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debtoews

Gfi's And Rain!

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Any advice on how to keep the show from stopping? Its rained on and off here for the past couple of weeks and I cant get the show going becaxue the GFI' keep tripping. I have baby safe caps on the plugs ends that are open- the rest are closed end vampire plugs- this is FRUSTATING!

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Get your plugs off the ground.

Those mini trees I see on your web sight... Are those on wire frames? If so, get them off the ground. They are probably the most likely cause. A little water on the back of a light socket near the frame and they will trip. Set them up on a piece of wood or PVC.

By the way, nice looking display.

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A big tent. Seriously, it a problem that frustrates many of us. I've been shut down 2 of 5 nights so far because of GFI's tripping. Keep your connections off the ground can be a big help.

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Yep...every light socket and plug off the ground, and whatever you can do to keep the rain off of plugs. The only thing in my display that doesn't trip is the roof...cuz it's the farthest from the ground. Ground is the enemy. lol

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Thanks everyone- I will try and get stuff off the ground with some kind of barrier- thanks for the nice comments on the display-

Merry Christmas!

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I do everything mentioned above ..........Also I put each connection in a sandwich baggie, that helps alot but put them on in such a way as to keep the open end facing down this helps with condensation building up in the bag. Takes a little bit of time but it's worth it I think.

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I think the biggest problem with the moisture is wireframes. A few hundred lilghts in a small package (deer and mini trees), several of these combined on the same circuit really plays havoc. The only way to determine if you have a really bad performed is to disconnect it and see what happens. Like previously stated though, its a combined leakage of the current. But I do feel that some elements are worse than others. Thats about it.

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ok so we moved the wireframes off the ground- still has problems- the neighbor came over who knows more about electricity than us- a few of our home made extension cords were bad and hubby took out the gfi's all together and replaced them with regular sockets...voila- the show works with no problemo's!

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ok so we moved the wireframes off the ground- still has problems- the neighbor came over who knows more about electricity than us- a few of our home made extension cords were bad and hubby took out the gfi's all together and replaced them with regular sockets...voila- the show works with no problemo's!

:unsure: This has the potential to spark :( GFIs are code for a reason. (But I'm glad you are enjoying your display again) ^_^

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basically people are saying the gfi's are designed to keep you safe, something is tripping them that is not safe, so by bypassing the gfi's your letting whatever is tripping it get to the house.

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basically people are saying the gfi's are designed to keep you safe, something is tripping them that is not safe, so by bypassing the gfi's your letting whatever is tripping it get to the house.

+1 Some just don't get it!!

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yes took them out! show runs fine- no one dead..

You'll be fine. I love how people start talking about code but they run SP wire all over their displays...that's ok though because everybody does it - lol!

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You'll be fine. I love how people start talking about code but they run SP wire all over their displays...that's ok though because everybody does it - lol!

Brian: I'm not trying to start a flame war......... But don't you think with all us crazies running thousands of feet of spt cord and using unsealed vampire plugs (across our wet lawns) that should be more of an incentive to use GFI's for the added protection?

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Gene - I'm really not interested in a debate. However, GFCI's are rated in millivolts. As I mentioned above, It's not a functionality issue it's a sensitivity issue. I have been trained in residential wiring, industrial electricity, and 3 phase motor control, and NEC Code. And have been working in the field for over 20 years. I know what works and what doesn't based on actual experience - not a theory. I do consult the NEC book to see what is code and acceptable. I believe that the SP1 wire "newbie" runs is a bigger problem than not using a GFCI. An overloaded length of SP1 lamp cord's insulation will catch on fire before it takes a fuse out.

With that said - do I think you can be "too" safe. No. I like GFCI's but they are SENSITIVE. I still use mostly incan light strings with "local" fuses and the fuses are rated pretty low....so It's not much of a problem. If there is a short - it's going to safely "pop" - way before a breaker will. I personally use electrical tape on EVERY male to female extension cord and light string connection.

What really bothered me more than the code statements is the fact that this person had an electrician come over, and deem it safe, and was excited that the display was working again. But it seems that there is a growing culture at PC, where people are really more concerned with being "right" about something, rather than really being genuinely concerned about someone.

Am I overstating it, or does anyone else see that? I just figure it's about Christmas - and we should be encouraging rather than deprecating. What I said isn't meant offend anyone - it's an observation.

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OK boys...

1- I NEVER had an electrician come over and deem anything safe

2- I am an educated person and understadn the RISK

3- We have over 2 miles of SPT2 cord in the front yard cause the GFI's to trip

4- If someone codes- Im a nurse....I know the outcome and a way to fix if need be

5- we run 100% LED low volatge

Edited by debtoews

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The GFCI is always a hot topic on the forums. I think that I peronally throw the code word out just to make sure that the person reading the post knows that it may, may have a possible safety issue, and the post is IMHO. I sure enjoy reading the posts here on PC for the ideas and even some of the kind hearted banter.

Like previously stated, this hobby has the potential to be deadly and we just want all to be able to put up the display the following year.

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Getting back to the rain problem... it's been raining here in Belgium now for 4,5 days without stopping. But show has been running every night without tripping anything :-)

My solution? ..... Hot glue. Better than silicone and peels off afterwards without any problem. I covered every connection with a plastic (deepfreeze) bag after i sealed the connections with hot glue. I know maybe this sounds weird but it helps me every year and believe me, we are dealing with a lot of rain here in Belgium each year ;-)

Hope this maybe can help.

Best wishes,

Gunther

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The GFCI is always a hot topic on the forums. I think that I peronally throw the code word out just to make sure that the person reading the post knows that it may, may have a possible safety issue, and the post is IMHO. I sure enjoy reading the posts here on PC for the ideas and even some of the kind hearted banter.

Like previously stated, this hobby has the potential to be deadly and we just want all to be able to put up the display the following year.

Well said Dave. I think if someone knows the risks and applies some practical/common sense that it can be safe and fun.

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Well said Dave. I think if someone knows the risks and applies some practical/common sense that it can be safe and fun.

Unfortunately with big government involved your sentence does not apply. I was very leery about writing that post. Too volatile of a topic.

Edited by NH - Dave

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