AFCI Breaker Won't Reset. Help Me Troubleshoot. - Electrical - Page 2 - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum
Advertisement


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

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

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes
Old 05-21-2010, 07:38 PM   #16
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default


Thanks - been a long day. Drinking is on the menu for the rest of the ..... weekend.
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 05-22-2010, 03:35 AM   #17
" Euro " electrician
 
frenchelectrican's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: WI & France { in France for now }
Posts: 5,369
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Leah.,

What brand AFCI breaker you have in your load centre I know there are couple brand on early models are little wonky the later one are better.

Merci,Marc
frenchelectrican is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 05-23-2010, 07:39 AM   #18
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NW of D.C.
Posts: 5,990
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Let's say your AFCI feeds outlets #1 through #10, with #10 being farthest downstream. You know that when all 10 are connected the AFCI trips and when none are connected the AFCI holds.

Disconnect the downstream outlets at #5. If the AFCI holds, the fault is downstream of #6.

If the AFCI still trips, disconnect the AFCI output and connect #6 outlet with a 50' section of Romex to the AFCI output so that the #1 through #5 section is bypassed and disconnected at each end.

By successively halving the sections that are powered or disconnected, and if there is only one fault present, this method should lead you to the fault location.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 05-23-2010 at 03:54 PM.
Yoyizit is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 05-23-2010, 05:53 PM   #19
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
Let's say your AFCI feeds outlets #1 through #10, with #10 being farthest downstream. You know that when all 10 are connected the AFCI trips and when none are connected the AFCI holds.

Disconnect the downstream outlets at #5. If the AFCI holds, the fault is downstream of #6.

If the AFCI still trips, disconnect the AFCI output and connect #6 outlet with a 50' section of Romex to the AFCI output so that the #1 through #5 section is bypassed and disconnected at each end.

By successively halving the sections that are powered or disconnected, and if there is only one fault present, this method should lead you to the fault location.
Yes, this is, in fact, the exact type of troubleshooting advice I need.
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 11:06 AM   #20
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NW of D.C.
Posts: 5,990
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Forgot step numero uno: first just hook up 50' of undamaged Romex to the AFCI and see that it doesn't trip.

I e-mailed Siemens for info about their arc diagnostic gadget.
50-50 they condescend to answer me.

And. . .Siemens comes through!

The question was referring to the video, and here is their answer.

"
The lamp is the actu cause of the arc.

for the breaker / tool to trip, there needs to be a draw of over 5 amps on the circuit that is creating an arc.

the breaker is reading the arc but will not trip until there is sufficient current being drawn on that circuit.

the vacuum cleaner draws enough current to trip the device if an arc is present elsewhere.

If the vacuum cleaner were run without the lamp on, there would not have been a trip...
"

So the AFCI is an AND gate; if
I > 5A
AND
arc
THEN trip.

Which means you can substitute an arcless load that draws more than 5A for the vacuum cleaner while you troubleshoot.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 05-24-2010 at 08:28 PM.
Yoyizit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 11:59 AM   #21
Master Electrician
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Indiana
Posts: 4,412
Rewards Points: 5,080
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
Forgot step numero uno: first just hook up 50' of undamaged Romex to the AFCI and see that it doesn't trip.

I e-mailed Siemens for info about their arc diagnostic gadget.
50-50 they condescend to answer me.
Siemens AFCI's have built in diagnostics.
brric is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 12:43 PM   #22
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NW of D.C.
Posts: 5,990
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by brric View Post
Siemens AFCI's have built in diagnostics.
That tells you it was a GF or an arc that tripped it? Two LEDs, right?
Yoyizit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 08:43 PM   #23
" Euro " electrician
 
frenchelectrican's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: WI & France { in France for now }
Posts: 5,369
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
That tells you it was a GF or an arc that tripped it? Two LEDs, right?
Oui that is correct it have two leds so it will tell you which type of fault.

Merci,Marc
frenchelectrican is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 08:47 PM   #24
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NW of D.C.
Posts: 5,990
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by frenchelectrican View Post
Oui that is correct it have two leds so it will tell you which type of fault.

Merci,Marc
La fin du monde est proche
Nah, just kidding. . .

For the GF testing a 50 mA fuse in series with an AC milliammeter may come in handy.
Yoyizit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 09:12 PM   #25
Learning by Doing
 
Leah Frances's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Easton, Maryland
Posts: 3,156
Rewards Points: 2,000
Blog Entries: 7
Default


Ok. Finally sobering up. My weekends usually last through Monday (DH's day off). I bought some extra AFCI breakers this weekend and I am going to do the following in the AM.

1. Disconnect the ceiling fan
2. Replace tripping breaker with new one
3. See what happens.

THANKS THANKS THANKS for all the help!
__________________
If I could only remember to THINK about what I was doing before I did it.
Leah Frances is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 09:17 PM   #26
Master Electrician
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Indiana
Posts: 4,412
Rewards Points: 5,080
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
La fin du monde est proche
Nah, just kidding. . .

For the GF testing a 50 mA fuse in series with an AC milliammeter may come in handy.
And just what would you do with these?
brric is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2010, 09:22 PM   #27
" Euro " electrician
 
frenchelectrican's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: WI & France { in France for now }
Posts: 5,369
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
La fin du monde est proche
Nah, just kidding. . .

For the GF testing a 50 mA fuse in series with an AC milliammeter may come in handy.
Yoyizit.,

I will not use that kind of methold of GF testing and the way I do in France we run the megger that will take care of it very fast it is a simple tool once you know to use it in safe manner.

I use it just about everyday in France and in Wisconsin I used it pretty often especally hard to trace fault on AFCI useage.

Merci,Marc
frenchelectrican is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2010, 07:42 AM   #28
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NW of D.C.
Posts: 5,990
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by brric View Post
And just what would you do with these?
Put them in series with the ground wire, assuming the leakage is being returned through the ground wire.
Yoyizit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2010, 08:07 AM   #29
Master Electrician
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Indiana
Posts: 4,412
Rewards Points: 5,080
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
Put them in series with the ground wire, assuming the leakage is being returned through the ground wire.
Why all the BS? If the current is through the ground wire simply removing it from the buss and touching it to the buss after resetting the breaker will trip the AFCI.
brric is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-25-2010, 09:04 AM   #30
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NW of D.C.
Posts: 5,990
Rewards Points: 2,000
Default


Quote:
Originally Posted by brric View Post
Why all the BS? If the current is through the ground wire simply removing it from the buss and touching it to the buss after resetting the breaker will trip the AFCI.
Yes, if the AFCI is not nuisance-tripping. One OP had AFCI trips because he lived near a radio station.

The AFCI is a go/no-go device. Having an LED for arcs and another for GFs is an improvement but when you get misleading results it's time to make measurements with meters.
If those readings also look strange then you need an o'scope.

And I'll check the calibration on my BS filter, sometimes it drifts out of adjustment. . .

Last edited by Yoyizit; 05-25-2010 at 09:11 AM.
Yoyizit is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply


Thread Tools
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 circuit breaker bryan1282 Electrical 14 02-11-2010 06:06 PM
breaker won't reset wendl Electrical 3 01-15-2010 10:03 PM
Sq D Trillaint Breaker problem jmreynol Electrical 3 04-28-2009 07:06 PM
Breaker tripped and won"t reset princessme Electrical 8 01-19-2009 07:10 AM




Top of Page | View New Posts