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Small GFCI outlet

CaseyR's picture

Both my mom's house and my house, each circa 1960, have older outlet boxes that are too shallow for a standard GFCI. The boxes have the top and bottom that go in a little over an inch and then have a 45 degree slope section down to the back, which is probably less than two inches high (don't have one in front of me here...) A standard GFCI hits the sloped sections and stops the standard GFCI from going all the way in, so it stands out about 3/16th of an inch. Does anyone know of a GFCI outlet that can fit these older outlets? I asked at my usual electrical supply house and they just sort of shrugged. I would prefer not having to tear the wall up to remove and replace these old boxes. And, yeah, I realize that they are probably undersized by current code, but they are on 15 amp circuits and I assume they are grandfathered in if I can find a GFCI that will fit. On a different circuit, I put in a GFCI breaker in the panel but I would prefer to put them in the wall so I don't have to go outside to reset them when they are tripped.

Thanks, Casey

Don't know of any small-sized (post #183031, reply #1 of 5)

Don't know of any small-sized GFCIs, but you have several other options:

1) Put in a GFCI breaker on the circuit(s) involved.

2) Get a box extender that "bumps" the box out about a half inch. Obviously, this "look" may or may not work in your case.

3) Surgically remove the box and install a larger "old work" box. Not really as hard as it sounds, and no repair of the surface required (if you're lucky).


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Casey, Welcome to my world! (post #183031, reply #2 of 5)

Casey,

Welcome to my world! I see a lot of older housing with this situation. GFIs are all pretty much the same dimension. I usually replace the box. However, Arlington Industries has just announced a box extender that projects from the wall about 5/8", which would provide 5 cu inches and probably enough space for a GFI receptacle in most of the old 14 cu in boxes.

Here's the link: http://www.aifittings.com/whnew146.htm

Good luck,

Cliff

If a box extention is used, (post #183031, reply #3 of 5)

If a box extention is used, could the original box be pushed back flush to the wall? An old box could be a pain to remove if it's also got junctions in it.

sbsmith49

I think that would be hard to (post #183031, reply #4 of 5)

I think that would be hard to accomplish, and I doubt that there's an extension designed for that duty.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

I just installed an exstender (post #183031, reply #5 of 5)

I just installed an exstender on a double gange box and I went with a plastic one.
The reason I chose plastic is beacause the sides on the receptical won't short out on it.
You would have to put somthing under the exstender for it to seat on.
Then there is the cover not sitting against the drywall.
Is there a cover that would work with a recpetical that is 3/16"-1/4" proud?

______________________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________________ There are three kinds of men: The one that learns by reading, the few who learn by observation and the rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves. Will Rogers