance occurs. GFCI outlets are much more sensitive to these small current variations. In fact, manufacturers design these outlets to cut off power flow before receiving an electric shock will affect your heartbeat. This critical safety function protects your well-being, and testing all your home’s GFCI outlets every month is essential.

How to Test Your GFCI Outlet’s Performance

Testing your GFCI outlet performance is a task anyone can perform. However, like any other service involving your home’s electrical system, you must carry out all steps carefully without diverging from professional instructions. Mr. Electric of Central Iowa’s highly trained and qualified electrical technicians can explain the process during a phone call or while visiting your home during an appointment. We’ve outlined the steps to test your GFCI outlet below for you to verify its performance. Be sure to contact us and schedule a GFCI replacement if your outlet fails any part of the testing process:

  1. Press the “Test” button on your receptacle to stop electrical flow.
  2. Plug in a small electrical device that requires a minimal amount of power to run, such as a night light, to verify there is no current flowing to your receptacle.
  3. You can return the power flow to your outlet by pressing the "Reset" button.

Areas Where GFCI Outlets Are Required

Since 1971, building codes have required GFCI outlets in homes. These outlets were initially mandated to use for swimming pool equipment and along exterior walls surrounding a pool. Today, building codes require GFCI outlets in many other areas in and around your home, especially where the risk of electrical shock is higher because of possible exposure to water and other factors. You are required to install GFCI outlets in the following areas:

  • Pool and spa areas (since 1971)
  • Your home’s exterior (since 1973)
  • Bathrooms (since 1975)
  • Kitchen countertops (since 1987)
  • Unfinished basements and crawlspaces (since 1990)
  • Wet bars (since 1993)
  • Utility and laundry sinks (since 2005)

What Are GFCI Outlets’ Limitations?

Mr. Electric of Central Iowa proudly installs GFCI outlets as one of our many electrical services to households throughout Des Moines. However, these outlets do have limitations you need to know. You should never use a GFCI outlet as a receptacle for a refrigerator or freezer. The electromagnetic interference these appliances can generate will trip these outlets and cut off power flow. GFCI outlets are incompatible with most stoves and dryers because these heavy-duty appliances require 240-amp power outlets. Hair dryers, irons, toaster ovens, and some other small appliances with heating elements can trip GFCI outlets. Finally, you will trip a GFCI outlet by connecting an extension cord and plugging in too many devices to it.

Upgrade With Mr. Electric of Central Iowa

Many older homes have spent years or decades without GFCI outlets, endangering their occupants with increased electrical shock risks. If your home needs GFCI outlet installation, don’t wait to contact Mr. Electric of Central Iowa. We work quickly and carefully to install electrical outlets correctly the first time, and waiting only prolongs your home and family’s exposure to potential damage and injuries. GFCI outlets are inexpensive and potentially life-saving devices. Our technicians will work with you to ensure your home meets the latest building code requirements while keeping you and your electronics safe. Contact us today to schedule an installation or replacement at your home.