Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Electrical

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 01-23-2012, 07:35 PM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 45
Rewards Points: 25
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


I want to use AFCI for the living room, but it's on a shared neutral with the sump pump. My box is an old GE panel from 1969. Running a separate neutral would be impossible without a lot of effort & $$$. Siemens is the only company I know that makes a 2P AFCI, but can't approve it being used in other brand panels. (even though it'll fit)

GE does have a method to wire two single pole breakers to form a double pole.
http://img198.imageshack.us/img198/2949/28187417.jpg

But how does even this work? Is the second breaker even doing anything? What's to stop me from just using a normal breaker for the pump (red wire) and just take the neutral and put it on the afc? I know GFCI can't work that way, but this seems weird.

Sliding Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2012, 07:57 PM   #2
Electrical Contractor
 
jbfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Newnan GA
Posts: 5,926
Rewards Points: 2,248
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sliding Man View Post
I want to use AFCI for the living room, but it's on a shared neutral with the sump pump. My box is an old GE panel from 1969. Running a separate neutral would be impossible without a lot of effort & $$$. Siemens is the only company I know that makes a 2P AFCI, but can't approve it being used in other brand panels. (even though it'll fit)

GE does have a method to wire two single pole breakers to form a double pole.
http://img198.imageshack.us/img198/2949/28187417.jpg

But how does even this work? Is the second breaker even doing anything? What's to stop me from just using a normal breaker for the pump (red wire) and just take the neutral and put it on the afc? I know GFCI can't work that way, but this seems weird.
I'm not sure of the diagram either.
You can put a small siemens subpanel in and install the 2 pole afci that way.

__________________
Yes I am a Pirate, 200 years too late. "Jimmy Buffett"
jbfan is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2012, 09:46 PM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Md/Pa
Posts: 1,382
Rewards Points: 1,120
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sliding Man View Post
But how does even this work? Is the second breaker even doing anything? What's to stop me from just using a normal breaker for the pump (red wire) and just take the neutral and put it on the afc? I know GFCI can't work that way, but this seems weird.
I see what they are doing and it will work. Very ingenious
zappa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 12:50 AM   #4
Semi-Pro Electro-Geek
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 2,559
Rewards Points: 2,014
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Quote:
Originally Posted by zappa View Post
I see what they are doing and it will work. Very ingenious
I don't get it. I would swear that doesn't work. The top AFCI (with the neutral connected) and its load should be fine. But both AFCI's should trip as soon as a 30mA or greater load is applied on the lower circuit (red wire to neutral), since AFCI's sense ground faults at the Class B (GFPE) level. All current that leaves on the red wire returns through the other breaker, creating an imbalance in both breakers. How could this possibly work? Is there another interconnection between the two breakers somehow?

EDIT: OK, so GE's literature says their new AFCI breakers do not use a ground fault CT anymore, and thus a current imbalance does not trip the breaker. I could have sworn the 30mA ground fault trip was part of the UL spec for AFCI, but apparently they are no longer required to do it. So that's how it works. And it ONLY works with this series of breakers.

Murray does make 2-pole AFCI breakers.

Last edited by mpoulton; 01-24-2012 at 12:58 AM.
mpoulton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 12:58 AM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Md/Pa
Posts: 1,382
Rewards Points: 1,120
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Quote:
Originally Posted by mpoulton View Post
I don't get it. I would swear that doesn't work. The top AFCI (with the neutral connected) and its load should be fine. But both AFCI's should trip as soon as a 30mA or greater load is applied on the lower circuit (red wire to neutral), since AFCI's sense ground faults at the Class B (GFPE) level. All current that leaves on the red wire returns through the other breaker, creating an imbalance in both breakers. How could this possibly work? Is there another interconnection between the two breakers somehow?
Sorry for not giving a better explanation. The levers are connected and these breakers have no ground fault sensing.
zappa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 06:02 PM   #6
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 45
Rewards Points: 25
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


In that case it should work with a normal breaker on the pump, right? Because to be honest, I'd rather not put any special type of breaker on the pump.
Sliding Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 07:06 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Md/Pa
Posts: 1,382
Rewards Points: 1,120
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sliding Man View Post
In that case it should work with a normal breaker on the pump, right? Because to be honest, I'd rather not put any special type of breaker on the pump.
The living room breaker would trip when the pump started because of the ground fault circuitry. Do you have to use an AFCI for the living room? What is stopping you from using the Siemens.

Last edited by zappa; 01-24-2012 at 07:13 PM.
zappa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 03:54 AM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 45
Rewards Points: 25
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Quote:
Originally Posted by zappa View Post
The living room breaker would trip when the pump started because of the ground fault circuitry. Do you have to use an AFCI for the living room? What is stopping you from using the Siemens.
I wanted arc fault on the living because there is a lot of outlets covered by furniture and a few extension cords running behind things. Nothing is psychically stopping me from using the Siemens. I just worry about it not being approved for use by the company themselves.
Sliding Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 12:20 PM   #9
I have gas!
 
Clutchcargo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 1,783
Rewards Points: 1,018
Default

GE's "double pole" AFCI


Re: illustration
What would happen if you took the neutral wire from the top afci breaker and ran it to the neutral input connection of the bottom afci breaker?

__________________
I tear things down and build them up.
Clutchcargo is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
AFCI breaker tripping encounter779 Electrical 8 06-11-2011 05:09 PM
Puzzled with AFCI nuisance trip ravi Electrical 11 06-06-2011 06:27 PM
Need help understanding GFCI & AFCI sheslostcontrol Electrical 14 11-01-2010 12:59 PM
AFCI and 3-wire circuits...ugghh mhops Electrical 11 03-17-2010 12:22 PM
Loose electrical outlets travishume Electrical 30 08-01-2008 08:21 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.