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Old 01-28-2008, 10:44 AM   #1
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


I have a Carrier HVAC that is less than two years old. Iím in Florida so itís not very often that I need to click it to heat but last night I did and it tripped the breaker. I checked the connections at the panel and inside the air handler. There was not anything that was more than a 1/8 turn loose (copper wiring). I turned the system back on and it lasted between 1 to 2 minutes before it tripped. The breaker is stone cold when it trips, also I noticed that this is a 30 amp breaker, I assume this is correct. The AC works fine, so Iím guessing that the wiring and breaker are OK and the problem must be with the appliance.

Any advice or suggestions before I call the service tech and he tells me itís an electrical problem? Or if I call an electrician and he tells me thereís nothing wrong with the circuit.


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Old 01-28-2008, 01:28 PM   #2
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


How old is the breaker?

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Old 01-28-2008, 01:45 PM   #3
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


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Originally Posted by redline View Post
How old is the breaker?

The house is less than 2 years old so I can only assume the breaker is the same.

I think the wire to that breaker is 12 awg, that seems too small for the heater protion of the handler, maybe it's the blower? But the blower works fine for the AC. There is another set of wires that is much heavier, 8 awg maybe? That goes to a 60 amp breaker inside the AH and is in the off position not tripped but off. Not sure what that is for. There is a lable inside the AH that states the heater kit is 230 vac.
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Old 01-29-2008, 11:04 AM   #4
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


Does the cable from the 30 amp breaker go to the AH? Have you tried to run it in AC since the breaker tripped? The 60 amp breaker most likely feeds the resistance heating portion and, if the 30 amp also feeds the AH, it also may run the blower, control transformer and one heater. If that is all true, you probably have an electric furnace with three heat elements. If the 30 amp breaker is a single pole breaker, it is unrelated.
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Old 01-29-2008, 11:50 AM   #5
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


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Originally Posted by hoistdoctor View Post
Does the cable from the 30 amp breaker go to the AH? Have you tried to run it in AC since the breaker tripped? The 60 amp breaker most likely feeds the resistance heating portion and, if the 30 amp also feeds the AH, it also may run the blower, control transformer and one heater. If that is all true, you probably have an electric furnace with three heat elements. If the 30 amp breaker is a single pole breaker, it is unrelated.
Yes, the 30 (double) amp breaker that is popping goes to the AH and yes the AC works fine.
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Old 01-29-2008, 05:08 PM   #6
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


If your sure that the blower works fine for cooling than, I would check all the wires in the heating portion for a short, you may see an arc mark inside the control box. There is more than likely one rack of strip heat on that 30 amp line as well, it maybe shorted. I would check it with a megohm meter.
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Old 01-30-2008, 06:31 PM   #7
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


If it takes 1 to 2 minutes to trip, it could be an element that is touching ground when it heats up and you should be able to see it if you pull the elements out. You say that it is a heat pump. A heat pump should be pulling heat from outside unless it is in emergency heat mode. If that is the case, the outside unit may be running and there could be a reversing valve problem if it has a line voltage coil. Even then I would think that the coil would burn open before it tripped a 30 amp breaker. It's hard to diagnose a problem without being there.
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Old 02-05-2008, 08:12 AM   #8
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Heat pump popping the breaker.


Well I had the pro come in to fix it.

The system was wired wrong from the start. That 30 amp breaker should have never been there in the first place. There is only two AH and there was three breakers. Then in order to continue the great job, they had to screw up the wiring inside the AH. He removed the wiring from the 30 amp breaker and fixed the connections in the AH.

All is well.

Now if I could only get my hands on the one who did this.


Thanks for the help

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