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Reasons a GFCI Outlet Won’t Reset

Why gfci outlet wont reset

There can be several reasons why a GFCI also know as a ground fault circuit interrupter outlet won't reset. One common cause is a ground fault on the hot wire, which occurs when there is a leakage of electrical current path to ground. This can happen due to damaged wiring, a faulty appliance, or even moisture after a rain in the vicinity of the outlet.

Another possible reason is a tripped circuit breaker. If the GFCI outlet is connected to a circuit that has experienced an overload or short circuit, the breaker may have been tripped to protect the electrical system. In this case, resetting the breaker should solve the issue or pressing the test button on the gfci protected outlet.

Sometimes, a GFCI outlet wont reset simply because it has reached the end of its lifespan. Like any other electrical component, outlets can wear out over time and become less responsive. In such cases, replacing or remove the outlet with a new one is the best solution.

Additionally, it's important to check if there are any downstream outlets connected to the outlet. If any of these outlets are faulty or have a ground fault, it can prevent the outlet from resetting. Disconnecting these downstream outlets and attempting to reset the outlet again might help identify the problem.

Lastly, it's worth mentioning that some GFCI outlets have a "test" button that, when pressed, intentionally trips the outlet to ensure it is functioning properly. If the outlet won't reset after you press the reset button, or if the outlet blinking red it could indicate a more serious issue that requires a local professional electrician with installing an fault circuit interrupter outlet. We always recommend going to your main electrical panel to turn off the power to prevent electric shock.

In any case, if you are unsure about the cause of the GFCI outlet not resetting or if you are uncomfortable working with electrical components, it is always recommended to call an electrician. They have the expertise to diagnose and fix the problem safely.

Required Locations Of GFCI Outlets

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlets are an essential safety feature in any home or building. These outlets are designed to protect against electrical shock by quickly shutting off power when a ground fault is detected. While GFCI outlets are required by law in certain locations, it is important to understand where they should be installed for maximum safety. In this article, we will discuss the required locations of outlets and provide some safety tips for installation.

Required Locations

According to the National Electrical Code (NEC), requires GFCI outlets in the following locations:


Bathrooms are considered a high-risk area for electrical shock due to the presence of water. Therefore, all electrical outlets in bathrooms must be GFCI protected. This includes outlets within 6 feet an close proximity of a sink, as well as any outlets near a bathtub or shower.


Kitchens are another high-risk area for electrical shock due to the presence of water and the use of appliances. All outlets in kitchens must be GFCI protected, including those above countertops and within 6 feet of a sink.

Laundry Rooms

Laundry rooms are also considered high-risk areas due to the use of water and electrical appliances. All outlets in laundry rooms must be GFCI protected, including those near sinks and washing machines.


Garages are often used for power tools and other electrical equipment that conduct electricity, making them a potential hazard for electrical shock. All outlets in garages must be GFCI protected, including those near sinks and any outlets that are within 6 feet of the garage door.

Outdoor Areas

Outdoor outlets are also required to be GFCI protected, as they are exposed to the elements and can pose a risk of electrical shock. This includes outlets on decks, patios, and near pools or hot tubs.

Safety Tips for Installation

When installing GFCI outlets, it is important to follow these safety tips:

  • Always turn off the power before installing an outlet.
  • Use a voltage tester to ensure the power is off before beginning installation.
  • Ensure there is a ground wire on the electrical circuit.
  • Follow the manufacturer's instructions for proper installation.
  • Test the outlet after installation to ensure it is working correctly.
  • If you are unsure about installation, it is best to hire a licensed electrician.


GFCI outlets are an important safety feature that should be installed in specific locations to protect against electrical shock. By following the NEC guidelines and taking proper safety precautions during installation, you can ensure the safety of your home or building. If you have any questions or concerns about outlets, it is always best to consult a licensed electrician for assistance.

Contact Titus Electrical Services for GFCI Repair

Installing and repairing GFCI outlets is different than with standard outlets in your home. Our experienced Fort Collins electrician can determine the reason why your outlet won’t reset. Our expert will check if it’s correctly installed and if any repairs are necessary. When it can’t be fixed, our team will replace the outlet for you and ensure it works safely. To get started today, call 303-915-5771 and we’ll send a licensed electrician to troubleshoot, diagnose, and repair the problem.