When you are updating the electrics in your house so that they are up to code and in better shape, there are a lot of changes that you may see being made. That can include things like updating certain outlets so that they are GFCI outlets.
So, what are GFCI outlets? GFCI is short for ground fault circuit interrupter. The way that the electrics in your house is set up is that the house is one large circuit that is filled with several smaller and then smaller circuits. A circuit is essentially a circle. As long as the circle is complete, the circuit is active. But, if anything happens that breaks that circle, the circuit stops being able to work. The circle that is your house's circuit actually starts at the meter, but for more practical uses, it really starts working at the fuse or circuit box. When the circuit breaker is turned on, everything works. When the circuit breaker is tripped because of an overload or other issue, then the circuit that is attached to it turns off. A circuit that is attached to the circuit breaker can cover one room, depending on the size of the room and how many outlets it has. For example, your bathroom may be one circuit. However, larger rooms will have their own circuits as will larger appliances. Each power socket is going to be its own circuit. As soon as you plug something in, that circuit is completed. If the outlet gets overloaded, that circuit will work its way through other circuits and eventually to the circuit breaker to trip the breaker. It generally happens within seconds. A GFCI outlet has a circuit breaker built in. If something happens to that circuit, the GFCI instantly trips, shutting down the circuit.
GFCI Outlet Installation
Ideally, GFCI outlets should be installed anywhere that the outlet may be exposed to moisture. That means they should be in your kitchen, your bathroom, outdoor outlets, and basement outlets. Moisture can get into the outlets and trip the circuits or something could happen to something plugged into that outlet. The outlet will instantly turn off. That will let you figure out what is going on and be able to fix the outlet. Then you can just push the button on the outlet and reset the outlet.
If you are updating your electrics, make sure to talk to the electrician about GFCI outlets. Visit a site like http://www.jfelectricalcontractors.com for more help.