Do I Need a GFCI Outlet for a Dishwasher?

A kitchen is the center of every home. You can bet that it has the most significant number of electrical appliances than all the other rooms in your home. Take your living room, for example. Compare the power required to power your 4K TV and the necessary energy to power your refrigerator, cooker, dishwasher, and other appliances.

You will notice that the kitchen uses more electric power than any other room. A ground fault is likely to happen with all these appliances in one room. We will discuss how a ground fault occurs later in this article.

To counter these life-threatening faults, have regulations that insist on each device having its GFCI outlet. New kitchens must have several GFCI for every major appliance in some states.

We will dig deeper into why your dishwasher might need a GFCI receptacle.

Is GFCI Protection Required for Dishwashers?

Yes. All dishwashers should have GFCI protection, why you ask!

As said above, ground faults are common where electricity is available. Electricity is carried through wires covered with insulation material like plastic. The same electricity is available for use at home through sockets and outlets.

Other than that, electricity is hazardous. For example, when a faulty wire is present in your wiring, some current might escape from its usual path and find a different conductor. If the available conductor is the human body, a wave of shock will be felt. Suppose there are no circuit interrupters? More electricity will continue passing through the human body, leading to death.

A Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter will sense any electric current change immediately. This device then switches off any more electricity from passing through the wires. So if you experience a shock, it is in the mild range. You cannot get harmed.

Does a Dishwasher Need a GFCI 2020?

With the increase in demand for large appliances for commercial purposes and large homesteads, manufacturers are producing dishwashers that require up to 220V to run. Since most power outlets are meant to power appliances up to 120V, you should install a GFCI in your kitchen.

Another reason you need a GFCI outlet for your dishwasher is that a dishwasher runs on both water and electricity. And you don’t want to imagine if the two come into contact.

If a faulty wire is on the dishwasher’s cord, a GFCI receptacle will block any more current from getting to the dishwasher, which might have huge implications like fire. Therefore, you need a GFCI for your dishwasher and any other appliance in your home.

Does the Dishwasher Need GFCI Under the Sink?

All appliances, regardless of where they are placed, need a GFCI. For dishwashers found under the sink, there is a likelihood your cord might come in contact with water. Despite the wires being insulated, water might still find its way to the wire.

To prevent the severe damages that might happen to you and your home, you should install a GFCI receptacle. It will detect when the current flow is abnormal and counter the reaction.

NEC recommends that all devices used within six feet of the sink have their GFCI receptacle. A dishwasher under the sink fits that description properly. Although GFCI usually works with Plug dishwashers, you can hire an electrician to do a GFCI for your hardwired dishwasher.

What Appliances Require GFCI?

A fault home appliance causes most home fires. For that reason, National Electrical Code requires all homes near water bodies or in humid areas to have several GFCI outlets.

Another NEC regulation is that all the water and electricity appliances must have GFCI. These
appliances include;

  • Dishwashers
  • Washing machines
  • Refrigerators
  • Cookers
  • Microwaves

Although these regulations are not strictly followed, install this device for your and your family’s safety.

Installing a GFCI receptacle is not a thing that you can DIY. You should contact an experienced electrician to do the installation. However, this might not be necessary for new modern kitchens. They come with already installed GFCI receptacle circuit breakers.


A Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, also known as a GFCI outlet, is a vital device that all kitchens must-have. These devices protect you and your family from any accidents that might result from Ground Fault.

Most new kitchens come with an already installed GFCI receptacle that you can plug in your appliance directly. But for old homes with an out-of-date electric system, you need to install these safety devices. However, you should not install this device yourself as you might cause more harm than good.

Among the devices requiring a GFCI receptacle are dishwashers and washing machines. Ensure each device has its circuit to reduce the risk of home fires due to outlet overload. Dishwashers should not be plugged into the two outlets on top of the kitchen cabinet.

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