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Frequently Asked Questions
Is there an ongoing monthly fee for GFI Notify?
Is there a difference between GFI and GFCI?
No, they both refer to the same type of electrical outlet that functions as a very sensitive circuit breaker. GFCI means Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter; GFI stands for Ground Fault Interrupter. Both abbreviations are commonly used. GFI outlets are required in bathrooms, garages, crawl spaces, basements, laundry rooms and areas where a water source is present. It is very common for homeowners to have a freezer or refrigerator plugged into a GFI circuit in their garage or basement. Because GFIs are so sensitive, they can trip (lose power) for a number of reasons including a close lightning storm. GFI Notify detects that loss of power and will notify up to 3 contacts within 4 minutes so that remedial action can be taken. Notifications are by email and text so the homeowner can be thousands of miles from home. GFI Notify is like having insurance for the loss of food in those appliances.
Can I do the set-up of the SmartPlug in any outlet?
Yes, you can set up the SmartPlug in any convenient electrical outlet before you eventually plug it into one that’s in series with the GFI circuit and any non-GFI outlet you want to monitor. The initial set-up requires you to see flashing lights on the plug. Do this where you are comfortable.
Am I really getting two free WiFi SmartPlugs with my order?
Yes, your first WiFi SmartPlug is used to monitor a GFI circuit. The 2nd included SmartPlug is plugged into a non-GFI outlet. With both plugs, GFI Notify will notify you if just a GFI outlet has tripped or if your entire house has lost power. You can also order additional SmartPlugs at an excellent price. These additional plugs can be used for everyday “smart home” purposes; they are NOT monitored by GFI notify.
If I have more than one smart plug being monitored by GFI Notify, how do I know which one is sending the notifications in the event of a power loss?
When the smart plugs are installed, in the process, you are able to name the location of each plug. For example, “GFI garage” or “GFI sump pump” or “Living Room”. Therefore, the plug’s given name is attached to any power outage notification (and restoration).
Can I use my own smart plug with the GFI Notify App?
We cannot guaranty the proper functioning of the GFI Notify detection and notification system if you use your own plug. We have rigorously tested the SmartPlugs that we are providing FREE with your order. We are confident that they will do the job they’re intended to do on a consistent basis. We are providing additional plugs, as an option, at an excellent price. We cannot provide any customer support if our provided SmartPlugs aren’t used.
Is the GFI Notify process difficult to install?
After placing your order, you will receive your SmartPlugs by First Class mail. You first install the SmartPlugs according to the enclosed manufacturer’s directions. Next, you log back in to this website to complete the installation following the provided steps. We provide very detailed instructions every step of the way, including excellent YouTube tutorial videos.
Will GFI Notify notify me if my entire house loses power?
Yes, this is another important benefit of GFI Notify that is included with your purchase. GFI Notify will let you know of that whole house power loss generally within 4 minutes. And, GFI Notify will also inform you when power to your entire house is restored. For this situation, we intentionally wait 4 minutes to avoid false alarms as much as possible such as would occur with a router reboot.
Can I plug an appliance into the SmartPlug?
Yes, you can plug any device into the SmartPlug that draws up to 12 amps of current. However, because there are so many other open outlets that are available in series with the GFI outlet, we do not recommend plugging in a freezer or refrigerator into the SmartPlug outlet itself. This is because there is a very slight chance that if the power to your entire house goes off, not due to a GFI trip, and then comes on again, the SmartPlug may remain in the “off” mode. Very unlikely plus we have programmed two, fail-safe mechanisms to prevent this, but why take a chance? Again, the chances of this happening are practically zero.
Where should I plug in the WiFi SmartPlug for GFI Notification?
The free SmartPlug that you will use along with the GFI Notify App to notify you when your GFI outlet trips can be plugged into any electrical outlet that is in series with the GFI outlet that you want to monitor. Generally, there can be up to 7 electrical outlets in series “downstream” from this GFI outlet.
How many notifications will I receive after a power loss?
You will receive a total of 4 in 20 minute intervals. You will be able to input up to 3 cell phone numbers and up to 3 email addresses to simultaneously receive those notifications. Of course, if power is restored in the meantime, you will be notified of that once and all notifications will stop.
If my GFI trips, can I reset it remotely?
