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-   -   Poppin' the breaker (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/poppin-breaker-6461/)

Rze 02-12-2007 10:53 AM

Poppin' the breaker
 
I did some work at a friends house and the Panel wasn't mapped. To keep from having to shut every thing off one at a time, I attempted to short the circuit in order to identify the proper breaker (trip it) for the cicuit I was working on. I'm not looking for the lecture on why I shouldn't do this, however I was surprised that the breaker did not trip.

When I moved work to a second room, I attempted the same thing, just to see of maybe the first breaker might have been faulty. Same result (the breaker did not trip). Are some breakers just more tolerant? I know tha this is not a Federal Pacific box. Just curios.

Brik 02-12-2007 12:38 PM

How were you creating the short? I mistakenly thought I could test a GFCI that way once. GFCI G=GROUND. I used a screwdriver across hot and neutral blades of a plug that was partially inserted. It took a chunk from the screwdriver and the plug AND tripped the breaker. Smooth move exlax! Better way is to plug a lamp in and flip the breakers. If you are doing it by yourself, and cant see the lamp, plug in a portable radio and turn it up so you can hear the radio go off when you flip the correct breaker.

frenchelectrican 02-13-2007 04:13 AM

did i read this right ????? you try to trip the breaker by shorting it out ??:eek:

if you short the Netural and Ground you will only trip the GFCI devices

but if you try to short the HOT and NETURAL just DON'T FREAKING DO THAT [ i have to changed from my cussing to G rated words here ]

the reason why i say dont do it because i am electrician and i am sure other electrician will say the same thing what i going to say here

1 ] good chance you will destory something along the way

2] with any short it can weakend down the wires [ they will get hot fast ]

3] they make wonderfull flash like lighting bolt and sound as well

4] with the flash over you can get something else catch on fire

5] if you ever get too close where it flash over it going hurt like :censored:



the simple way to turn off the power is just used the table lamp or radio and flip the breaker off when the table lamp or radio go dead then you know you don't have the juice there

but becarefull with some area have MWBC [ multiwire branch circuit]
it get tricky some time you will see one leg is dead the other leg is alive and netural will carry current anyway [ i will keep it seprated item if you want to know ]

if you don't like the lecture what the electrician give you then you should think about the safety and your home

there is a device call wire tracer it can trace the wire back to the breaker [ some are good and some are not too good with this ]

if need more question just post it here and please discourge what you been doing with this pratice it may end up hurt you more than what you think

[ i did survie alot of electric shocks so it do remind me for safety and respect ]

Merci , Marc

RobertWilber 02-15-2007 02:43 PM

I must concur
There was just an article posted on another forum within the week about a whole family that was killed in a fire caused by a maintenance man who tried to trip a breaker the same way.

Rze 02-22-2007 01:08 PM

Thanks guys. what I attempted to do was to short the line in, against the metal box. I understand the concern. It is appreciated and point is well taken I will not do this again in the future. However my original question still stands. The breaker did NOT trip. should I be concerned?

KUIPORNG 02-22-2007 03:30 PM

when you short
 
did you see a lot of fire spark firing on the air? Doesn't mean to ask you to try again now? but can you describe what happened....

because a short circuit will carry a lot of current... even for a milli-second... it will create firing spark....

may be you think you have short the circuit but you didn't really...

but don't try it again.. even it doesn't cause harm, if it burn one of your wire internally making them be cut off deal to too much heat... it is a big trouble to fix it...

joed 02-22-2007 05:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rze (Post 34351)
Thanks guys. what I attempted to do was to short the line in, against the metal box. I understand the concern. It is appreciated and point is well taken I will not do this again in the future. However my original question still stands. The breaker did NOT trip. should I be concerned?

I would hazard a guess that the circuit you were working on has NO ground. Shorting to the box did nothing since the box was not connected to anything.

It there were ground wires present then they are not connected properly or are not continuous back to the breaker panel.

jwhite 02-23-2007 05:48 PM

it was probably an FPE panel, or american. one of those where the breakers will not trip, so they went out of business.


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