Originally Posted by TipsyMcStagger
Is it overloaded if it's at the rated limit?
I would think not?
then you would think wrong. When I said overloaded, it was a bit of a misstatement. It was overloaded because it could not handle the load applied. It was not overloaded because of the load compared to the rating.
the one that caught fire actually was not beyond it's rating. It was on a job (all engineered and everything). I noticed it was hot one day and said something to the boss. He kind of blew it off as it had been spec'd and was actually within it's rating. When I say hot, I mean it was hot enough I did not want to leave my hand on it.
anyway, one day we come to work and find a melted dimmer. Luckily it was in a metal box and there was apparently not enough flames to catch the sheetrock paper on fire. It ruined the carpet that was below it though as molten metal and plastic fell onto it. (there was no trim plate on it as the room was not finished yet)
I have always found it better to upsize a dimmer if you are getting near the max rating.