GFIs and moisture are always an issue when it’s a wet holiday season. We do pro installations throughout South Florida, so we know firsthand the frustrations of dealing with GFI issues. Here’s a couple of things that can help:
- Make sure all outlets have bubble covers over them.
- Make sure all plug connections are not on the ground where they can sit in water.
- Use a water displacement spray on the female connection anywhere that you plug in. (Such as the females on the tree frame). WD-40 was the original water displacement spray, but it’s a bit dated. So, go with one of the better-quality water displacement sprays.
- After a heavy rain, it can help to put a large fan inside the tree blowing upward to help with air circulation inside. But if it’s not an outdoor rated fan, be sure and not leave it out in the rain.
- Make sure the electrical load does not exceed 80% of the circuit amperage rating. If the circuit is 20 amps, never exceed 16 amps and it’s best if you stay closer to 50%. This will help reduce the GFI tripping significantly.
- Best to use GFI breakers, versus GFI outlets. Less prone to tripping and easier to reset.
- Make sure outlets are above ground level and in a location that they can dry out quickly. If it’s a damp environment, the outlets tend to hold moisture longer, making the GFI difficult to reset.
Make sure any type of irrigation is turned off while the lights/tree is on