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Old 05-21-2008, 12:08 AM   #1
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Is my breaker going bad, or am I drawing too much current?


My breaker for my garage has been popping lately. I normally don't use my compressor much, but lately I have, and it's been running for maybe 20 minutes at a time until the breaker finally pops. I was thinking that perhaps there is too much on that breaker (20A), but I turned off everything except the compressor and the 2 refrigerators that I have plugged in, and it still pops after about 20 minutes of use with the compressor. My compressor is just one of those small 8 gallon tanks on wheels...
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Old 05-21-2008, 06:15 AM   #2
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What's the amperage rating for the compressor, and each refrigerator? I wouldn't be suprised if all three compressors running at once could trip the 20A breaker.
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Old 05-21-2008, 09:22 AM   #3
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You have too much load on the circuit in my opinion. Compressor should be on its own circuit.
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Old 05-21-2008, 07:57 PM   #4
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but I turned off everything except the compressor and the 2 refrigerators that I have plugged in, and it still pops after about 20 minutes of use with the compressor. My compressor is just one of those small 8 gallon tanks on wheels...

Unplug the two fridges. Then try again, it probably won't happen. You'll have to get that compressor it's own circuit.
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Old 05-22-2008, 10:20 AM   #5
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I can't see a reason to put an 8 gallon compressor on a dedicated circuit. I would just limit the amout of devices (load) on that circuit. I have 15 gallon air compressor and have never had the breaker trip. But the circuit does not have much load on it. One freezer, four bench receptacles and two 8 foot flourescent lamps.
Unplug one fridge and see if the compressor trips the breaker.
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Old 05-22-2008, 12:29 PM   #6
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The fridges have too much beer in them likely causing the overload.

Step one: Unplug compressor
Step two: Drink the beer
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Old 05-22-2008, 12:30 PM   #7
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8 gallons, 15 gallons means nothing electrically for a compressor rating. You need to specify the motor HP or FLA(both is best) to know if it belongs on a certain size circuit.
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Old 05-22-2008, 11:46 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJimmy View Post
The fridges have too much beer in them likely causing the overload.

Step one: Unplug compressor
Step two: Drink the beer
Actually one of them does.
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Old 05-23-2008, 01:30 AM   #9
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You are overloading the circuit and your breaker may be getting weak from running it at peak load. Putting the compressor on its another circuit would most likely eliminate the problem. The most likely time it kicks out is whem one of the friges kicks on. The load spike is the culprit.
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Old 05-23-2008, 11:04 AM   #10
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Actually one of them does.
Darn, CA is to far for BigJimmy and I to travel to, or we would be happy to help you get rid of that. We would even rewire the place while we were there.

Add up the nameplate loads for the fridges and compressor and compare it to the circuit capacity. Move one to another circuit. Or unplug one fridge when you use the compressor. Not the beer fridge, you gotta have priorities.

Last edited by jrclen; 05-23-2008 at 11:09 AM.
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