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#19450 - 12/28/02 12:38 PM AFCI's
rowdyrudy Offline
Member
Registered: 11/02/02
Posts: 171
Loc: Mascoutah, IL USA
In attempting to get as much info as possible for presentation to the full group for discussion, I have found some disturbing items. If anything has changed from the below I'd like to know.
1. AFCI's not compatible with GFCI protected circuits.
2. Combination AFCI/GFCI CB's may be available in the future.
3. No testing device available for AFCI CB's.
4. Disconnect all AFCI's prior to hy-potting a panel.
Several other concerns/shortcomings.
The other panel members are leaning towards rejecting the requirement for AFCI's, as have many jurisdictions. What is the concensus from those who are forced to deal with items like this that are injected into the system prior to having full testing and evaluation. The one that is most disturbing to me is #1. It appears that the mfgrs once again used their influence to get an item in the code before it's time. It makes it real difficult for those who are trying to get legislation passed to accept the NEC.
Rowdy
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#19451 - 12/28/02 01:27 PM Re: AFCI's
resqcapt19 Offline
Member
Registered: 11/10/00
Posts: 2209
Loc: IL
I suggest that you do a search on this forum for AFCI. There are a large number of threads with extensive posts on this subject.
don
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#19452 - 12/28/02 02:02 PM Re: AFCI's
rowdyrudy Offline
Member
Registered: 11/02/02
Posts: 171
Loc: Mascoutah, IL USA
I have searched the mfgrs and UL sites. That's where I got the info.
Rowdy
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#19453 - 12/28/02 03:37 PM Re: AFCI's
sparky Offline
Member
Registered: 10/18/00
Posts: 5545
2nd Don's reply

quickly:

1. AFCI's not compatible with GFCI protected circuits.

no prob, to my knowledge.....

2. Combination AFCI/GFCI CB's may be available in the future.

as i understand it, yes.....


3. No testing device available for AFCI CB's.

no,there was a thread here, and new 'tester'.

4. Disconnect all AFCI's prior to hy-potting a panel.

true, i believe it is stated on the packaging.
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#19454 - 12/29/02 12:53 AM Re: AFCI's
nesparky Offline
Member
Registered: 06/21/01
Posts: 650
Loc: omaha,ne
Because of the lack of reliable accurate historical information and a lot of manufacturers hype, many jurisdictions declined to be part of the beta test of these devices.
as for your questions
# 1 no need to put a gfi and afci on same circuit.
#2 Cutler hammer and square D afci have gfi circuitry in thier afci. So thier rep's claim as does thier brocures. It set somewhere from 30 to 70 mA according to the rep's depending on manufacturer.
#3 true only device marketed is a waste of maney it has a problem according to a recall notice I saw
#4 Any device with sensitive electronics will not stand a hipot test including gfi breakers.
As don said AFCI's have been the subject of a lot of posts here. I for one still do not believe the are worth the cost.
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ed
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#19455 - 12/29/02 07:49 AM Re: AFCI's
sparky66wv Offline
Member
Registered: 11/17/00
Posts: 2342
Loc: West Virginia
Allow me to add:
The AFCIs, for the most part, are Class B GFCIs. They cannot be used as Class A GFCI protection.
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#19456 - 12/29/02 09:17 AM Re: AFCI's
resqcapt19 Offline
Member
Registered: 11/10/00
Posts: 2209
Loc: IL
We should not be calling the ground fault protection that is built into the AFCI breaker GFCI. It is not GFCI, with the exception of the dual listed CH product, it is GFP. As sparky66 pointed out, the GFP in the AFCI device is set to operate much above the required setpoint of a GFCI device. The term GFCI should be reserved for use for ground fault protection devices that are intended to protect people. The term GFP should be used for all other ground fault protection devices. When you get down to studying the details of the AFCI breaker operation, you will find that in many cases the actual protection is provided by the GFP circuit and not the fancy arc detection circuit.
don
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#19457 - 12/29/02 11:19 AM Re: AFCI's
ElectricAL Offline
Member
Registered: 10/10/01
Posts: 615
Loc: Minneapolis, MN USA
NESparky,

I can think of at least one scenario that leads to a required GFI on an AFCI protected circuit.

If I elect to put an exterior outlet on the deck (hypothetical deck) outside the bedroom, when the deck access is through the bedroom, I'll find it awful tempting to tag on the deck outlet and light to the bedroom circuit, especially if the job is competitively bid.

Admittedly, not all deck situations will require a GFI for the outlet on the deck, but many will.

Exploring the possibilities,

Al
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Al Hildenbrand
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#19458 - 12/29/02 10:47 PM Re: AFCI's
nesparky Offline
Member
Registered: 06/21/01
Posts: 650
Loc: omaha,ne
Good point AL
Since my home state deleted the AFCI requirements when the 2002 code was adopted, I do not have to worry about that problem.
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ed
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