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Old 07-13-2012, 10:12 AM   #1
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


I came home and my bedroom afci was tripped. I try unplugging everything and resetting but it immediately clicks and resets. Should I replace the afci or just call in an electrician? If I was to attempt to replace the breaker, can I just turn the main breaker off in the box and safely replace the afci without frying myself?

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Old 07-13-2012, 10:20 AM   #2
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Look for a fault on the circuit.
You could test the breaker by removing the wire from and trying to reset it. If it resets then problem on the circuit.

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Old 07-13-2012, 10:23 AM   #3
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


thank you JoeD. Iím very much a novice here. Remove all the wires or is there a certain one I should try? Also, by turning off the large breaker in the box on the top can I safely work on the rest?
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:27 AM   #4
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Turn off your large breaker at the top. Confirm the afci breaker is dead by testing from the screw on the back with the wire hooked to it to ground with a meter. Take the wire off the breaker and put a wirenut on it. Turn the large breaker back on. Reset the afci breaker. If it holds then you have a fault. If it trips then you have a bad breaker.
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:34 AM   #5
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


thank you very much for the info. Is it common for afci to go bad?
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:40 AM   #6
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Anything's possible. Most likely you have a fault though.
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:43 AM   #7
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


A fault would be a short in the wires? Like an electrical bridge of electricity where there shouldn't be? worn wires etc?
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:48 AM   #8
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Yup, you can test for that at the plug as well when the powers off. Using a ohmeter you testing between neutral and hot and hot and ground you shouldn't get a low reading. The meter.
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:51 AM   #9
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Since it is an AFCI there could also be a loose arcing connection.
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:56 AM   #10
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Quote:
Originally Posted by zappa View Post
Since it is an AFCI there could also be a loose arcing connection.
For which you probably need to rent Siemens' Intelli-arc device to troubleshoot it.

I come to find out that for the AFCI to detect an arc it needs an arc and at least 5A flowing.

From all the patents on this gadget it's possible they will never eliminate nuisance trips.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 07-13-2012 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 07-13-2012, 10:59 AM   #11
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


If you have AFCI breakers either your home is fairly new, or the wires/breakers have been updated, which is it? How long have you lived in the home?
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Old 07-13-2012, 01:05 PM   #12
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


The home is about 2 years old and I have li=ved there for about two weeks.
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Old 07-13-2012, 01:34 PM   #13
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Are you the first owner? or was it a foreclosure? Reason I'm asking is there's lots of copper thieves and things might have been tampered with and possibly repaired by a hack.. I would guess the breaker would have been tripping the whole time though if that were the case..
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Old 07-13-2012, 01:49 PM   #14
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


gotcha. I'm the second owner but I don't see anything that looks tampered with. Do you think it is worth 30 bucks to replace the breaker myself?
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Old 07-13-2012, 01:53 PM   #15
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afci is tripped and won't reset - immediately trips again when I reset it


Do you do any of the testing shown above?

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