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Old 07-02-2013, 09:38 PM   #1
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New AFCIs always tripping


Helping a friend with some basement renovations, and part of it is 2 new circuits, one for receptacles and one for lights. Each circuit has a 15A AFCI breaker, both with fairly simple configurations (light circuit covers 6 recessed fixtures for 2 rooms, receptacle circuit is just for one room approx 12 x 18).

Got things all wired up nice and pretty, and each circuit trips as soon as any load is put on it (except for the lights in my receptacle tester). We tried multiple AFCIs with no luck on any, the circuits both work with standard breakers. Done multiple visual inspections of all of the lines and can't find any kinks, crossed lines, etc.

What are we missing in trouble shooting?

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Old 07-02-2013, 09:42 PM   #2
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New AFCIs always tripping


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Originally Posted by dvaupel View Post

Got things all wired up nice and pretty, and each circuit trips as soon as any load is put on it... What are we missing in trouble shooting?
It's called a megger.

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=megger+%2B+afci


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Old 07-02-2013, 10:36 PM   #3
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New AFCIs always tripping


If it trips with only a load, could be the load, or a ground fault.

Try replacing the AFCI breaker with a GFCI breaker to test for ground fault, if it trips it will help narrow down the search.
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Old 07-03-2013, 01:14 AM   #4
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New AFCIs always tripping


Did you get the white ground wire on the AFCI properly connected to your neutral buss?

And....did you connect the neutral of the load to the AFCI? Not the neutral buss? Both the hot and neutral go to the AFCI.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:17 AM   #5
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New AFCIs always tripping


Start breaking the circuit apart. Disconnect half of it and see what happens. If it still trips then move closer to the panel. Repeat until you narrow down where the problem is.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:59 AM   #6
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New AFCIs always tripping


Tripping under load... it's either what ddawg said or you crossed the neutrals between the circuits.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:15 PM   #7
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New AFCIs always tripping


The neutral wire for the circuit MUST connect to the AFCI breaker, NOT the neutral bar.

Relocate it to the breaker.

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