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Watch How to Install a GFCI Electrical Outlet Like a Pro

I kidnapped my electrician.

And we filmed 4 hours of video tutorials.

Today is the first video and he’s going to show you how to install a GFCI electrical outlet.

If you don’t watch Bill’s tips you’ll miss out (not only on his genius but the cool giveaway).

How often do see a professional licensed electrician perform his craft?

Not often enough.

Plus, there’s a big update to GFCIs you should know about…


When you see a tradesman in action you learn a ton.

I’ve gotten help from Bill White for over 8 years.

Bill’s the type of guy who’s a life-long learner (he actually started his career with Intel) and cares about his customers.

Bill and Jeff

For these reasons I nominated him for Klein’s Electrician of the Year.

As you can tell from the pic, we had a fun time making this video.

A few weeks back I learned about a new electrical requirement.

The folks from UL, Underwriters Laboratories, mandated all new GFCIs to be self-testing by the end of June 2015.


Do you test your GFCI every month?

You should but don’t feel bad if you forget.  Most people (including your’s truly) do this.

GFCI outlets protect you from being shocked.

They save lives.

I don’t want to get shocked while flat ironing or blow drying my daughter’s hair.

Yes I actually do this kind of stuff for both my daughters πŸ˜€

If your GFCI isn’t working properly it can’t protect you.

Pressing the “Test” and “Reset” is the easiest way to ensure the GFCI is functional.

If the Test button doesn’t pop back out then you know the mechanics of the GFCI are broken and the outlet should be replaced.

But again, who does this?

Here’s whereΒ Leviton’sΒ new SmartlockPro Self-Testing GFCI comes in handy.

It does the Test and Reset for you.

SmartlockPro GFCI

Electrical Traps Most Homeowners Fall Into (and how to avoid them)

We all fall into the first trap: Not feeling like we have the skills to do electrical work.

Don’t fret, after you watch Bill you’ll avoid this trap along with several others.

He’ll show you what to do step-by-step.

Before we start lets remember the First Rule of electrical: turn off the power to your circuit at the electric panel or fuse box

Turn Off Electricity

Let’s jump into the video so you can see Bill in action

What’s Next

Hopefully today’s GFCI tips help you with your project. It’s always great to see how an electrician installs devices!!

If you’re doing a bathroom remodel and need help, join one of our online courses – they’ll make your bathroom renovation much easier!

Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to help.

Thanks as always for reading, watching and making our Do-It-Yourself community the coolest ever.



GFCI Outlet Installation

  1. robb cape says:


    thank you for another awesome video….. I always get helpful nuggets from you. We are doing our back splash in our kitchen and will be replacing the outlets and switches so your timing is impeccable and while we are at it im going to change the light switches in the bathrooms, laundry room and my garage with the Leviton ODS10-ID Decora 120/277-Volt Wall Switch Occupancy Sensor, ….have your ever used these switches?…. thanks again

    Robb in Detroit!

    1. Love occupancy sensors Robb, I totally recommend them. Our laundry room has one and we haven’t had any issues. You’re gonna be busy installing those GFCIs my friend. Glad you liked the video πŸ˜€

  2. Martin says:

    As always brilliant stuff! I also have kitchen back splash project in the works and would definitely update the outlets at the same time. These would be indeed handy.


    1. Thanks Martin and good for you to know the kitchen needs the GFCIs. You and Robb should partner together on those backsplashes, haha. Make sure you post some pics over in the Home Repair Tutor community πŸ˜€

      We’d love to see your progress or before/after photos

  3. Mike S. says:

    Great information. I was especially interested in the installation of the GFCI in locations above 36 inches from the floor. That is really a great idea.

    1. Bill has so many tips…it’s crazy awesome for all of us. I can’t wait to publish the other videos and get his stuff over on Bathroom Repair Tutor. Glad you like today’s post onf GFCIs πŸ˜€

  4. Susan Malone says:

    I redid my kitchen about 7 years ago, new wiring and appliances, countertops, floors – the whole works. I thought I had GFCIs installed and learned about two weeks ago they were not. Definitely not safe! Would love to update!

    1. Your outlets might still be GFCI protected Susan if they are connected to a single GFCI somewhere else in the house. Although it would be nice to have the actual GFCI outlets in the kitchen πŸ˜€

  5. Adam Verheyen says:

    We are remodeling our kitchen in the next few months and winning some GFCIs would help save money, while not a lot any and all savings are appreciated! Once again, great video Jeff.

