Image courtesy of Wtshymanski on Wikipedia

What’s the difference between AFCI vs GFCI? GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) Monitors the amperage between the hot leg and the neutral leg. Any leakage in current (amperage) will cause the GFCI device to shut off (open) the circuit in 20 to 30 milliseconds.

These devices are required where water is likely to be present. Exterior outlets, garage, cellar, kitchen counter, bathroom and any wet counter outlets.
AFCI (arc fault circuit interrupter)  Monitors the difference between normal arcing standards of devices such as relays and switches and allows these as opposed to undesirable arcing of cut cords or cables. In the
latter case it would shut off (open) the circuit in 20 to 30 milliseconds to prevent a fire. Electrical fires are mainly caused by constant arcing that eventually increases into a full fire.
The two separate systems are now being combined to make AFCI/GFCI devices, so you don’t have to worry about AFCI vs GFCI. New codes are now requiring the combination device (AFCI/GFCI) be used in all the areas the GFCI was formerly used.
The AFCI is used in all non GFCI locations that are not susceptible to water such as bedrooms, living rooms, dining rooms etc.
The bottom line is both are all about safety: Protecting the user from electrical dangers that are always present in your home.
Contact Cote Electric, LLC to bring your home up to code with these valuable safety products.