No, and you wouldn’t want to. As you saw on a previous page, a GFI outlet is a sensitive circuit breaker and there are several reasons why a GFI can trip. You would want a trusted person to check things out personally.
In some cases, the GFI can be reset by simply pushing the reset button. If it keeps tripping, there could be a more serious problem.
If you have a freezer or refrigerator plugged into an electrical outlet on a GFI circuit, we suggest that you keep a long extension cord available so that, if the GFI cannot be simply reset, at least your freezer or refrigerator can be plugged into a live outlet elsewhere until you will be available to deal with the problem that is causing the tripping.
How long will food last in a freezer or refrigerator without power?
A freezer that is 100% full could last up to 48 hours; a freezer that is 50% full could last up to 24 hours. A typical refrigerator will last only 4 hours after it loses power. Why take a chance? GFI Notify provides assurance and piece of mind for a very low cost.
Why should I buy an additional SmartPlug?
Remember that two SmartPlugs are free and come with your order. The first SmartPlug should be plugged into the GFI circuit that you want to monitor where you have a freezer or refrigerator or other crucial device plugged in.
The second SmartPlug should be plugged into a non-GFI electrical outlet somewhere else on the premises. The GFI Notify App will monitor both SmartPlugs to give you excellent information.
For example, if you receive a notification from both smart plugs that power has been lost, you can conclude that power to the entire house has been lost and the GFI did not trip. When power is restored to the entire house, both smart plugs will report the restoration through the GFI Notify App. If, on the other hand, the SmartPlug monitoring the GFI circuit reports a power loss while the SmartPlug monitoring the non-GFI outlet does not, you can conclude that only the GFI outlet has tripped and you need to take remedial action.
You may also want to purchase additional SmartPlugs to monitor any other GFI circuits you may have in your home or business. Also, many homes have sump pumps and swimming pool pumps plugged into GFI circuits. Note: Our SmartPlug is suitable for outdoor usage as long as it is covered; better yet, we also offer a weatherproof smart plug designed especially for outdoor use. One GFI Notify App will monitor each and every SmartPlug on the premises linked to it.
How many times can I install GFI Notify?
When you purchase the GFI Notify App which comes with TWO FREE SmartPlugs, you are buying a license for a one-time installation for your own use. Please note that the GFI Notify App settings allow you to establish up to three cell phone numbers and up to three email addresses that will be notified when power is lost and restored.
Is it possible to have a false power-out notification?
Yes. That can happen if your Internet service is not working. You must have a continuous wifi signal on the premises for GFI Notify to function properly. If not, you will receive a notification that the monitored SmartPlugs have lost power. When the Internet service is restored, you will receive a notification that power to the monitored SmartPlugs have been restored. We have attempted to minimize such false alarms by intentionally not reporting a power outage by checking the plugs’ status for up to 3 minutes. This should be adequate time if you desire to reboot your router or modem, for example. That rebooting results in a temporary loss of your wifi signal.
When entering my cellphone number to receive notifications, do I need to use my area code and a “1” before it?
Always use area codes when entering the cell phone numbers that you want to receive the notifications. In addition, we have discovered that, in certain parts of the country, that you also have to enter a “1” before the area code. If you are not sure, try it both ways.
What can I do if my wifi signal is weak where I want to locate my smart plug?
Remember that the smart plug can be plugged into any open electrical outlet that is in series with the GFI outlet you want to monitor. So, the first thing to try would be to use an outlet that is closer to your router, the source of your wifi signal. If that doesn’t solve the problem, you need to buy a wireless signal booster. They are inexpensive. Our company will soon have an excellent, compatible one available for purchase. Definitely ask us before making a purchase elsewhere.
Should I do periodic testing of GFI Notify?
We recommend that you do a test about once every three months for each plug you are monitoring. Right now, the only test that actually simulates a power loss at the circuit or outlet is to physically unplug the smart plug. You should receive the notifications within 4 minutes. If there are others on your notification list, be sure to let them know that you will be conducting a test or temporarily remove their contact information.
Can I use my one GFI Notify App to monitor Power Loss at other locations?
Yes, you can. The other locations must have wifi. You simply install 2 smart plugs under the same Meross account you set up at your home. At the new location, you will use the User Name and Password for that location’s router. All of your installed plugs will appear in your GFI Notify account.
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