Expect to pay an average of $210 to install a GFCI outlet.
The typical range is between $130 and $300.
A GFCI outlet costs between $7 and $25 each.
The number of outlets needed is the biggest factor in the total price.
Safety is of the utmost importance when it comes to your home's electrical system. A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) electrical outlet is a safe option because it protects against electric shocks in wet areas. A GFCI outlet costs between $130 and $300, with an average price of about $210. Read on to learn the various costs of installing a GFCI outlet in your home.
How Does a GFCI Outlet Work?
A GFCI outlet is a type of electrical outlet that works by sensing that a person's body is getting shocked, then shutting off power. They are particularly important in areas that may come in contact with water, which is why they're most common in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and garages.
How Much Does It Cost to Install a GFCI Outlet per Unit?
A GFCI outlet costs between $7 and $25 each. So, materials make up a very small proportion of the cost of this project—labor is the biggest price factor. But it’s worth the money to pay a professional to handle GFCI installation. When you’re dealing with electrical work, proper installation is crucial.
GFCI Outlet Installation Cost Factors
The factors that affect the price of installing GFCI outlets break down into three main categories: the number of outlets you want, whether you hire a professional or DIY, and whether you'll need to purchase the tools for the job.
Number of Outlets
The number of outlets you need is the big driver, as obviously you'll need to buy each outlet and then add extra time for the installation of those additional outlets. Fortunately, the more outlets you're installing, the less time it will take per outlet. But you can still expect a big total price difference between installing one outlet versus installing 12.
A professional local electrician typically charges between $50 and $100 per hour, depending on their expertise and the cost of living in your area. Some electricians charge per outlet instead of by the hour. There’s usually a minimum fee of at least $100 to $200 per visit, making it cost-effective to have them tackle several electrical projects at once.
Replacing vs. New Outlet Installation
If you’re replacing a grounded outlet with a GFCI outlet, the job is straightforward and takes a matter of minutes if you know what you’re doing. If you’re installing a GFCI breaker in your panel or putting in a new outlet altogether, you’ll need to hire an electrician to do the job.
Indoor vs. Outdoor GFCI Outlet Installation
In general, standard outlet installation costs $210, while outdoor outlets cost anywhere from $300 to $1,400 per project. Outdoor outlets need a waterproof electrical box, may require you to drill into the side of your home, or run new electrical lines if the outlet is installed away from the house.
Permits and Inspection Costs
Before installing a new outlet, you (or your electrician) may need to apply for an electrical permit. Check your local building code before doing any electrical work to see if you need a permit. In general, permits cost anywhere from $10 to $500 depending on what you’re tackling.
If you’re just adding or replacing outlets, inspections for code compliance are often free and included in your electrician’s work. If you have concerns about your electrical system, consider having an inspection done, which costs $160 on average.
If you're starting from scratch and don't have the tools for the job, you may need to spend $100 or so on wire strippers, a voltage tester pen, and so on. However, once again, if you don't have the basic tools for the job, it's probably not something you should be doing on your own. Contact an electrician in your area and get a quote.
Frequently Asked Questions
You will need to meet the following code requirements for installing a GFCI outlet in the following rooms:
Bathrooms: The outlet needs a 20-amp circuit, and all outlets need GFCI protection.
Kitchen: The outlet needs at least two 20-amp small appliance circuits for the countertop, and outlets that are within 6 feet of a sink must be GFCI-protected.
Laundry room: The outlet needs a 30-amp, 240-volt circuit with four conductors, and all receptacles need GFCI protection.
Garage: You will need one outlet for each car space, and all outlets will need GFCI protection.
Not necessarily; just the outlets that serve countertop surfaces. You should install GFCI outlets wherever there could be a lot of wet areas, so any outlet that is near a sink needs to be GFCI.
You don't need a GFCI outlet for a refrigerator because the outlet would likely go behind the refrigerator, which isn't a wet surface. If it was plugged into a countertop receptacle, it would need to be GFCI.
Dishwashers generally do not need GFCI protection since the outlet typically would not be near a countertop surface. The same is true for any large appliance. If your dishwasher is within 6 feet of a sink, however, then yes, you would need GFCI protection.
You should put your fridge on a dedicated circuit if you notice it is continually tripping the GFCI outlet. This typically happens when multiple appliances are plugged into one circuit, which overloads it and causes the GFCI to trip. Try plugging the fridge into a different outlet and see if that fixes the problem.
While you can save on the cost by installing an outlet yourself, if you’re not experienced, you could damage your home or cause severe personal injury. Beyond these risks, it’s important that your outlets are up-to-code and safe for use. Unless you have the experience and electrical know-how, it’s best to hire an electrician for safety and peace of mind. Hiring a professional to install a GFCI outlet typically costs between $130 and $300. Doing it yourself costs less than $25 if you already have the tools—and the experience.