Good day, We had a fully functional hot tub in our garage (don't ask).

We moved it outside on to a patio of cement patio blocks.

I tapped off the sub panel in the garage that the tube used to be hooked to. I ran 80' of #6-4 wire out to another GFCI sub panel outside the house within sight of the tub.

When I energize the breakers they both pop

I have confirmed that the common and ground are only bonded in the main panel.

If I separate them in the main panel everything works but you can get bit if you touch the water while your barefooted.

I'm attaching a diagram of what I have wired.

enter image description here


I'm stumped, I need some ideas please.!

  • 1
    Are you saying you get a shock touching the water? If so, I'd say you have a ground fault. In which case the breakers are working as designed.
    – Tester101
    Commented Aug 22, 2014 at 4:39
  • 3
    First off, you did NOT need another GFI near the tub, just a means of disconnect. Second, you cannot use cable (your "6/4") for the outside portion of the wiring to a hot tub. You need individual insulated conductors in conduit. The drawing looks basically correct but it's impossible to say from here why you are having a problem. Could be so many things. From your description and story I think it is in your best interest to have a professional check it out. The consequences are just too great to be messing around if you're not 100% sure of what you're doing. Commented Aug 22, 2014 at 11:25
  • "If I separate the breakers it works." You should be using a linked breaker. My best guess is that the legs (phases, aka the two incoming live wires) are reversed at some point along the line. Your tub is either broken, your grounding is faulty or some of the many other connections are questionable. Don't forget to check all the incoming lugs for tightness, at each sub-panel.
    – Mazura
    Commented Oct 1, 2014 at 4:18

1 Answer 1


The correct answer is to call an electrician.....and get rid of that second GFCI. If you are on a forum wondering why you are getting shocked when touching the water, you really shouldn't be doing that electrical youself. Call a professional and have it done right.

  • +1,000,000. If you're getting shocked, and you have to ask, you should not be considering trying to fix it. Stop NOW and get someone who knows what they're doing to deal with it.
    – keshlam
    Commented Oct 1, 2014 at 4:36

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