    1. Thanks Adam, you and the Mrs. are super busy. First the tiling project and now the kitchen, holy smoke. I know what you mean about the cost savings. These GFCIs can add up πŸ˜€

  6. Cornelia says:

    Very helpful video and will use as a reference for future use. We noticed Bill installed the outlet with what we call the prong facing up. All of the electrical outlets in our house were wired like this. We considered this upside down. Is there a right and wrong facing way when installing an outlet?

    1. Good question Cornelia, he installed the GFCI this way because NEC (National Electrical Code) requires it. The thinking is that if someone drops a utensil it will hopefully strike the ground prong first and not hot or neutral.

  7. Fred Bertolini says:

    Good advice
    I have had older GFCI outlets that were too tight in the box.
    This looks like a good design.
    I am off to test the ones I have
    Fred In Toronto

    1. Yah, the slim profile of the new Leviton GFCIs is nice. Especially if you have older electrical boxes. Let me know if the tests come back good Fred.

  8. Dave Pullen says:

    Great video; am getting ready to install GFCI’s in my kitchen to meet Code. One suggestion: if/when you shoot an update, I encourage you to have the electrician show proper connections for downline outlets as well.

    1. Thanks Dave, I actually have a video for downstream connections on Bathroom Repair Tutor. It’s pretty straight forward but you need to discern the difference between the Load and Line wires. You’ll just have two extra wires in the box that connect the GFCI to other outlets downstream.

  9. Steve Surry says:

    My daughter moved back home and will commute from my house to college, and I am renovating the downstairs bedroom and bathroom for her, and the GFCI would come in handy, especially because her bathroom also happens to house our washer and dryer!

    1. Oh boy, you certainly want a GFCI for this project Steve. You’re such a good day for remodeling the bedroom and bathroom at the same time. Please keep us posted on your projects and share your tips over on the HRT Facebook community

      We’d love to see your photos

  10. Roger says:

    I’m going to be doing a bathroom remodel and this would be a must have. Great video.

    1. Thanks Roger, what kind of bathroom remodel are you doing?

  11. Laura says:

    This would make a big improvement in my master bathroom redo. I did not know that you needed to have self testing GFCI’s. Thanks for that important info.

    1. My pleasure to help out Laura. Yah, self-testing GFCIs are pretty great because they won’t work if they fail the Test/Reset process πŸ˜€

  12. Red Sox '04 says:

    love the self testing feature ! Slowly replacing all the outlets in our home.

    1. Slow is better than nothing πŸ˜€

  13. Susan Cralle says:

    Thanks Jeff. And thanks Bill for the tips and code requirements. Would love to win newer GFCI outlets to update the older one in my home. And place the new ones where there aren’t any now (but should be)! Great video as usual!

    1. Thanks so much Susan, the newer GFCIs are so much nicer than the older versions. Slimmer and self-testing…you can’t go wrong.

  14. Carl says:

    Great practical advice about electrical outlet installation. I would install one in my kitchen to bring it to code.

    1. Glad to hear you have code in mind Carl. Do you just have one outlet in the kitchen?

  15. Ingrid says:

    Well done video. Thanks Jeff and Bill. I would install this GFCI in an old bath that lacks one. This would be a great win.

    1. I’m starting to find out that a lot of homes don’t have GFCIs in the bathroom. Good for you Ingrid for getting your bathroom to code πŸ˜€

      Gotta be safe

  16. Fred says:

    We are doing a complete remodel of our condo kitchen. This tutorial for GFI’s could not be more timely. I am literally on my way to Lowe’s and will pick one up today!

    1. Awesome Fred!!

      Please let us know if you have any questions. We’d be happy to help.

      Feel free to share your tips on the remodel with out HRT Facebook Group, we’d love to see your photos πŸ˜€

  17. Dorth says:

    I love your blog. I saw the video and will use the GFCI when my son is installing my new backsplash. Thanks a lot.

    1. Boy, you and few other fans are doing backsplashes at the same time Dorth.

      We’d love to see you photos over on the HRT Facebook Community

      Any advice you have on backsplashes would be well received as people want to know what to look out for πŸ˜€

  18. Sandra Little says:

    I really enjoy your tutorials. I purchased an old home and there are no GFI’s in my house. I would like to replace the one in the bathroom, kitchen and laundry at least. I think after the tutorial that I can install them myself. I sure would like to try.

  19. Troy G says:

    I seem ot replace alot fo outlets… all my plug ins fall out and dont grab the plug very well. About 30 more outlets to go in my house!

  20. David G says:

    Great tutorial and good timing. I am about to redo a kitchen and these sure would come in handy.

