Few things are more convenient than an in-wall smart outlet when you want to turn a lamp or small appliance on and off, and the devices have been around almost as long as smart switches. But you haven’t been able to install one in a kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, garage, or other damp and wet locations because none of them provided the safety of a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter). Leviton says it is now offering the first as part of its Decora Smart product line.
The Leviton Smart GFCI Outlet is a 15-amp duplex electrical outlet with an onboard Wi-Fi adapter. As its name suggests, the new device is also outfitted with a GFCI that shuts off all power to the outlet in the event of a ground fault. This will prevent anyone nearby from suffering an electric shock. The National Electrical Code (NEC) requires GFCI outlets in any locations that could be damp or wet.
This news story is part of TechHive’s in-depth coverage of the best smart plugs.
Once installed and connected to your home’s Wi-Fi network, Leviton’s new smart outlet will notify you with a (defeatable) onboard alarm if the outlet is tripped due to a ground fault, and it will also send an alert to the My Leviton app on your smartphone. The outlet has a self-test feature, as is required by code, and the app will inform you if the outlet is in self-test mode. If you have multiple Smart GFCI outlets, the app will inform you which ones are tripped.
Leviton says its Reset Lockout feature will prevent the outlet from being reset if it is wired incorrectly or is otherwise not operating correctly. A color LED status indicator provides additional visual feedback as to the outlet’s state. As an added defense against injury, the outlet is equipped with a shutter mechanism designed to prevent a child from shoving a foreign object into either of its blade receptacles.