electrical question for jetted tub

Discussion in 'Shower & bathtub Forum & Blog' started by cheakamus, Jun 27, 2012.

  1. cheakamus

    cheakamus New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    I am installing a Hydro Systems jetted tub with in-line heater in my upstairs bathroom remodel. The tub requires a dedicated 110v 20 amp GFCI-protected electrical circuit for the pump and an additional dedicated 110v 20 amp GFCI-protected circuit for the heater. Does it make any difference whether I use a couple of cheap GFCI outlets at the tub or install more expensive GFCI breakers at the panel? The only reason I hesitate to install the breakers is that they each require 2 slots in the panel and I am getting toward the end of available slots in my 200 amp service panel. Are the breakers any more durable than the outlets?
  2. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,246
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    Not sure about your panel, but I've installed GFCI and AFCI breakers in Square-D panels and they do not require 2 slots.

    A good quality GFCI receptacle would be less expensive and provide the same protection. There are a lot of junk receptacles out there.
  3. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple I love these ACO Shower Drains - Best in Class

    Messages:
    4,122
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    It's easier I think reseting and testing the GFI's at the panel. Maybe run your new home runs into the panel with a loop of excess so one day if you need to expand you can unloop the excess cable and run that to a new sub panel. Make sure there is at least one free slot left after the changes.

    And you might find some double breakers and possibly partner up a few of the 15AMP or 20AMP breakers....

    JW
  4. cheakamus

    cheakamus New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Thanks, Cacher Chick and John. I did some checking on line, but it appears that for my service panel (GE), one-inch, i.e., double-slot, GFCI breakers are the only ones available. I had a poke around at Home Depot today, and I think what I'm going to do is buy a couple of blank-face GFCI receptacles (available in white only, for some reason) and install those inside a cupboard next to the bath so that they're easily accessible. I'll use a regular circuit breaker at the panel and run wiring from the blank GFCIs to a couple of single receptacles under the bath (where they're not so accessible — I plan to have an access panel in the cupboard to get at the whirlpool motor, but it'll require removing some shelves and unscrewing the panel).
    Thank you both for your help!
  5. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,246
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    Sounds like a good plan to me.
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,615
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    I put a GFCI receptacle in the area of the tub, then use the "load terminals" to feed the outlet at the pump. This way, if it should "nuisance trip", which it probably will, you do not have to go outside to reset it.
  7. cheakamus

    cheakamus New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Yes, that's the idea of the blank-face GFCI receptacles in the cupboard (I want them easily accessible in case they trip, but I really don't want to have to look at them).

    In all, I figure I'm going to need 4 separate circuits in this bathroom. In my downstairs bathroom, which I remodeled last year, I needed only one 20 amp GFCI-protected circuit for the entire thing — heated floor, exhaust fan, shaving outlet, and lights — but it is a much smaller space and no tub.
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2012
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