GFI= Ground Fault Interrupt

Two KITCHEN outlets (one GFI the other non-GFI) are on the same circuit (I believe). The non GFI circuit stopped working and I noticed the GFI unit will not reset and automatically pop. The disposal in the sink stopped working and is leaking water. If the water leak is causing a short,

shouldn't a circuit breaker trip?
can the GFI circuit somehow shutdown other outlet nodes on the same circuit?

From a troubleshooting standpoint, wouldn't electrically disconnecting the disposal be the first step and try to reset the GFI and test both outlets?

UPDATE: The electrical leads to the disposal were disconnected and the GFI was reset. Outlet tests (with a light bulb) indicate power restored to affected outlets. I appreciate every good response below and would upvote them if I had the privilege (not enough points today).

I believe that when the breaker is tripped, it will show bright orange (not the case in this photo):

enter image description here

4 Answers 4


Yes -- GFCIs are provided with a set of LOAD terminals so that other receptacles, light fixtures, or hard-wired devices can be connected in a way that provides them GFCI protection as well. It is common to see this used so that one GFCI protects several receptacles -- there are even "dead front" GFCI devices that have no receptacles themselves, but are solely intended to protect "downstream" loads.

  • I agree and it wont trip the breaker. Water dripping down the disposal could be the cause for the trip of the GFCI. Unplug and see it the GFCI will reset. those are square D breakers and yes they usually have a Orange flag in the window when they trip.+
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Sep 6, 2016 at 23:06
  • @EdBeal: Good call: disposal is now disconnected from circuit, GFCI resets and outlets now provide power. Thanks
    – gatorback
    Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 2:11

Yes. It is fairly common that all countertop outlets in a kitchen are connected to one GFCI outlet, then run to the breaker from there. When we redid our kitchen that is how we set our array up.


Today I was informed that the newer GFCI receptacles using something called a "smart lock" will not reset until you've gone to the panel and turned off the entire circuit for about a minute. If you are still having issues, even if the breaker does not appear tripped, try doing this at the panel (go ahead and turn it off, wait a minute, flip it back on), then try to reset the GFCI again.


Years late, but the disposal should be on it's own circuit.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.