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I have a GFCI receptacle that will not reset, and all of the switches -- which are to my garbage disposal, dishwasher, and over-sink light -- will not work. I checked it with a voltage detector after shutting the power off and I still had live wires. How do I get this resolved?

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  • Why are those devices on a GFCI-protected circuit? Motors are normally not GFCI protected for two reasons. One, the voltage spike when they start can trip the GFCI. Two, the purpose of GFCI is to protect you from stuff like dropping an appliance in the water. That won't be happening with a garbage disposal or dishwasher.
    – user4302
    Mar 1 '13 at 2:22
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Is this a new outlet where there was not a GFCI before?

Was the unit working before and suddenly stopped working?

There seem to be too many downstream devices on the load side of the GFCI. I would have expected this list of devices to be on at least 3 circuits. That may explain why there still live circuits after shutoff to the GFCI.

In general, GFCIs won't reset when

  • They are wired incorrectly (power to load terminals)
  • The load side is ground faulted (current leaving the hot side does not fully return on the neutral)
  • The GFCI is faulty

To isolate the GFCI from any downstream problems, disconnect the load terminals and see if it will reset.

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