Can I install a AFCI/GFCI outlet on the same circuit that has a GFCI outlet.

Right now I have the first outlet from the breaker as a GFCI and I want to switch it to a AFCI/GFCI, but that same circuit has an outside weatherized outlet downstream that's also has a GFCI, would I be able to leave the outside GFCI in circuit or would that interfere with the AFCI/GFCI detecting any abnormal fluctuations?


First, keep in mind an AFCI receptacle at the first outlet will not satisfy any legal obligations to fit a GFCI (we discuss that extensively here). However if AFCI is optional for you, then they don't care where you put an AFCI.

As you already know, there is nothing horrible about connecting a GFCI's LINE terminals to the LOAD output of another GFCI. It's merely rather bad form; you are playing a "Yo Dawg" joke on yourself, and this will give you or the subsequent owner fits when they go to reset it. (the GFCI won't reset. You will have to somehow find the other GFCI, reset that, then finally this GFCI will reset. It's a bad scene all around, that ends with many homeowners becoming driven to call an electrician to sort it out, and then paying $150 for information alone.

The right answer is to remove that entirely useless outdoor GFCI receptacle, put a plain receptacle in its place, and then label it (mandatory) GFCI Protected and (optional) Reset at ___.

The GFCI recep can then be re-tasked to protect a circuit that currently has no protection at all.


Sure you can but how much running back and forth do you want to do trying to reset this? I have been called to a home the owner put multiple GFCI’s in and he could not get power to the devices because of tripping. I would not add AFCI protection to an outdoor circuit as these normally are running electric devices with motors , saws, mowers, drills etc. AFCI’s don’t play well with motor loads and if you decide to add that breaker remove the GFCI outlet or you may not have much luck at tools working on that circuit.

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    I had an AFCI trip constantly with a new vacuum cleaner. they really don't like those motor loads. – Jamie M Apr 28 '20 at 14:37

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