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#13657 - 09/09/02 12:48 PM AFCI Receptacle  
dana1028  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 163
San Carlos, CA
Does anyone manufacture the AFCI receptacle yet?

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#13658 - 09/09/02 01:39 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
arseegee  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 324
Statesboro, GA USA
No, and I don't know if they will. Talked to P&S rep about it. The code says the entire branch circuit shall be protected which means as it leaves the panel. That kinda shoots down the device concept.

#13659 - 09/09/02 09:25 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
Sandro  Offline
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 444
Stoney Creek, ON, Canada
arseegee....... Nonetheless, IF they can produce an AFCI receptacle cheaper than an AFCI breaker (ever compare the price of a GFCI breaker to a GFCI receptacle?), then it would save a contractor a significant sum by running the circuit right next to the panel box and into a 'feed-thru' AFCI receptacle, just as many contractors use this concept with a 'feed thru' GFCI receptacle device.

I willing to bet money that if they can produce an AFCI receptacle for much cheaper, the demand will be great.


#13660 - 09/09/02 09:35 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
arseegee  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 324
Statesboro, GA USA
Well the cheapest way would be a removal of 210.12. But I don't think that's gonna happen either.

...."shall be protected by an arc-fault circuit interrupter listed to provide protection of the ENTIRE BRANCH CIRCUIT".

#13661 - 09/09/02 09:49 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
dana1028  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 163
San Carlos, CA
Sandro - that's what I had in mind.

The UL, Jan. 28,2002 article "Arc Fault Testing & Arc Fault Scenarios" lists 6 different product categories for AFCI devices. The UL product category/Type definition for AWBZ is: AFCI, Outlet Branch Circuit Type (aka: AFCI Receptacle)- 'A device intended to be installed as the first outlet in a branch circuit. It is intended to provide protection to downstream branch circuit wiring, cord sets, and power supply cords against the unwanted effects of arcing. This device also provides protection to upstream branch circuit wiring. It is intended to be provided with or without receptacle outlets.'

...sounds like it does a heck of a job.

I don't have the direct link to this UL article but this is the link to the UL AFCI Categories page -

#13662 - 09/09/02 10:04 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
Electric Eagle  Offline
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 914
Alpharetta, GA
I haven't been required to use one of these yet. I think the state of GA hasn't adopted the 2002 NEC yet and none of the contractors I know have been putting them in and no inspector has mentioned them to me.
I got one from a home owner that tried to do his own work and had replaced a GFCI with an AFCI. I plan to do some testing with it to see if they fail as often as everyone says.

[This message has been edited by Electric Eagle (edited 09-09-2002).]

#13663 - 09/09/02 10:18 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
dana1028  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 163
San Carlos, CA
To argue a point with you -

210-12(a) (1999 or 2002)Does Not say:
"the entire circuit".
In the article I just mentioned from UL, each of the 6 categories of AFCI devices protect different aspects of the branch circuit (this definition includes the AFCI circuit breaker).

Given the 210-12(a) definition: "AFCI is a device intended to provide protection functioning to de-energize the circuit when an arc fault is detected."

Every one of the 6 UL AFCI categories meets that requirement....there is not one single device (within the UL categories, including the AFCI circuit breaker) that can detect and protect against all arc fault conditions for the entire circuit.

To meet the 'entire circuit' definition two or more UL category devices must be combined
(e.g. the AFCI circuit breaker + AFCI receptacle [cat AWBZ]) to obtain this ideal:'protection from arc faults...on the entire circuit'.

The AFCI circuit breaker protects against about 1/6 of the arc fault conditions - how can you say this device [standing alone] satisfies the AFCI requirements?

I have no problem with a jurisdiction requiring the combination of 2 or more AFCI devices to meet the 210-12 code section; I do have a problem with a jurisdiction saying they accept the AFCI circuit breaker alone as meeting the requirements. (Isn't that like telling a cruise liner they only need boats and life jackets for 1/6 passengers?)

Boy do I hear the hooting and hollering now about the added cost!! ...but at least with this added cost you are getting some protection.

#13664 - 09/09/02 10:24 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
arseegee  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 324
Statesboro, GA USA
dana, maybe I've got a different version but the last line of 210.12 (B) says the entire branch circuit. But that's what I get for buying my code book at Kmart

#13665 - 09/10/02 11:11 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
dana1028  Offline
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 163
San Carlos, CA
Arsee -
I was looking at 1999 210-12(a)&(b) and 2002 210-12(a)...didn't see that in 2000 (b) [cuz I didn't look that far].....however we(CA) are still on the 1996 and will shortly be going to 1999.

But you could still argue the AFCI circuit breaker does not fulfill the 'entire circuit' requirement either. (Receps are part of the 'entire branch circuit' and circuit breaker type AFCIs don't cover those kinds of faults).

#13666 - 09/10/02 11:35 PM Re: AFCI Receptacle  
electric-ed  Offline
Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 175
What leads you to believe that a AFCI circuit breaker doesn't protect the circuit receptacles and the appliance cords plugged into those receptacles.


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