Kitchen splits

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Posted by: from Kitchener
1/19/2018 at 5:44:03 PM

What exactly does that mean "change kitchen outlets back to splits" ? thanks

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Date/Time1/20/2018 at 8:57:52 AM

Split means that there are 2 circuits connected to your kitchen receptacles. Normal split receptacles the top slot of duplex receptacle is different from the bottom. These circuits have 3 wires black and red are meant 2 hot legs of 2 circuits and they share common neutral which is the white.

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Robert from ElecTriLight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time1/20/2018 at 9:58:03 AM

It sounds like someone has changed regular kitchen outlets to gfci outlets the cheap way by simply changing the receptacle with a gfci receptacle from the hardware store. This removes the 2nd circuit from that outlet and goes back to 1960 when one receptacle was on the counter in a kitchen powering a small mixer or toaster. This is an illegal installation as it allows 2 heavy appliances plugged into one fuse only, overloading it.

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Wayne in Kitchener
Date/Time1/22/2018 at 9:35:21 AM

Thanks Robert ...your observation it seems is correct some point the kitchen was renovated with that result....what type of receptacle is best suited in this case ? thanks again.

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Date/Time1/23/2018 at 6:54:39 PM

Hello Wayne

We seem to be seeing this a lot these days; people think they are being safer by installing a 15 amp GFCI on an old split receptacle circuit. While it could provide protection if done correctly, most cases it is not and causes stress on the electrical system.

There are two options, change the receptacle back to the code compliant installation of a standard split receptacle (using a standard receptacle) or install a new 20 amp GFCI circuit and receptacle. If you really feel that you need GFCI protection, then there are options for a correct installation, but my recommendation would be to go the 20 amp route.


John Kuehnl-cadwell

Master Electrician

Datawise Solutions Inc

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