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Old 12-15-2008, 01:00 PM   #46
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


Like I said, I know what I would do...

But your best bet is to call the local inspector and explain the situation to him and see if he would be OK with you replacing the AFCI with a standard breaker. This would be the only code compliant way around the problem without buying expensive equipment. Ask for a variance. A Siemens breaker costs treefidy.

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Old 12-15-2008, 02:13 PM   #47
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


I started this posting and no real answer. I have it plugged into the bathroom GFCI. If the bedroom is a office can you really break the code since its not a bedroom by changing the breaker? Then put the breaker back in once it is a bedroom.

Can someone help me walk through the steps of changeing the Siemens 2 wire breaker to a 1 wire breaker? It has to be easy. I already took the breaker out and put it back in.
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Old 12-15-2008, 02:32 PM   #48
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Originally Posted by tonydiato View Post
I started this posting and no real answer. I have it plugged into the bathroom GFCI. If the bedroom is a office can you really break the code since its not a bedroom by changing the breaker? Then put the breaker back in once it is a bedroom.

Can someone help me walk through the steps of changeing the Siemens 2 wire breaker to a 1 wire breaker? It has to be easy. I already took the breaker out and put it back in.

2 wire? you mean double pole? correct? there's a red and black wire, right? If so, you need a double pole breaker. As always, shut the breaker off when putting in, and removing breakers.

I would check with a local inspector if its ok to remove the breaker.
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Old 12-15-2008, 02:44 PM   #49
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Originally Posted by rgsgww View Post
2 wire? you mean double pole? correct? there's a red and black wire, right? If so, you need a double pole breaker. As always, shut the breaker off when putting in, and removing breakers.

I would check with a local inspector if its ok to remove the breaker.
No, he's referring to the hot and neutral both on the AFCI breaker. Tony, if you do change the breaker, the white wire will need to go on the neutral bar with the other white wires and the black wire will be the only one on the breaker.

And yes, you can be violating the code, if your area has adopted the use of AFCIs for all non-GFCI 120 V circuits. Do so at your own risk.
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Old 12-15-2008, 03:44 PM   #50
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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No, he's referring to the hot and neutral both on the AFCI breaker. Tony, if you do change the breaker, the white wire will need to go on the neutral bar with the other white wires and the black wire will be the only one on the breaker.

And yes, you can be violating the code, if your area has adopted the use of AFCIs for all non-GFCI 120 V circuits. Do so at your own risk.
The white wire is connected to the siemens Braker. Then there are 2 wires (red and black). The other breakers have have one wire going into them. Every other breaker swtiches the color (example one breaker has red wire, the next one black, the next one red, the next one black). SO, if i remove the AFCI the white wire goes with the breaker. SO, one of the black and red wires needs to connect to something other then the breaker? If that is the case if the color of the wire going into the next breaker is RED. would this one be BLACK going into the new Breaker? Then what do i do with the Red wire? Make Sense?
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Old 12-15-2008, 07:23 PM   #51
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Originally Posted by tonydiato View Post
The white wire is connected to the siemens Braker. Then there are 2 wires (red and black). The other breakers have have one wire going into them. Every other breaker swtiches the color (example one breaker has red wire, the next one black, the next one red, the next one black).
The chance of you having a double pole AFCI is nearly zero.

If your entire house is multi-wire branch circuits, that's kind of scary.

Post pictures.
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Old 12-15-2008, 07:46 PM   #52
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Originally Posted by Gigs View Post
The chance of you having a double pole AFCI is nearly zero.

If your entire house is multi-wire branch circuits, that's kind of scary.

Post pictures.
Here are the two pictures. One is the Board. The other is the AFCI switch. It does have 2 white wires and a black.

If i replace this with a regular Siemens switch. Where do i connect the White wire? Does it screw in to one of the screws to the side where all the other white wires are? To the Left of the switch? I assume the black just goes into the the new switch.
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Old 12-15-2008, 07:56 PM   #53
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


OK. This is better, thanks. Yes you don't need to touch any wires other than the one going into the breaker you are changing. You would turn the big breaker at the top off. Make sure you have a battery powered light to work by.

Then you would turn off the AFCI breaker you are replacing. Then disconnect the curly pigtail from the neutral bar... watch out if the wires are doubled-up... you don't want to leave any loose wires there. Disconnect the white and black from the AFCI breaker. Put the white wire where the pigtail was and tighten it down. Pull the old breaker out and save it for when you sell the house. Put the black wire into the new breaker, tighten the screw. Snap the new breaker into place. Turn on the new breaker and then the big main breaker.
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Old 12-15-2008, 10:02 PM   #54
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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OK. This is better, thanks. Yes you don't need to touch any wires other than the one going into the breaker you are changing. You would turn the big breaker at the top off. Make sure you have a battery powered light to work by.

