How Much Does it Cost to Install a GFCI Outlet?
$140 – $310 per Outlet Installed
The cost to install a GFCI outlet is $140 – $310 per outlet depending on how many are installed and the work done to install them. This cost estimate includes the price of materials plus labor costs. The cost for the GFCI outlet itself averages about $20, but the labor costs for this project account for most of the cost.
Average Cost for GFCI Outlet Installation
The average cost to install a GFCI outlet is $220 per outlet when you hire a licensed electrician. This cost includes the outlet and labor expenses. The cost to hire an electrician is $80 to $150 per hour for one GFCI outlet, with a minimum charge of one hour. Most licensed, experienced electricians can install one to three GFCI outlets per hour based on the specific job factors.
Overview of Ground Fault Outlet Installation
GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. A GFCI outlet can detect when there is a fault in the electrical current that could lead to a harmful electrical shock, and automatically shuts off the power to that outlet.
The primary cause of a GFCI outlet tripping is moisture in its many forms contacting an electrical outlet. If a GFCI outlet gets splashed, it will automatically turn off the power flowing to the outlet so that no household member is electrically shocked. High humidity might also trip a GFCI outlet in a bathroom or an outdoor location.
When the risk has passed, you can turn the outlet back on by pressing the “reset” button. GFCI outlets prevent accidents and mishaps involving hair dryers or other heat styling tools, phone chargers, kitchen appliances, etc.
Not only are GFCI outlets a good idea, but they are required by building code in certain areas of your home. According to the NEC (National Electric Code), any outlets within six feet of a sink or water source must be GFCI outlets. The NEC specifically requires GFCI outlets in kitchens, bathrooms, basements, crawl spaces, garages, and any outdoor outlets. Essentially, GFCI outlets are required anywhere with plumbing or appliances that use water, and anywhere moisture prone.
This GFCI outlet installation cost estimate looks at the cost factors involved in installing a GFCI outlet, as well as best practices and DIY tips for this project.
Product and Installation Supplies Cost Details
GFCI Outlet Cost Factors
The cost to install a GFCI outlet largely depends on the scope of your project. There are many cost factors that affect the total cost of your outlet installation, so make sure to take a look at the list below so you know what to expect!
- Who Does the Installation – Licensed electricians don’t work cheap. If you hire one, you can expect to spend between $100 and $180 for the cost of labor for the first hour and every hour after that. Simple outlet changes to GFCI take an hour or less. When the job includes running wire off an existing circuit, installing a box and the outlet, it might take 2-3 hours.
- Number of Outlets – The more outlets you install, the higher the total cost, obviously, but the cost per outlet will go dow. For example, Homewyse is pretty accurate in suggesting that the first GFCI outlet will cost an average of about $280, but the cost of the second outlet drops to around $170.
- Replacement or New Outlet – Simple replacement of an old 110/120-volt outlet of any kind for a new GFCI outlet takes about 10 minutes, but you’ll be charged for one hour of labor.
- Wiring – Switching out an old outlet for a GFCI is cheap. When wiring off an existing circuit, installing a box and the outlet are included, cost is higher.
- Indoor or Outdoor – A new outdoor outlet involves more labor time cutting through the home’s sheathing and adding a weather-protective hood. Outdoor GFCI installation cost is higher.
- Electrical Repair Work – Sometimes when an old outlet is being replaced, wiring that needs to be repaired or brought up to code is exposed. This is common in older homes. Costs to bring electrical work up to code surpass this GFCI outlet cost estimate.
Retail GFCI Outlet Costs
These potentially life-saving outlets don’t cost much, so they’re well worth using wherever the potential for shock is present in your indoor home projects or an outdoor location too. Here are retail costs for 110/120-volt ground fault circuit interrupter outlets.
- $14 – $20 | 15-amp outlet
- $16 – $22 | 20-amp outlet
- $18 – $28 | 30-amp outlet
Permits, Inspection, Related Costs and Installation Time
Permits and Inspection Cost
- $0 – $200 | If you are just replacing an old outlet with a GFCI outlet you may not need a permit. DIY and don’t ask, if you’re experienced with this kind of work. Adding new outlets or rewiring does require a permit, which you can get from your local Building Codes office The more electrical work you are doing, the more expensive the permit will be.
Related Costs and Installation Time
- 1 – 3 hours | A licensed electrician can replace an old outlet with a GFCI outlet in less than an hour, but bigger projects like installing a new outlet that involves rewiring can take several hours.
Costs of Related Projects
Below is a list of related projects that you might be interested in.
- Circuit Breaker Installation
- Whole-House Generator Installation
- Bathroom Exhaust Fan Replacement
- Bathroom Heater Cost
- Built-in Dishwasher Cost
DIY or Hire a Pro?
Electrical work scares off a lot of potential DIY homeowners because of the risk of immediate shock or fire down the road. Those are real concerns, but when this work is handled with respect and care, the danger is minimized.
Swapping out an old outlet, whether standard or GFCI, involves turning off the power, disconnecting several wires and connecting them to the same locations on the GFCI. It’s simple and safe.
Running new wire from an existing circuit or adding a circuit to the electrical panel and wiring a GFCI outlet is more complex, and the dangers are higher. However, with help from a friend with experience or by following online tutorials, a reasonably skilled homeowner can tackle this job successfully and safely.
Watch once? If you’re gaining skills but not sure you want to do this job, hire an electrician. And watch their work. Most pros are happy to answer a few questions about what they’re doing – sort of give you the play-by-play as they complete the job. If you’re a fast learner, you’ll be able to do this work and similar electrical projects in the future without spending money on licensed contractors.
How much can you save? RemodelingExpense puts the labor cost at $86 to $156 for a simple swap-out of an outlet. Angi – formerly Angie’s List – gives a GFCI outlet installation cost of $125-$175 when a certified electrician is hired. When wiring off an existing circuit is included, Homewyse is more accurate with its average estimate of $280 including up to $260 for labor.