  21. Terri Hughes says:

    I would use the GFI in my bathroom. I love that it is self testing, because not many people remember to do that. Thank you for the great video and thanks to Bill White for showing us how to install the GFI safely. He made it look so easy. Thanks again!

  22. Tommy Gallagher says:

    I’m remodeling my laundry room, with fresh paint, new floor and cabinets. I would like to bring the GFCI’s up to current standards.

  23. Gilda says:

    I would love to have this to try out in my kitchen or bathroom area. I have Great Grand children that I am concerned for. This sounds like a good product. P.S The tutorial was great, simple to understand and visually understandable. Thank you.

  24. David Poirier says:

    Thank you very much for the info I now feel more secure in installing my next CGFI outlet

  25. C Standley says:

    Great video! I have recently bought a “new” old home. New to me that is. So far it looks like the electrical is pretty old and crummy. I’ll be putting some of these in, so a few free ones would be great.

  26. Alberto says:

    I hope my finger can trip them. Builder didn’t mention to test once a month. Add that to the honey do list.

  27. dan says:

    I’ll use one SmartLock Pro Self-Testing GFCIs for bathroom to fill one of the 3 gang boxes. (The other bank has switches for fan/heater/light on ceiling and last bank is the separate vanity mirror light switch.) The other 2-SmartLock Pro Self-Testing GFCIs will go for 2 separate kitchen counter circuits.

  28. Char says:

    Jeff- Brilliant! Gives me the courage now–no more calling electrician. Clear and detailed enough even for me.
    Thank you once again!
    Daughter bought old home with bathroom totally gutted. Without any experience and learning all the way–this gift would be a great encouragement!
    I already wrote, but says java script not working–hoping you receive–
    [because important question: although I file all your emails–I cannot find the one with the spider spray–They are invading and I am being bitten often. Could you please send that info as I am also unable to find it on your site. Appreciate tons]

  29. Tim says:

    Hey Jeff,

    My parents own a home in NYC which is over 100 years old. In homes like this it is crucial to protect yourself in every possible way. They currently have outlets on the exterior of the house that I was planning on replacing with GFCI’s because currently it looks like they simply have normal outlets in waterproof casings. These casings, like the house, look very old. I want to help protect my parents as best as I can and they are in dire need of replacements. This video was very useful and will help me in this mini project. Thank Jeff!


  30. Robert in CSG says:

    I have a house that was built before GFI outlets were invented. Three would be a good start.

  31. John says:

    Great and helpful video. Just bought an older home a few months ago and local electricians don’t like to show up or call back, so i’m going to have to do the small stuff on my own. This video should be very useful!!


  32. David Nelson says:

    Thanks Jeff for another great video. I have a 10 year old house here in Hemet,ca. and we do have the old GFI outlets. Testing, well huh, I probably haven’t tested them 10 times. Did today though. I always have wondered about the outlets being installed upside down, now I know why.

  33. Chip says:

    Great video! Now I want to replace the outlets in kitchen and bathrooms!

  34. waykno says:

    Around here, code is, or used to be, a GFCI required if outlet was within 6 feet of a water outlet. I’ve always thought the simple pressing of the test/reset button only showed the buttons worked, so I always tested with an outlet tester w/ a GFCI button on it causing the plug-in to click the button off πŸ˜€

  35. waykno says:

    One more thing–unless I missed it, I didn’t hear any explanation of the GFCI acronym, often called GFI. For the benefit of those who may not know, it is–ground fault circuit interrupter.

  36. Jeff Moser says:

    I have a GFCI outside by the deck that kicks out every time it rains. I’m planning on replacing it and the weatherproof cover. Would be great to use one of these new GFCIs from Leviton. Thanks for the great videos!

  37. Ron McGill says:

    Great video with useful, basic tips for us non-electricians. I would have liked an inclusion though on a way to determine which are your line and load wires. Usually, the GFCI outlets that I have seen have the load wires present. If you are replacing a standard plug with a GFCI, you will need to know which wire is line and which is load. Thanks for the video.

  38. Dave S. says:

    Jeff, thanks for the great info you provide. You kept me from making a mistake or two.

    Jeff and Bill, thanks for the great video. Great information to have. I especially appreciate the explanation for ‘which side goes up and when’. I’ve heard many discussions about it. If selected as a winner, I would remove my current GFCI breaker. While it’s out, I would replace the breaker protected bathroom and kitchen outlets with the new ones then replace the old GFCI breaker.