Then you would turn off the AFCI breaker you are replacing. Then disconnect the curly pigtail from the neutral bar... watch out if the wires are doubled-up... you don't want to leave any loose wires there. Disconnect the white and black from the AFCI breaker. Put the white wire where the pigtail was and tighten it down. Pull the old breaker out and save it for when you sell the house. Put the black wire into the new breaker, tighten the screw. Snap the new breaker into place. Turn on the new breaker and then the big main breaker.
Thanks. I will try this.
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Old 12-15-2008, 10:19 PM   #55
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


Hi folks, just an update to my earlier post about my computer tripping the AFCI. I went and changed my computer's power supply to a newer model that also has Active PFC and it has the 80Plus safety standard. I can now boot up my computer without tripping the AFCI. Guess the AFCI was either detecting something was wrong with my old PSU or that it was false sensing.

I'm now using an OCZ GameXStream 600W PSU.

Not sure if this'll help the OP, as he's using a Mac, but maybe get Apple to replace the PSU and see if it helps too?

Last edited by SplitHorizon; 12-15-2008 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 12-16-2008, 07:09 AM   #56
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Originally Posted by SplitHorizon View Post
Hi folks, just an update to my earlier post about my computer tripping the AFCI. I went and changed my computer's power supply to a newer model that also has Active PFC and it has the 80Plus safety standard. I can now boot up my computer without tripping the AFCI. Guess the AFCI was either detecting something was wrong with my old PSU or that it was false sensing.

I'm now using an OCZ GameXStream 600W PSU.

Not sure if this'll help the OP, as he's using a Mac, but maybe get Apple to replace the PSU and see if it helps too?
Good, you've fixed the problem. I guess its from poorly constructed psus.
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Old 12-16-2008, 07:26 AM   #57
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Originally Posted by SplitHorizon View Post
Hi folks, just an update to my earlier post about my computer tripping the AFCI. I went and changed my computer's power supply to a newer model that also has Active PFC and it has the 80Plus safety standard. I can now boot up my computer without tripping the AFCI. Guess the AFCI was either detecting something was wrong with my old PSU or that it was false sensing.

I'm now using an OCZ GameXStream 600W PSU.

Not sure if this'll help the OP, as he's using a Mac, but maybe get Apple to replace the PSU and see if it helps too?
Good choice on the power supply, OCZ is all I buy for my desktop computers; haven't had any issues yet. Though im lucky enough that there are no AFCI circuits in this house.
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Old 12-16-2008, 11:23 AM   #58
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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Good choice on the power supply, OCZ is all I buy for my desktop computers; haven't had any issues yet. Though im lucky enough that there are no AFCI circuits in this house.

I like Ultra, I like their modular design, so you plug in the cables you need, no soldered on cables blocking airflow. I have the 1600 watt, 20 amp version.
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Old 12-20-2008, 02:14 AM   #59
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


I'm like SplitHorizon - I found this thread through a Google search, because I'm having the same problem. It started when I upgraded my video card, and had to upgrade my power supply at the same time because of the video card.

I have a Back-Up XS 800 UPS from APC too, but it didn't help. Another forum I saw (click here to go there) noted that most moderately priced UPS's pass AC power directly through to the computer except when the AC main power fails. So they don't filter anything, and as my case shows, it doesn't help. Only an online or true UPS that always conditions the power going to the PC would work, but they are hundreds of dollars.

So I'm going to change out the power supply, since for me, that's easier. I'm going to look for one with Active Power Factor Correction (PFC), and perhaps this 80Plus safety standard too.
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Old 09-13-2010, 05:10 PM   #60
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AFCI trip when computer turns on


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I doubt its an afci problem.

Try different loads, like a space heater.

DO NOT replace the afci with a non afci, it violates the electrical code your house was wired under.

Maybe your psu is bad?

Red and black?

Please post pictures.
Most likely not the case, I have this exact same problem in my new apartement. My computer would trip the breaker when I turn it on. Swapped the power supply with a new one, still have the same problem. A quick fix is I bought a Battery Back up Uninteruptable Power Supply to replace the surge protector it was connected to, that was then plugged into the tripping outlet.
Doing exactly this, I plugged it into an outlet that it didnt trip. Plugged the computer into the Battery Back up UPS, let it charge over night. Turned the computer on and unplugged the UPS (beeping from UPS began to signal power has been cut / has gone out) then plugged it into the outlet that the computer was tripping. Turns on just fine now. The reason I did that was I think the particular motherboard I have starts up different or something when it has been unplugged vs when it is off but has been plugged in since it was powered off. i.e., a solid blue LED light will light up on the power LED (with the HDD LED not on or flashing) if you plug it in and have not powered it up. But once you power it on and turn it off. It will have no LED light at all while off. This is a custom built computer, and some premanufactured ones will power on by themselves when you plug them in even if you dont press the power button. I am referring to desktops only by the way. Not sure why this happens but I have come across it with system I have seen in for repair at work.

Hope my temporarely solution helps you out too.

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