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Old 09-19-2011, 12:57 PM   #1
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


I flipped the breaker and saw a spark at the switch. I don't see any melted insulation but being paranoid as I am can I still use the dimmer now that I fixed the error?

The dimmer is also part of a 20 amp circuit but I noticed after opening the package it has the jumper wire preconnected and they look to be less than 12 gauge. Thinking this not permitted?

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Old 09-19-2011, 01:35 PM   #2
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


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Originally Posted by toobhed View Post
I flipped the breaker and saw a spark at the switch. I don't see any melted insulation but being paranoid as I am can I still use the dimmer now that I fixed the error?

The dimmer is also part of a 20 amp circuit but I noticed after opening the package it has the jumper wire preconnected and they look to be less than 12 gauge. Thinking this not permitted?
What was the error?
Does the package say the dimmer is rated for 20 amps?

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Old 09-19-2011, 01:45 PM   #3
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


Rarely would you need a dimmer to be able to switch 20 amps worth of load. A dimmer that controlled 20 amps of load would also take a multigang box and be very expensive.
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Old 09-19-2011, 02:16 PM   #4
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


It doesn't say anything about amperage.
http://www.homedepot.com/buy/lightin...ory-51956.html

As for the mistake, I'm embarrassed to say but was wiring an outlet and light and leg drop to switch and pretty much wired the hot and neutral together and in the on position it tripped the breaker, thankfully. I was looking at a diagram that I used successfully elsewhere but still managed to screw it up.

I was curious about using this on a 20 amp circuit because I thought I read somewhere that any wiring less than 12 gauge anywhere in the circuit was not allowed. Since the jumper wire on the switch seems a lot more pliable than the 12 wire I wondered if this would be allowed.

If I damaged the switch would I know it?
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Old 09-19-2011, 02:24 PM   #5
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


UL listed assemblies are not subject to the NEC.
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Old 09-19-2011, 09:36 PM   #6
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


FWIW, the link you provided is a 600 watt dimmer. Specs say 15 amp.
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Old 09-19-2011, 09:57 PM   #7
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


Thanks all. I ended up replacing the dimmer for good measure.
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Old 09-20-2011, 08:24 AM   #8
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Tripped breaker after wiring a new dimmer, ok to use dimmer after correcting mistake?


If you connected the dimmer incorrectly and tripped the breaker, it is possible that the dimmer regardless of watts rating or wiring sizes or breaker rating got damaged. But you won't know this for sure unless you re-installed the diimmer correctly and it worked okay.

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