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Old 08-23-2011, 11:32 AM   #16
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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Originally Posted by Muinchja View Post
OK I'll try this, however, since electrical work, as I'm sure you all have gathered by now, is not my area of expertise, let's go over this quick.

Turn off the panel, Disconnect the breaker, connect the meter to these in the panel? Sorry about this. You guys have been very helpful so far.
You need to disconnect all three wires in the panel. If you are not comfortable working inside a panel get an experienced electrician to solve this proble.

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Old 08-23-2011, 11:48 AM   #17
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


Unplug everything.

Turn the breaker off.
.
Find first receptacle in circuit and disconnect it.

Turn breaker on.

If breaker holds, the problem is down stream.

If not, problem is between breaker and first receptacle.
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Old 08-23-2011, 11:58 AM   #18
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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Originally Posted by brric View Post
You need to disconnect all three wires in the panel. If you are not comfortable working inside a panel get an experienced electrician to solve this proble.
I just did this, checking ohms, I assume, I got NO reading on white/black, and black/ground, but white/ground was all over the place. It would jump from 1 to 190 to 34 and keep bouncing around until I removed the probes.
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:03 PM   #19
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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Originally Posted by Muinchja View Post
I just did this, checking ohms, I assume, I got NO reading on white/black, and black/ground, but white/ground was all over the place. It would jump from 1 to 190 to 34 and keep bouncing around until I removed the probes.
I think Code5 will agree with me.....but that is not what you should have.

Your measurements on the black and white sound right...but white to ground should also be open. Sounds like maybe one of your neutrals is touching the earth ground just a little.

Are your AFCI's by any chance also GFI's as well?
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:10 PM   #20
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
I think Code5 will agree with me.....but that is not what you should have.

Your measurements on the black and white sound right...but white to ground should also be open. Sounds like maybe one of your neutrals is touching the earth ground just a little.

Are your AFCI's by any chance also GFI's as well?
AFCI's have 50mA or so GFIC protection built in to them. Not like the 5mA on normal
gfci's. You are correct though that an equipment ground touching a neutral will trip an AFCI.
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:14 PM   #21
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
I think Code5 will agree with me.....but that is not what you should have.

Your measurements on the black and white sound right...but white to ground should also be open. Sounds like maybe one of your neutrals is touching the earth ground just a little.

Are your AFCI's by any chance also GFI's as well?
They don't say anywhere on them that they are GFIs, so I would assume "No".
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:37 PM   #22
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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Originally Posted by Code05 View Post
Unplug everything.

Turn the breaker off.
.
Find first receptacle in circuit and disconnect it.

Turn breaker on.

If breaker holds, the problem is down stream.

If not, problem is between breaker and first receptacle.
I'm sorry, but how do I determine which is the first on the circuit?
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:51 PM   #23
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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I'm sorry, but how do I determine which is the first on the circuit?
Without visually being able to see it....the outlet closest to the load center is most likely the one.......think of it this way...the guy running the Romex is going to take the shortest path that he can.

If I would go in and disconnect just the blacks on each outlet (that also includes seperating the blacks from each other within the box)....Next, I would tie the black for that ckt to the neutral for that ckt in the load center (since you have it disconnected from the breaker) then with the meter set up for ohms....measure from the white to the black at each recpt. The one that shows a short....that is the one that goes back to the load center...that will be the first recept in the daisy chain. All the other outlets connect to that one.

Something to try...since your pulling out all the recept....hook your meter between white and ground....and while someone (wife) watches the meter, go and shake each recept....I think there is a good chance you have the short in one of the boxes...the shake is worth a try....
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:52 PM   #24
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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I'm sorry, but how do I determine which is the first on the circuit?
I will get back to that.

First, have you been in the panel at all?
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:55 PM   #25
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
Without visually being able to see it....the outlet closest to the load center is most likely the one.......think of it this way...the guy running the Romex is going to take the shortest path that he can.

If I would go in and disconnect just the blacks on each outlet (that also includes seperating the blacks from each other within the box)....Next, I would tie the black for that ckt to the neutral for that ckt in the load center (since you have it disconnected from the breaker) then with the meter set up for ohms....measure from the white to the black at each recpt. The one that shows a short....that is the one that goes back to the load center...that will be the first recept in the daisy chain. All the other outlets connect to that one.

Something to try...since your pulling out all the recept....hook your meter between white and ground....and while someone (wife) watches the meter, go and shake each recept....I think there is a good chance you have the short in one of the boxes...the shake is worth a try....
That works.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:35 PM   #26
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
Without visually being able to see it....the outlet closest to the load center is most likely the one.......think of it this way...the guy running the Romex is going to take the shortest path that he can.

If I would go in and disconnect just the blacks on each outlet (that also includes seperating the blacks from each other within the box)....Next, I would tie the black for that ckt to the neutral for that ckt in the load center (since you have it disconnected from the breaker) then with the meter set up for ohms....measure from the white to the black at each recpt. The one that shows a short....that is the one that goes back to the load center...that will be the first recept in the daisy chain. All the other outlets connect to that one.

Something to try...since your pulling out all the recept....hook your meter between white and ground....and while someone (wife) watches the meter, go and shake each recept....I think there is a good chance you have the short in one of the boxes...the shake is worth a try....
So I tried this and only one of the recpt didn't have readings that jumped around. There are six outlets in total one outlet had two blacks and two whites. One of those black/white combos read zero and the other outlet that read zero was the one next to that double wired box. Everything else fluctuated.

Does it sound like there's something along the circuit that I'm missing? Knowing this contractor (the breaker with the entrance way, the garage, and one outlet in the basement, were labeled "Microwave" in the breaker box) I wouldn't be supprised, I just can't figure out what it could be.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:55 PM   #27
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


Are you making these measurements with all three wires disconnected in the panel? If not you will get inaccurate readings.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:57 PM   #28
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


The problem could be in a switch box rather than an outlet box.
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Old 08-23-2011, 03:08 PM   #29
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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Are you making these measurements with all three wires disconnected in the panel? If not you will get inaccurate readings.
Per ddawg16 I've disconnected the wires from the breaker in the panel and connected the black and white to each other.
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Old 08-23-2011, 03:10 PM   #30
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AFCI Breaker Keeps Tripping


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The problem could be in a switch box rather than an outlet box.
I have replaced both switches today.

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