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Freezer plugged into gfci.


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I get a call from a realtor that uses my services and she said that a home owner called her complaining that several gfci outlets tripped. Her deep freezer was plugged into one of those gfci's and she lost around 600 dollars worth of food. I did an inspection on the house 8 days prior to her discovery. She is blaming me for not resetting the gfci and wants me to be accountable. Since the inspection we have had several days of lightning strikes. When I test gfci's I always reset them and test them to see if they come back on. I don't know if I should accept the accusation and pay for her loss.

Any suggestions?

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The HI always get blamed. I had the same thing happen to me many years ago, except in my case the freezer was plugged into an extension cord connected to a garage light fixture. Someone turned off the switch. I did not think it was me. The buyer and Realtor were in the garage after me.

I suggested that the owner file a claim on the insurance policy, which I think they did. I ended up doing a free HI for the owner to cover the deductible.

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If you're certain that you left them on, you shouldn't pay for the food.

If you think that you might have left them off, then offer to pay for the food but insist on an inventory. Tell them that your company requires it.

There have been times when I would have sworn that I reset a GFCI, but when I, in fact, forgot to. It happens. You might consider a post-inspection checklist for things like this, just to assist your memory. It helps to frame a convincing argument when issues like this come up.

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I'm willing to bet that the agent was assisting the buyer in pointing the finger at the inspector as the guilty party.

What Jim said.

Marc

Edit: shouldn't HIs write up GFCI's behind refrigerators as not needed? Nuisance trips could result in loss of refrigerated food. That may have helped the OP.

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while i agree with Mark about nuisance trip reporting owners are the ones that plugged the unit into the gfci in first place & seldom see the entire report

around here most only get a punchlist of the big ticket items attempting to be negotiated

as cheap as digital film is ;~))

since inception it's become a "for the record" habit of mine to take pix of all refers/freezers at the completion of the inspection with doors open showing the lights operating regardless of their location

pix are filed away for any future calls...saved my bacon more than once

never paid for a melted ice cube let alone a years supply of grub as most claims i hear of

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It's not hard or complicated to test and rest a gfci. It's not like walking away while waiting for a tub to fill and flooding the house. You probably did just what you thought you did.

If I thought I reset it, I'd stick with my thought. Like Reinmiller said, the HI always gets blamed.

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I'm willing to bet that the agent was assisting the buyer in pointing the finger at the inspector as the guilty party.

What Jim said.

Marc

Edit: shouldn't HIs write up GFCI's behind refrigerators as not needed? Nuisance trips could result in loss of refrigerated food. That may have helped the OP.

While the older codes allowed this arrangement , the newer code has removed this exception. If the gfi is tripping it is protecting someone's life, not the food.

Not quite sure why people are more concerned with food than a human life.

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