I am in the process of building an electric brew kettle using a 5500 watt water heating element. I have read all of the information that is out there on the net. Many of the forums and other sites suggest using a gfic spa spa panel for safety. The only one I find is 50 amps. Is there a safety issue since the element will never pull any amps close to that. I will be wiring everything with 10/3 wire. Would there be a potential fire hazard given that the circuit will never pull close to 50 amps? Would it be safer to feed the spa panel from a 30 amp breaker from the house panel? I hope this makes sense. Thanks
GFCI stands for Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. Which in plain English means that if you short the thing out (by touching it or splashing water on it or what have you), the circuit should break. Of course, if you just stuck a screwdriver in the socket, you ARE going to get zapped for a second before the breaker pops. GFCI reacts to shorts rather than amp draw for the most part. At least for the outlet kind, I would think the breaker design would be the same (thus the breaker will pop for either a short or if you exceed the amperage of the breaker).
Using a 220/240 volt circuit for power, you’ll be looking at drawing around 25 amps at full power.
Using a 110/120 volt circuit for power it would be around 46 amps at full power.
If it was me, I’d do a 220/240 volt circuit with a 30-amp breaker and run 8/3 wire, but I have a habit of using a heavier wire than required.