  39. Rick Stebbins says:

    Will be adding GFI’s to bathroom in home purchased to protect from shock. Great video on tips to bend wire and strip with lineman’s plyers

  40. Pablo says:

    I love your videos! Soaking up all that advice is refreshing. My house was built in the 20s and needs some love. I’d definitely replace my bathrooms existing recepticals with those new gfci’s

  41. Mary Taylor says:


    Again, PERFECT Timing!! I have a GFCI Plug in my garage that keeps tripping! I’m sure it’s all my power tools, but I’m not 100% sure. This helps a great deal. Thanks again for all your great videos!

    Mary T.

  42. Lee Stephens says:

    Like the thought of self test. I test regularly but not with any consistency. These would
    certainly provide peace of mind.

  43. lisa mcfarland says:

    adding wall speakers in the kitchen and this will come in handy

  44. Benjamin says:

    First-time home buyer here and just getting started less than a week ago. GFCI outlets are on my list for both the kitchen and bathrooms. Recently found your site and your tips on removing carpet have already come in handy.

  45. Larry Crumley says:

    Great video once again. Made that small part of home repair look easy and safe. I have two outdoor gfci sockets to replace. Anything different to watch for when replacing those?

  46. Jerry Herrman says:

    I will use this GFCI the next time I change out an outlet in my bathroom.

  47. This is a great advancement in outlets. I would like to install them in our bathrooms for the protection they would provide to our grandchildren when staying overnight with us.
    Thank you. Dave L.

  48. Mike Whaley says:

    This vedio was straight forward to the point and easy to follow. You really make all of us better DIYers and thanks for the chance to win.

  49. Chuck Schroeder says:

    Very informative video. I have a gfci in the bathroom. It works for a couple days and then it trips. It’s been on my “need to fix” list for quite a while. I’m going to try to see why this happens. If I can’t figure it out, need new one.

  50. Craig Donnelly says:

    Just bought 1 GFCI and two downstream outlets for roughing in a 20 amp circuit in my complete, back to the studs, bath demo/redo. I’d rather have the self testing GFCI!!

  51. Kelli says:

    Nifty…replacing old plugs in my old house–laundry room!

  52. Susan Tarsikes says:

    I’m looking to remodel my bathroom. A GFCI Plug would be the icing on the cake. Would bring the bathroom up to date and keep the house safe!

  53. Michael says:

    This was a great video. We recently just purchased our first house, and we need to install a new GFCI in one of the bathrooms (the ones that our sons will be using), because the home inspection report revealed that it is no longer working properly.

    Your video checked the first box of this project… namely, arming me with the information and knowledge needed to do the project. Winning this contest would check the last box of the project… namely, getting a great GFCI from a trusted source.

  54. Janet says:

    Really appreciated the video, especially the tip about putting the ground up and why. Makes so much sense. I am in the process of replacing all the outlets in my home with ones that meet the current codes. So would love to win a few of the huge number that I am going to need. Thanks for the opportunity. Keep these videos coming.

  55. kit says:

    I am 71 years old. Have learned a lot about doing my own house repair and am still learning. Love your videos. Just realized that my GFCIs are not self testing and am going to replace them all. Thanks for helping me stay in the know.

  56. Alisan says:

    I inherited my grandmother’s home and am gradually improving it room-by-room. I have three bathrooms, a laundry room and a kitchen all in need of GFCI’s. The house is old enough that there are NO GFCI’s of any kind in these rooms, let alone self-testing ones! Would love to win a Self-Testing GFCI from Leviton to get the party started! Thanks for the opportunity!

  57. Andria Conyers says:

    We are currently doing the electric on a foreclosure we are living in. I’ll have no problem finding a place to install the GFCIs.

  58. Luis says:

    Hi Jeff,
    The outlet in my bathroom stop working long time ago, I have not replace it yet.
    To make matters worse I have to remove the toilet to find a leak inside the wall behind the toilet from a copper pipe and also I have to remove all the floor as it is vinyl and the water is everywhere.
    Cutting a piece of sheetrock behind the toilet is a new experience, I’m not a handyman.
    I have a lot to do now little by little.
    If I win the SmartlockPro I will definitely install it in my bathroom , I did not know how important it is to have such smart device like the Smartlockpro.
    Thank you so much for your help with all those wonderful and helpful videos.

  59. Hugo Villahermosa says:

    Soon I’m going to start working on my master bathroom, changing everything from light fixture to electrical outlets, ventilation fan and more. I would like to have these GFCI for my project.

    Thank you

    1. Thanks Hugo, and super cool to hear you’ll be working on your master bathroom.

      You’d like our videos series on bathroom remodeling.

      Here’s the link

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